1. “Advice to a Generic Candidate
Note that in the foregoing list of wars, all were expected to end quickly. This should not surprise. Military men live in the psychic world of the cavalry charge, of decisive battle, of courage, heroism, and glorious victory. Modern militaries are designed with short-and-sweet in mind, with tanks ships and aircraft intended to fight other tanks ships and aircraft. Unfortunately wars nowadays are more like dealing with a recalcitrant bureaucracy. They go on and on. Concentrated firepower doesn’t work well against dispersed enemies. The treasury bleeds, the public wearies. Quick victory seldom comes. The Pentagon thrashes and thrashes every more desperately, a saber tooth in the tar pits of La Brea. Just give us a little more time, a few more troops, a surge….
Reflect that the Pentagon hasn’t won a war since 1945, unless you count titanic eruptions like Grenada. Yes, it usually wins the conventional battles, as it did in Afghanistan, as it did in Iraq, Mission Accomplished, but then the enemy deploys the most fearsome weapons of the last half-centry: the AK, the RPG, and the IED.
The Pentagon can bomb Iran with impunity, as it could Afghanistatn. It thinks it can keep the Straits open, as it thought it could do all the things in the past that it couldn’t. How many burning supertankers does it take to discourage the rest?
Then the unexpected comes. It turns out that the enemy is not as stupid as the strategy required. Pehhaps thousands of Iranian troops infiltrate into largely Shiite Iraq, which blows again. Oh fun.”
2. “States Attempt to Instill ‘Work Ethic’ by Rolling Back Child Labor Protections”