9:10 AM, Aug 19, 2015 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The blogger Angry Staff Officer writes at taskandpurpose.com that
Today, the Army is facing a drawdown to 450,000 soldiers, the smallest it has been since before World War II.
A challenge, but not one without precedent. The example most worth study is that of the Army after World War I when it
mobilized active, National Guard, and draftee divisions; trained them; and put them overseas in France to carry out protracted campaigns — all in less than a year. At its height, the Army of 1918 swelled to 2.5 million men and women. By 1920, however, the Army had dropped down to barely 200,000 men, with only 56,000 in the National Guard. Further cuts in 1922 and 1923 left the Army at 133,000. Larger than the Army of 1916, but a far cry from the Army that led the American Expeditionary Force in France during the world war. What happened?
Angry Staff Officer considers this question, in detail and not all of his answers are discouraging. The very small US army of the period between the wars was exceedingly professional and served as a kind of cadre when the need for a vastly large force became clear. Officers like Patton, Eisenhower, and Marshall were in place. The Army’s most serious problems in those times were no so much with personnel and ...
The real gap was in research and development of new weapons and technology. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Douglas MacArthur wrote in 1933 that the Army’s tanks were useless on a modern battlefield. The Army continued to rely on their stocks of war materiel from World War I up until the beginning of World War II, severely hampering overall wartime readiness.
This is just one of several insights in this timely article. Read the whole thing.
9:24 AM, Jul 31, 2015 • By GEOFFREY NORMAN
The Army and the Navy cannot do what they once could and might soon be required to do again. They don’t have enough soldiers and enough ships.
2:09 PM, Jun 26, 2015 • By JERYL BIER
A top commander in southwest Asia reminded U.S military personnel stationed in Muslim countries in the Middle East of the restrictions placed on them during Ramadan. According to a report by the U.S. Air Forces Central Command Public Affairs, Brig. Gen.
6:44 AM, Sep 30, 2014 • By JERYL BIER
President Obama was counting strokes on the golf course at Fort Belvoir in northern Virginia last Saturday, but the day before a $91,318.76
10:03 AM, Aug 11, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Can the United States maintain a "limited" military force in Iraq to stop the Islamist militants targeting ethnic minorities in that country? At Politico, Philip Ewing notes how difficult that strategy may be for President Barack Obama:
2:19 PM, Aug 4, 2014 • By ADAM J. WHITE
Back in the day when it was fashionable for the press to criticize the president and senior military officials for mismanaging a war--that is, from 2003 to 2009--such stories often focused on the colonels, majors, and captains who saw firsthand the practical problems with their superiors' approach and who pushed hard to change policy based on that hard-fought experience.
"So he's a bad father?" "Yes!"9:42 AM, Jun 5, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
MSNBC's Joe Scarborough got in a heated debate with colleague Chuck Todd Thursday morning over whether the father of recently released POW Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl should be subject to criticism over his actions. Scarborough criticized the Obama administration for including Bob Bergdahl in a Rose Garden announcement on Saturday to announce the release of Bowe in exchange for five Taliban officials who had been detained at Guantanamo Bay.
“Joe, Joe, let's not. Don’t criticize the parents,” Todd replied. “Don’t criticize the parents in here."
1:21 PM, Jun 4, 2014 • By DENNIS P. HALPIN
A U.S. Army soldier goes missing at night from a remote post on the edge of enemy territory. Depressed and anxious, he has expressed doubts about the U.S. mission and disillusionment with the war. He allegedly leaves behind a note recording these doubts. There are some reports that he consumes alcohol before he disappears. He crosses enemy lines and is detained by hostile forces who subsequently publicly announce his conversion to their anti-American cause.
The soldiers in Bowe Bergdahl's platoon speak up.
3:45 PM, Jun 2, 2014 • By STEPHEN F. HAYES
The Obama administration is facing mounting questions about the controversial prisoner swap that freed Army Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl from jihadists in Pakistan in exchange for the transfer and ultimate release of five senior Taliban commanders previously held in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.
1:22 PM, Jun 2, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Six American soldiers died in their search for Bowe Bergdahl, the Army sergeant freed by the Taliban in exchange for five Taliban detainees at Guantanamo Bay. Time magazine's Mark Thompson provides the names, photos, and stories of the men who did not return from their mission: staff sergeant Clayton Bowen, private first class Morris Walker, staff sergeant Kurt Curtiss, second lieutenant Darryn Andrews, staff sergeant Michael Murphrey, and private first class Matthew Martinek.
7:00 AM, Jun 2, 2014 • By MICHAEL WARREN
Several men who served with Army sergeant Bowe Bergdahl in Afghanistan say Bergdahl deserted in 2009 before being captured by the Taliban. Bergdahl's release this weekend as part of an exchange with the U.S. for five top Taliban operatives who were being held in Guantanamo Bay has prompted those servicemen to speak out. Jake Tapper at CNN reports:
Mar 10, 2014, Vol. 19, No. 25 • By GARY SCHMITT and THOMAS DONNELLY
America’s chattering classes seem at last to have awoken to the fact that the U.S. military ain’t what it used to be. Even the New York Times allows that “the Pentagon’s proposals to reduce the Army to pre-World War II levels” could “seem unsettling to a nation that prides itself on having the world’s most capable military.” It could also unsettle the world, and most of all those allies who rely on the United States to keep a variety of dangers at bay.