Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Cockamamie Coin

Gen. Stanley McChrystal’s insistence on a total of 650,000 counterinsurgency troops—including NATO and Afghan forces—is based on a ratio in the military’s new counterinsurgency manual. Isn’t that convenient?

Rupert Murdoch’s TIMESONLINE reports that the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff are preparing to persuade President Barack Obama to approve an Afghanistan surge. Another surge justifies a bigger Army, and guarantees the success of the Pentagon’s Long War initiative.

On FOX News, neoconservative icon Charles Krauthammer argues that if we don’t stay the course in Afghanistan, al-Qaeda will get its mitts on the nukes in Pakistan. That’s precisely the kind of logic we normally get from right-wing psychiatrist Krauthammer.

Editorial vice-boob Colbert King of the Washington Post accuses Obama of being in an “analysis paralysis.” If you hadn’t noticed, the Post has become the main mainstream media cheerleader of all things Pentagon. That’s largely a result of Thomas E. Ricks’ reach-around relationship with Gen. David Petraeus.

Our COIN doctrine is a mirage. It’s a slapdash combobulation of claptrap plagiarized from older documents that weren’t particularly coherent to begin with. The 2.5:1000 counterinsurgent troops to population ratio the manual calls for came straight from the gas horn of somebody like neocon darling Fred Kagan.

Unfortunately, it looks like McChrystal’s going to win and get his re-escalation, and it looks like we’ll be fighting another senseless war forever.

I had such hopes that we would become an enlightened nation.

Commander Jeff Huber, U.S. Navy (Retired) writes at Pen and Sword. Jeff's novel Bathtub Admirals (Kunati Books), a lampoon on America's rise to global dominance, is on sale now.


  1. Anonymous1:14 AM

    This is definitely a guarranteed money maker for the guys in the arms and PMC industries!

    Maybe I am in the wrong job after all! I can make more money (legally) providing and peddling death and suffering in a week, than working as a nurse in a Hospital in three weeks or a month.

    This article has only just reinforced how little faith I have in Gen McChrystal as a soldier and as a person.

    It will be more like 250,000 U.S. and NATO/Allied troops as the Afghan security forces have already proven to be inept. This, and the corruption in the Afghan govt. kinda reminds me of Vietnam....inept troops, rampant corruption in govt. and military circles, use of sanctuaries by the enemy etc. etc.

    Tis the end of the Empire, sire!

  2. Anonymous5:00 PM

    The minimium COIN ratio is 10:1000. 2.5:1000 is CT!!

    However, that is malarky. The figure in "nation building" is what percent of the population of evil doers plotting to blow up New York and Muslim miscreants who don't agree with John Calvin and Adam Smith need to be killed to win the survivors over?

    The problem with the pentagon, from buying airplanes to extorting more kids to Afghanistan, is they talk resources all the time and neglect to tell anyone what the resources need to achieve.

    Sending more troops is meaningless unless they tell how many enemy insurgents have to be killed before a village becomes sufficiently passive or a grave site.

    The US and it allies will have to engage in a final solution with Islam.

    How many will die before NY is safe from Islam?

    There is historic example: Ghengis Khan, Hitler, and Stalin, let's quit moralizing and get on with it before Al Qaida gets nukes.


  3. COIN actually sounds like the beginnings of a stealth full employment plan to me. Since you can find evildoers all over the world, and jobless Americans on every street corner in the U.S., it only makes sense for the government to put two and two together.

    It probably looks good to Obama because it allows him to ship overseas thousands of the formally idealistic, currently pissed-off young people who supported him in the naive hope that he actually meant what he said. All in exchange for forgiveness of the student loans they racked up pursuing now-worthless degrees and a "job" digging foxholes 10,000 miles from home. Such a deal!!

    Even better, it will be a lot easier to misplace their ballots on the trip from Camp Woebegone to election headquarters in the U.S.. By all means, jack that ratio to 10:1000. Full employment for all!

  4. Damn, I'm getting cynical in my old age.

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