The First of a Series on the Changing Face of the Military
So on this the anniversary of September 11, we look at how the Gulliver fights the Lilliputians.
War is a great driver of change. It was Grant who saw that War was no longer an engagement of heroes who sought a decisive battle but the engagement of economies who sought to crush the enemy's society. He lived at a time when the agrarian age was being overwhelmed by the industrial age.
Now we live in a time when the industrial model for war as exemplified by the cold war and by the triumph of Desert Storm no longer works. The 1st Armored division arrives in Bosnia to discover that its equipment does not allow for deployment. The Abrams Tank and the Bradley fighting Vehicle are too heavy and cumbersome. The Apache too vulnerable to shoulder held missiles. It took months to deploy the forces in the region to fight the first Iraqi war. There is no longer the time to deploy at that scale. If an enemy chooses not to fight conventionally, America's might can be a drawback.
So the US military, and all others, are going to have to find a new doctrine just as Grant found a new doctrine in the civil war. The attached article from the Times points out some of the steps. But this is a huge subject and we will look at a number of factors not just about equipment but more importantly about mindset and world view.
We will especially look at the culture that is demanded of the new military. Why am I doing this?
Because it is likely that we will see the new organization in action early in the military and we can then use the lessons to apply this learning back into the civil sector. For another trend is that the military is the organizational model. What the army does we do later. They do it first because they have a greater Darwinian pressure to adapt than a business.