Note: Cross posted at dkos. Since the beginning of this war on the Middle East aka NAA (naked American Aggression) former military analysts have been all over the TV screens explaining what’s going on. They have charts, maps, and are treated well by the press.
Who are these guys? They’re former high ranking military officers. They can pick up the phone and talk to almost anybody in the military, especially their comrades in arms who are still serving active duty. In one sense it’s like having Arthur Andersen report on how Enron is doing…or is it?
At the beginning of the war most of the analysts were pretty gung ho and sounding much like the Pentagon itself. Glowing praise was passed off as analysis and we all wondred what they were smoking. Well, wonder no more:
Here’s Jack Jacobs on Obermann (and he’s been on Fox, Imus, etc etc):
Our biggest worry is that we just can`t recruit the numbers that we need. Even the Marine Corps, who typically has no problem recruiting people, has had difficulty the last few months or so.
Not only that, we rely so heavily on Guard, National Guard, and Reserve troops, because they provide us with the military occupational specialties that are in short supply in active duty ranks, and we require them there for the Guard and the Reserve people to perform extended duty in Southwest Asia.
If we rely so heavily on them, and their recruitment goals are not being met, we`re going to have a very big problem a couple of years down the road.
<<In other words, the system he loves and supports is in deep trouble. People flat out do not support this war and parents are not allowing their kids to go.>>
OLBERMANN: To speculate about that time, Army recruiting down 42 percent in April, they lower the quota by 18 percent for May, still miss the quota by a quarter. Can you do the rough math here? At what point do we run out of the personnel required just for the commitments we already have?
JACOBS: Well, I think we`re probably at the limit now. I think we may have if–another six months or so before things really get dire, and something significant is going to have to be done.
It`s difficult, I think, for the Defense Department to come up with solutions, however. They`re going to have to do things like you suggested earlier, keeping people we would otherwise throw out, lower the standards for people we do bring in.
You know, we`ve had an all-volunteer army. We`ve had nothing but high school graduates, fairly high standards, for the duration of the all-volunteer Army. And now we`re at a point where we`re going to have to lower the standards if we want to make the numbers, and it`s going to be extremely difficult to do so without turning the Army into what it was in the `70s, after the war in the Vietnam, a really ineffective fighting force.
And that`s unfortunate, for two reasons. First of all, I don`t like to see my Army denigrated like that. And secondly, we have enormous worldwide commitments that we will not able to satisfy with that kind of force.
<<They’re screwing up in the worst way, they (BushCo) are ruining the services and it sucks. <p> Jacobs isn’t the only one. This is the sort of thing we’re hearing from all the analysts. We’re now hearing from active duty officers this war is unwinnable, that we will have to leave and the civil war that is already going will erupt. It’s going to get worse. We have Poured men and materials in there and we can’t get control. Even BushCo knows they are in over their heads (how’s That for scary?) and their hollow denials aren’t working. Our so-called leaders don’t have a plan and the military knows it (and doesn’t like it) There is no plan just as there are no freedom fries. Bush can’t find the exit from Iraq because their plan was to exit via Iran or Syria.
They don’t have a plan. We do. But we need to talk about it. What would you do if you were on the WH staff? What plan would you suggest? Don’t give me (well, you can if you want to) the pack your bags and leave because that does mean more civilians will get killed but practically, realistically, what would you do? Let’s hear it. I’m off to a planning mtg for the fall election so won;t be around to pimp this diary. Help me out, please and thank you.>> And I suck at doing the grey boxes so the << were my comments.