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Sunday, February 01, 2015

Unready for 4GW

No one serious believed that Obama was even remotely capable of handling foreign policy, but most erroneously assumed that he was smart enough to hand off responsibility for it to foreign policy veterans. That has not turned out to be the case, as Jerry Pournelle notes Peggy Noonan's recent column in the Wall Street Journal:
No one thinks this administration is the A Team when it comes to foreign affairs, but this is unprecedented push-back from top military and intelligence players. They are fed up, they’re less afraid, they’re retired, and they’re speaking out. We are going to be seeing more of this kind of criticism, not less.

On Thursday came the testimony of three former secretaries of state, Henry Kissinger (1973-77), George Shultz (1982-89) and Madeleine Albrigh t (1997-2001). Senators asked them to think aloud about what America’s national-security strategy should be, what approaches are appropriate to the moment. It was good to hear serious, not-green, not-merely-political people give a sense of the big picture. Their comments formed a kind of bookend to the generals’ criticisms.

They seemed to be in agreement on these points:
  • We are living through a moment of monumental world change.
  • Old orders are collapsing while any new stability has yet to emerge.
  • When you’re in uncharted waters your boat must be strong.
  • If America attempts to disengage from this dangerous world it will only make all the turmoil worse.
Mr. Kissinger observed that in the Mideast, multiple upheavals are unfolding simultaneously—within states, between states, between ethnic and religious groups. Conflicts often merge and produce such a phenomenon as the Islamic State, which in the name of the caliphate is creating a power base to undo all existing patterns.

Mr. Shultz said we are seeing an attack on the state system and the rise of a “different view of how the world should work.” What’s concerning is “the scope of it.”
Correct diagnosis, wrong prescription. Observe that these foreign policy experts are more than a decade behind William Lind, who described these extra-state upheavals in both ON WAR and FOUR GENERATIONS OF MODERN WAR.

And Lind is also correct to assert that America MUST disengage from "this dangerous world", as the very danger is primarily the result of disastrous Anglo-American meddling in the Middle East. Islam is what it is, but it would not not be resurgent and aggressively expansionary if the British, followed by the Americans, had not made it possible through their insanely inept Middle East policies.

The West needs to adopt a siege mentality, expel the non-Westerners, and let the fire burn itself out. Continued engagement only guarantees that it will be necessary to fight an indefinite number of fires within the West itself.

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63 Comments:

Anonymous Earl February 01, 2015 10:36 AM  

Ok Vox, I'm with you on this to a large degree. But what about the Christians being slaughtered by ISIS and Boko Haram? Should the West help them out? How?

Anonymous NateM February 01, 2015 10:43 AM  

"If America attempts to disengage from this dangerous world it will only make all the turmoil worse."

Isn't this the same thing they said Pre WWI-WWII? it was as wrongheaded then as it is now. History has shown how little actually came out of US involvement in The Great War, to the point where the veterans of it and those from that era didn't care to get involved in WWII afterwards. I have a hard time believing Kissinger is THAT historically ignorant

Anonymous VD February 01, 2015 10:56 AM  

But what about the Christians being slaughtered by ISIS and Boko Haram? Should the West help them out? How?

Nigeria has 175 million people. Why on Earth do you think they need the help of the West to defend themselves. All the West needs to do is say: take care of it yourselves. The Christians there control the army and the government. If they can't bother to defend themselves, why should the West?

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 01, 2015 11:03 AM  

"The West needs to adopt a siege mentality, expel the non-Westerners, and let the fire burn itself out."

Correct.

Blogger FALPhil February 01, 2015 11:06 AM  

The hubris of politicians and bureaucrats, especially those affiliated with the State Department, never ceases to amaze. Regardless of the party, when they encounter failure, the knee-jerk reaction always falls on the side of catch-all, leftist-collectivist defense: "We didn't do it enough!"

And under it all is the desire for power. Before The Great War, Wilson wanted a seat at the table with the Big Boys. Before WWII, Roosevelt calculated that he could topple Britain from its prominent position as Leader of the Free World if he let them bleed long enough (and was quite successful). The Truman Doctrine led to the idiotic Domino Theory, which was the catalyst for dragging out the Cold War.

What have Americans gained from all this? A constant state of war, high taxes, central government meddling in every facet of life, and restrictions on all the activities that the law of the land was written to protect.

I'll get off my soapbox now.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 01, 2015 11:10 AM  

The best gift the West could give Christians globally would be a solid promise that violent acts of self-defense would not trigger an intervention in which Christian would (as usual) be devastated.

The idea that America is a Christian power, run by Christians and people who like Christians, and that its interventions are pro-Christian and would be missed if it took a backward step, does not square with recent history.

Anonymous Orville February 01, 2015 11:33 AM  

"The West needs to adopt a siege mentality, expel the non-Westerners, and let the fire burn itself out."

Ain't gonna happen. Kissinger, Brezinski, et al have a hard on for empire. Since that group is running things there will be no disengagement.

Anonymous grey enlightenment February 01, 2015 11:38 AM  

Earl, one can argue more Christians have died fighting Islamic terror than by Boko harem or ISIS

Blogger Antonio From Spain February 01, 2015 11:39 AM  

Islam is what it is, but it would not not be resurgent and aggressively expansionary if the British, followed by the Americans, had not made it possible through their insanely inept Middle East policies.

Vox, I think the West will eventually conclude the opposite.

Islam launched a completely unprovoked attack and subsequent invasion against Spain. It went on to try the same against the Franks. Asia Minor and Eastern Europe also. The 3rd president of the USA had to send the Marines to the shores of Tripoli to liberate captured sailors in the Mediterranean at a time when the US had a foreign policy comparable to today’s Liechtenstein. All this and more, always unprovoked.

Yes, it can be argued that the English-speaking peoples have made it worse. But they are, with the Nordics, the white people who’ve had less experience with Islam. While the periphery of Christendom fended off the Muslims at the Poitiers, Navas de Tolosa, Lepanto, Viena, etc. the Northwest remained largely blissfully unaware. That is, the Chatholic/Romance and the Orthodox/Slavic whites have some memory, the Protestant/AngloGermanic are just beginning to realize. I do not believe they will conclude that if they had left Islam alone, then they would have been spared. And contrary to what the mass media would want us to think, the Anglosphere does not consist exclusively of pajama boys. Islam is cornering the market of tickets in the raffle to become the next Carthago.

Anonymous H2 February 01, 2015 11:57 AM  

According to the book The Burning Tigris, America's desire to intervene internationally started with the Armenian genocide because they were fellow Christians.

Anonymous Mike M. February 01, 2015 11:57 AM  

Sorry, Vox. Our ability to disengage is limited. A trade power MUST have clear sea lines of communications. And unfortunately, the Middle Eastern barbarians happen to be sitting on a lot of oil we (or at least the Europeans) need. About all that can be done is to not get involved in their internal affairs - and make it crystal clear that attacking us or our interests will have catastrophic consequences.

Anonymous Mr. Rational February 01, 2015 12:08 PM  

unfortunately, the Middle Eastern barbarians happen to be sitting on a lot of oil we (or at least the Europeans) need.

There are plenty of ways to simply stop needing it.  In the 1960's, France's electric grid was primarily powered by oil.  After the 1970's OPEC price shocks, France converted to mostly nuclear power and made oil more or less irrelevant to their grid.

Ground transport is still primarily petroleum-driven, but that doesn't have to continue.  Any number of battery technologies, including sodium nickel chloride and even lead-acid, can knock 50-75% of petroleum demand out of the transport sector.  Siemens has run trials of overhead electric power for trucks.  It works.

Why not just let the Middle East drink their oil, because we don't want it anymore?

Anonymous guest February 01, 2015 12:12 PM  

You can't blame him on foreign policy, he is busy with the 4GW civil war!

Also originally referred to as the "The Cold Civil War" by John Derbyshire.

Blogger Chris Mallory February 01, 2015 12:14 PM  

"A trade power MUST have clear sea lines of communications. And unfortunately, the Middle Eastern barbarians happen to be sitting on a lot of oil we (or at least the Europeans) need."

Yes, the argument that we must tax Americans and send them overseas to die so the multi-national corporations can keep shipping American jobs overseas.

If the Euros need the oil, let them fight to get it.

Blogger Vox February 01, 2015 12:15 PM  

Sorry, Vox. Our ability to disengage is limited. A trade power MUST have clear sea lines of communications.

Don't be ridiculous. Permitting the West to be destroyed in order to maintain sea lines of communications is astonishingly bad geostrategy. The West can survive easily with reduced GDP. It cannot survive an invasion and conquest.

OpenID simplytimothy February 01, 2015 12:15 PM  

From later in the Noonan piece

Mr. Kissinger: “In our national experience . . . we have trouble doing a national strategy” because we have been secure behind two big oceans. We see ourselves as a people who respond to immediate, specific challenges and then go home. But foreign policy today is not a series of discrete events, it is a question of continuous strategy in the world.

I read that as "always at war"; I don't like it.

Also, why did national strategy change? Because we imported some muslims into our country who hijacked some planes? It seems to me the problem is one of not utilizing those oceans and importing trouble instead.

We have devolved from a free nation to a surveilance/police state and thousands of good men have died for what exactly? Strategy?

Fortress America sounds very appealing to me; should it not?







Anonymous fish February 01, 2015 12:19 PM  

The West needs to adopt a siege mentality, expel the non-Westerners, and let the fire burn itself out.

You should bill the State Department for this. Submit a 1200 page report full of eye glazing, mind numbing bureaucrateze and print this in bold on the last page.

Anybody know what they paid Gruber for his nonsense....at least this policy stands a chance of benefiting the US in the longer term.

Anonymous PA February 01, 2015 12:31 PM  

A few days ago Code Pink stormed a congressional meeting attended by Kissinger and the most ignominious man in American politics, John McCain, jumped to Kissinger's defense and called them "scum."

Who was it that once quipped, "pity they both can't lies."

Anonymous PA February 01, 2015 12:32 PM  

"Pity they both can't LOSE"

Anonymous Anonymous February 01, 2015 12:35 PM  

"expel the non-Westerners,"


Can we start in Ferguson?

- Trayvon

Anonymous Curtis February 01, 2015 12:39 PM  

Because really, the State Dept., CIA, ABC, and all their various - wink-wink - NGO's, really really believed that by meddling in Libya and Syria, crying havoc and let slip the dogs of Jihad, the glorious freedum bells of democracy would reign.

Face it. Our government is responsible for breaking the Jihad Genie bottle open. Just like it is responsible for the Ukraine mess. At least with Ukraine, we have a pretty good idea, the why.

The question isn't what should we do about it, but, why? Why did we do it in the first place?

Why would we overthrow by proxy these governments knowing full well that the vacuum we created would not be filled by people of the habit of kissing American ass? If anyone wants to say we broke it and now we have to fix it, that's fine. But why did we break it in the first place? What was/is the outcome they predicted?

And remember, while Obama may be the sitting president after and while this all happened, this was all planned before his watch. Gen. Wesley Clark made that very clear. 7 countries in 5 years. Starting with Iraq, and then Syria, Lebanon, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and, finishing off, Iran.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 01, 2015 12:43 PM  

simplytimothy: "Fortress America sounds very appealing to me; should it not?"

Of course it should.

You need The Tragedy of Great Power Politics by John J. Mearsheimer.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 01, 2015 12:46 PM  

simplytimothy: "I read that as "always at war"; I don't like it."

Your reading is fine, and of course you shouldn't like it.

Blogger JaimeInTexas February 01, 2015 12:54 PM  

Did anything that these "experts" state not apply to the late 18th and early 19th centuries? Pick any part of any century.

Blogger JaimeInTexas February 01, 2015 12:56 PM  

"But what about the Christians being slaughtered by ISIS and Boko Haram? Should the West help them out? How?"

This is making an equivalency between the government and Christians.

We Christians are free, OK, mostly free, to support whatever cause they wish. We do not have the authority to force others to do our bidding.

Blogger LP 999/Eliza February 01, 2015 1:03 PM  

You warring wicked perverse generation, you aborted gen x and yet you still want more blood?


Blogger Chris Mallory February 01, 2015 1:11 PM  

"Why would we overthrow by proxy these governments knowing full well that the vacuum we created would not be filled by people of the habit of kissing American ass?"

Because if the Muzzies are fighting each other, they are not uniting to push a certain nation into the sea.

Anonymous A Visitor February 01, 2015 1:14 PM  

"You need The Tragedy of Great Power Politics by John J. Mearsheimer."

The stopping power of water is the central premise of that book. It was one of the first ones I had to read in grad school. Mearsheimer is right in some contexts and wrong in others.

I'd like to see us disengage to the extent that we can and not just from the ME. However, who would take our place in the vacuum? What would their intentions be?

Blogger James Dixon February 01, 2015 1:24 PM  

> If America attempts to disengage from this dangerous world it will only make all the turmoil worse.

And? Why should we care? Unless it's a threat to us, it's none of our business.

> But what about the Christians being slaughtered by ISIS and Boko Haram? Should the West help them out? How?

Our assistance should be limited to offering them the means to defend themselves.

> I have a hard time believing Kissinger is THAT historically ignorant.

It not a case of ignorance. It's a case of willful blindness.

> Sorry, Vox. Our ability to disengage is limited. A trade power MUST have clear sea lines of communications.

And? Where is that being impacted?

> And unfortunately, the Middle Eastern barbarians happen to be sitting on a lot of oil we (or at least the Europeans) need.

No, we don't. Europe may, but that's their problem, no ours. We have more than enough energy resources to provide for ourselves.





Blogger James Dixon February 01, 2015 1:31 PM  

> However, who would take our place in the vacuum? What would their intentions be?

No one currently has the capability to take our place. China would like too, but the attempt would break them, as it's broken us. What would happen would be a set of regional powers, each providing order in their sphere of influence.

Anonymous 11B February 01, 2015 1:35 PM  

I didn't read their testimony, but I would wager immigration never came up.

Anonymous Daniel February 01, 2015 1:45 PM  

I'd like to see us disengage to the extent that we can and not just from the ME. However, who would take our place in the vacuum? What would their intentions be?

Who really cares? When we took our place in the "vacuum" the only thing that sucked was us. You really think another power with designs on using the ME to their advantage would not similarly get stuck in the tar baby?

Our job would be to pat them on the back and wish them good luck.

Blogger Al Cibiades February 01, 2015 1:57 PM  

Is it reasonable to push for Mr. Lind as Secretary of Defense or at least the Marine Corps in a future Republican administration? And does anyone know if he'd want the job?

Blogger Al Cibiades February 01, 2015 2:02 PM  

@fish that bit about billing the government. That's some geniusly funny ass shit!

Anonymous Curtis February 01, 2015 2:07 PM  

Because if the Muzzies are fighting each other, they are not uniting to push a certain nation into the sea.

BS.

So the plan was to oust Assad, Gaddafi, and other ME/Persia/N. African leaders and create a power vacuum ripe for Jihad that will eventually create a safe haven for that certain nation. Brilliant. Sure.

Blogger Rantor February 01, 2015 2:07 PM  

Worried about Christians in Syria and Iraq? Guess what, they were better off under Assad and Hussein, I wonder what nation changed that. I'll take US Intervention for 200 Alex!

Libya, Egypt, both better off under Mubarek adn Kaddafi.

Lets go back to the 1940s... Nagasaki was the most Christian city in Japan, what happened to them?

I get the feeling that the US hasn't supported international Christianity for a long while. And I am not certain the situation would improve if we sent a division to Northern Nigeria to hunt Boko Haram... I could be wrong, but history seems to indicate otherwise

Anonymous A Reader February 01, 2015 2:10 PM  

Concerning Middle East policy, I think that Sarah Palin put it well: Let Allah sort it out.

Wise advice, which, alas, will not endear her to the powerbrokers in the Republican Party.

Blogger Pravda Zvíťazí February 01, 2015 2:15 PM  

@Titus Didius Tacitus
"The best gift the West could give Christians globally would be a solid promise that violent acts of self-defense would not trigger an intervention in which Christian would (as usual) be devastated."

Very true. It's shocking to me the extent to which people utterly unserved by our current social/political structure will make apologies for the US at the drop of the hat so long as its actions take place outside of our soil.

@Antonio From Spain
"'Islam is what it is, but it would not not be resurgent and aggressively expansionary if the British, followed by the Americans, had not made it possible through their insanely inept Middle East policies.'

Vox, I think the West will eventually conclude the opposite."

Excellent comment, but I think Vox did manage to sum that part of it up by saying, "Islam is what it is." Islam is what it is, which is what it was, which is what it always will be, until it is no more. However, it could have been that alone and isolated had Anglo-America not kicked sand in their faces and opened up all the doors to them. Tours, the Crusades, the Reconquista, Lepanto, Vienna, all these things were inevitable; what will come next was not.

Anonymous p-dawg February 01, 2015 2:20 PM  

"If America attempts to disengage from this dangerous world it will only make all the turmoil worse."

Not for America. And if we follow the globalist lead, it's certainly not going to get better for us, which means it'll either get worse for the rest of the world, or worse for the rest of the world AND America. I mean, maybe I'm wrong and those aren't the options on offer, but if they are, then I know which one I would choose.

Anonymous Anonymous February 01, 2015 2:42 PM  

RE: Pompous Pontification on Fighting Monks

Mr. Earl wrote in part: "Should the West help them out? How?"

Mr. Vox answered in part: "If they can't bother to defend themselves, why should the West?"

IMO the Western Leadership is no longer Christian, indeed I would describe it as anti-Christian. Also IMO I do not see how Western Militaries can effectively intervene in West Africa against the current threat (I have a bit of experience there as both a solider and private sector.)

However in the 5th Century AD the Armenian Church organized several Order of Monks who while taking the triple vow of poverty, obedience and chastity in imitation of the life of Jesus Christ also bore arms in defense against the invading Persian Fire Worshipers.

Between the Fall of Jerusalem and the Protestant Reformation the Vatican approved the Rule of Life for about 100 military orders. Local Bishops also approved the Rules for smaller Orders to defend their own Dioceses.

Although the Military Orders were small, indeed tiny, The Templars at their height, world wide, numbered only 3,000 of which about 1/3 were noncombatant Monks) they led much larger forces. For example at Krak de Cheval (Fort of the Horsemen) the garrison numbered well over 2,000 but only @ 60 were Monks from the Hospitalers.

The Nigerrian government and military are incredibly corrupt. And even if they were not their Western style military would, I think, inefficient against the Holy Warriors of Islam.

We should look for answers to defend ourselves from Islam.

Apologies for long post.

God bless

Richard W Comerford

Blogger Chris Mallory February 01, 2015 3:41 PM  

"So the plan was to oust Assad, Gaddafi, and other ME/Persia/N. African leaders and create a power vacuum ripe for Jihad that will eventually create a safe haven for that certain nation. Brilliant. Sure."

Hmm, Gaddafi an Arab/African nationalist with a dislike for Israel. Taken off the board.
Egypt starts showing some spine, brought back under the heel of the military which starts doing Israel's bidding.
Syria, a perennial threat to Israel, now fighting to survive.
Iraq, another Arab nation with an army that could have threatened Israel. Now a broken shell ruled by competing factions.
Yemen a nation hostile to Israel and an official enemy state according to Israeli law, now racked by fighting.

ISIS is an Israeli creation, start to finish.

Anonymous cheddarman February 01, 2015 3:56 PM  

Follow the money: The Wall Street Vampire Squid needs the petrodollar, so America invaded Iraq, toppled Gaddafi, almost toppled Assad in Syria and are trying to topple Putin to eliminate any competition to the petrodollar. We are even sacrificing our own potential energy independence to save the petrodollar. We have stood by and allowed Saudi Arabia to destroy the U.S.fracking industry while we simultaneously guarantee their security.

The adivce of Kissenger et al distilled down to one sentence, is that we continue to prop up the petrodollar and the elites who profit from it, regardless of the cost to the rest of society. I hope these people end up being hung from lamp posts like they deserve.

Blogger Rantor February 01, 2015 4:46 PM  

The petrodollar is dead. Long live the QE-FRN. Speaking fof currency, how about that Euro. Greece is threatening Grexit... and now people in Spain are demonstrating against austerity. Can a socialist-nationalist (can't have it the other way around you know) movement rise up in Spain? Is Spexit in the cards? COuld no one see that tying northern european currencies to southern european currencies would never work? Truth is the countries had to lie and cheat to qualify to join.

Europe may be lucky the Euro came undone so quickly. We've been stuck with the current buck for nearly a century

Anonymous Anubis February 01, 2015 4:50 PM  

"Ok Vox, I'm with you on this to a large degree. But what about the Christians being slaughtered by ISIS and Boko Haram? Should the West help them out? How?"

Kick out the "refugee" Muslims that are being imported with our taxes and do a 1-1 swap for middle east Christians. Refugee Resentment Watch covers how many 3rd world muslims, that even have to be taught how to use a toilet, get brought in via our tax dollars & placed on full benefits, while there are homeless veterans in the US that are fully capable of using toilets. The Boston marathon brothers where imported and placed on welfare + housing benefits & it turned out they beheaded 3 of the left's pet gays that where their neighbors a year before they did the marathon.

Anonymous Anubis February 01, 2015 5:03 PM  

Really all of these interventions have been victims of the equality doctrine, that everyone can be as successful as East Asians & Whites. They should have listened to Nobel Prize winner for discovering DNA Dr James Watson(Crick also wrote that evolution didn't stop at the neck but he died before PC).
“there is no firm reason to anticipate that the intellectual capacities of peoples geographically separated in their evolution should prove to have evolved identically. Our wanting to reserve equal powers of reason as some universal heritage of humanity will not be enough to make it so”” because “all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours – whereas all the testing says not really”,
” because “all our social policies are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours – whereas all the testing says not really”,

Blogger JaimeInTexas February 01, 2015 5:10 PM  

" ISIS is an Israeli creation, start to finish. "

If you mean that elements of the Israeli government quietly kerp that beast from staying penned, I agree.
If you mean it literally, I do not agree.

Anonymous Eric Ashley February 01, 2015 5:20 PM  

Disengagement requires a willingness to suffer mass destruction events in the US, followed by reprisals.

See Maginot Line.

It will work, but realize what you are asking for. You get the Good and the Bad from your choice.

Also, China may be broken, OR we might have the Dutch from one of my alt history shorts. Beijing got 9/11. Six months later, Han troops were cooling their feet in the Suez.

Such a war would put Lind out to pasture. When a Han tank commander orders a city burnt and no quarter because his Arab slave mistress tried to stab him, it's not 4GW.

Anonymous Cheddarman February 01, 2015 5:59 PM  

Rantor,

I think the petrodollar is on its way out as the reserve currency for the world, but it will take a while for it to die. I hope I am wrong, but I would be that it lasts another 10 - 20 years.

Anonymous cheddarman February 01, 2015 6:16 PM  

Eric Ashley, I doubt that a Han tank commander (equivalent of a Sergeant in the U.S. Army, who would command a tank or a squad of 7 - 8 men) would have the authority to burn down a city. Not even a very small city, or village at that.

Blogger James Dixon February 01, 2015 6:47 PM  

> Disengagement requires a willingness to suffer mass destruction events in the US, followed by reprisals.

How is this is different from our current situation?

Anonymous Remnant February 01, 2015 6:51 PM  

"The West needs to adopt a siege mentality, expel the non-Westerners, and let the fire burn itself out."

Does not step 2 - expel the foreigners - present incredibly difficult 4GW challenges?

Those peoples are more prone to , an dun afraid to use, violence.

The armed forces themselves are filled with the very people we wish to expel.

The political classes and even the average Joe are incapable of conceiving and implementing what needs to be done.

Expelling the non-Westerners is going to be a protracted and bloody piece of 4GW business, if it ever happens.

OpenID simplytimothy February 01, 2015 7:15 PM  

The political classes and even the average Joe are incapable of conceiving and implementing what needs to be done.

Operation Wetback was conceived and implemented here once; it can be implemented again; the moral capital required to do so still exists, imho.

Blogger kurt9 February 01, 2015 7:26 PM  

Correct diagnosis, wrong prescription.

You got that right, sport!

Observe that these foreign policy experts are more than a decade behind William Lind, who described these extra-state upheavals in both ON WAR and FOUR GENERATIONS OF MODERN WAR.

And William Lind is a good 5 years behind Ralph Peters, who was talking about these trends before 9/11. The difference is that Peters is not a neo-luddite.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 01, 2015 7:39 PM  

Remnant: "Does not step 2 - expel the foreigners - present incredibly difficult 4GW challenges?"

It does.

As Comrade Stalin said, regarding the incredibly difficult expulsion of some well-armed, well-trained and militarily active foreigners:

"Either we do it, or they crush us."

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 01, 2015 7:48 PM  

Pravda Zvítazí: "It's shocking to me the extent to which people utterly unserved by our current social/political structure will make apologies for the US at the drop of the hat so long as its actions take place outside of our soil."

They are mentally living in a world in which the state was our collective survival strategy. We have lost the state. The state is now our enemy. We need to internalize that.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 01, 2015 8:07 PM  

A Visitor: "Mearsheimer is right in some contexts and wrong in others."

I too agree with him in some contexts and disagree in others. Whence comes this "nationalities problem" that appears from time to time, like a witch at a wedding, to announce that things aren't going to go according to plan? Living in cultural Marxist academia, John J. Mearsheimer wants nothing to do with that; he prefers to stick with his billiard balls, varying only by size, and with the sources of their unity and wealth (or lack of either) remaining unexplained.

But he's still the man, and the reason why is, he's trying in good faith. He makes everything as simple as it can be and produces by a clear, rational path real strategies that are in the national security interests of those that pursue them.

His superiority is hilariously great compared to the establishment, which essentially wants to subordinate Washington and the world to Jerusalem and Tel Aviv, at whatever cost in frankness, simplicity, and usefulness to the people that strategic advice is proffered to. Mearsheimer produces theoretically based strategy; the others produce squid ink.

Anonymous Cheddarman February 01, 2015 8:26 PM  

"And William Lind is a good 5 years behind Ralph Peters, who was talking about these trends before 9/11. The difference is that Peters is not a neo-luddite." - Kurt9

and you would be wrong Kurt9, Lind wrote an article on 4th generation warfare for the marine corps gazette in 1989, about 12 years before 9/11. Please do your homework before you make a statement like that here.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 01, 2015 8:41 PM  

The thing is, grand strategy is brutally simple. That's why Mearsheimer's simplifying approach works so well.

Some people will hit on correct solutions, naturally, by common sense. But, lacking theory, they are naturally timid; they can be bluffed, they can be put off the scent.

simplytimothy: "Fortress America sounds very appealing to me; should it not?"

This is where an honest strategist like Mearsheimer steps in with a "Hell, yes!" and clear explanations of why that's so and how things have worked so far. Then, with the historic context clear and the light of theory shining brightly, the client is no longer in danger of being bluffed or cajoled out of his safe, correct solution.

When the "strategists" make national security grand strategy sound like some almost mystical, complicated thing that they can see in the crystal ball and you can't, and you should just trust them, that's when your trust in them should crater.

Also recommended reading: The Mirrors of Tuzun Thune by Robert E. Howard.

Anonymous Eric Ashley February 01, 2015 11:32 PM  

Fair enough, say a squadron of fourteen tanks or some other roughly sized unit.

Neoconism is an attempt to engage them over there, to attack them in their hidey holes so they don't have the luxury of time, to in the end create a world of peaceful liberal democracies because the other possibility of terrorist groups and even single madmen having access to WMD is too terrifying.

Now, one can argue that this is a fools' hope, but its certainly not a stoic willingness to suffer.

I find an interesting parallel between Vox's 'any person can blow up their marriage' and his foreign policy.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 02, 2015 1:13 AM  

Eric Ashley: "Now, one can argue that this is a fools' hope, but its certainly not a stoic willingness to suffer."

I do not accuse William Kristol and his ethnic kin of excessive willingness to suffer. Nor of being stoics, literally or figuratively.

Their policy of attacking Muslims over there while continuing to invite them to settle here is about the worst possible for the white nations the neocons inhabit, influence and injure. That is the problem.

Anonymous jm February 02, 2015 9:26 AM  

"We are living through a moment of monumental world change." and "Old orders are collapsing..." makes me think of Strauss and Howe's Fourth Turning, published in 1997, I think.

Anonymous Eric Ashley February 02, 2015 10:03 AM  

Titus, my counsel to be stoic is for Libertarians advocating disengagement. If their policy in enacted, it will necessitate stoicism.

And it is one of the best critiques of the current establishment is that they argue for a way past a danger, but import that very danger into their own land.

As you may remember, my views hold forth the distinct possibility of worse than a few mass events. Nuclear and biological civil war on the American continent is a distinct possibility.

I do favor kicking out the lunatics, but while it may lessen the disorder, it won't solve it. And t hat was one of the big advantages of Neoconism: it offered a solution, even if in retrospect, it was a false solution.

Clear as mud?

And yes, Strauss and Howe were great.

Anonymous Titus Didius Tacitus February 02, 2015 12:14 PM  

Eric Ashley: "Titus, my counsel to be stoic is for Libertarians advocating disengagement. If their policy in enacted, it will necessitate stoicism."

OK.

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