Monday, January 14, 2008

Analysts: Army Can't Fight Because Its at War

Huh? I get so tired of these stories bemoaning the fact that our excellent military is doing what its paid to do, which is fight our country's wars. Here's more of this tripe via the Marine Corps Times:

If the U.S. were to face a new conventional threat, its military could not respond effectively without turning to air power, officials and analysts say...

“I believe that we, as a nation, are at risk of mission failure should our Army be called to deploy to an emerging threat,” Rep. Solomon Ortiz, D-Texas, chairman of the House Armed Services readiness subcommittee, said last year, basing his assessment on classified Army readiness reports.

“Iraq is sort of sucking all the oxygen out of the room,” said Tammy Schultz, who studies ground forces for the Center for a New American Security, a relatively new Washington think tank dedicated to “strong, pragmatic and principled” security and defense policies.

“My huge fear is that ... we’re really putting the nation at risk,” Schultz said. “It could reach absolutely tragic levels if the United States has to respond to a major contingency any time in the near future.”

The Army is bearing the brunt of the fight, and senior leaders readily acknowledge that.

“We are consumed with meeting the demands of the current fight and unable to provide ready forces as rapidly as necessary for other contingencies,” Army Chief of Staff Gen. George Casey told the Senate Armed Services Committee on Nov. 15.

Here's a thought-lets all band together as a nation and win the war we already have, then maybe future enemies will think twice about attacking us when they see our resolve. How hard is that? Sheesh!

More-An excellent rebuttal on the "stretched thin army" argument is from Eric Swabb at the Wall Street Journal:

It is true that repeated deployments have caused considerable strain on service members, equipment and our ability to respond to other contingencies. These problems, however, only tell half the story. The Iraq war is also dramatically improving the military's understanding, training and capabilities in irregular warfare. Since this is the preferred method of Islamic extremists, the experience in Iraq is transforming the military into the force required to help win the Long War.

...overemphasis on the "eroding" capabilities of the armed forces belies the incredible emergence of an irregular warfare capacity in the world's greatest conventional military.

This hard-fought transformation faces resistance from advocates of the status quo in the military, and thus is easily reversible without political support.

See? A battle-hardened, not a beaten force!