Friday, November 27, 2015

Low tech national security

1. Learn the history

2. Speak the language 

3. Listen to the people who live there

All he heard from his generals President Johnson said was “Bomb, bomb, bomb. That’s all you know. Well, I want to know why there’s nothing else. You generals have all been educated at the taxpayers’ expense, and you’re not giving me any ideas and any solutions for this damn little piss-ant country. Now, I don’t need ten generals to come in here ten times and tell me to bomb, I want some solutions, I want some answers.” 
David Halberstam
The Best and the Brightest
Military people can always rationalize almost any problem's becoming military and thus susceptible to a military solution. They dislike interference on the part of the State Department when that Department sees serious political consequences stemming from the use of military force. 
James Gavin
On to Berlin
Then we dropped, hovered, settled down into the purple lz smoke, dozens of children broke from their hootches to run in toward the focus of the landing, the pilot laughing and saying, "Vietnam, man. Bomb 'em and feed 'em, bomb 'em and feed 'em." 
Michael Herr