February 26, 2008
Watcher Countdown - Five! "The Ancient of Weeks"
These last five posts in my tenure on the Watcher's Council will necessarily be brief (and, as you see, often late -- this is for the Watcher post of February 8th!) So forgive me for wasting less of your valuable time than normal...
The winner this week begins his post by saying, "no one's ever going to read this all. But what the hell." Shamefacedly, I must confess it was certainly true in my case! While Callimachus' writing is up to his usual high standards, I find the subject-matter -- ruminations on the Confederate battle flag -- simply tedious, despite the fact that I was born and raised in the South (of California, that is):
- A Short Hitch, by Done With Mirrors.
Rather, we voted for two posts that had absolutely nothing to do with old Stars and Bars:
- Obama Disparages the Military & Gets a Pass On Iraq From Fox News, by Wolf Howling;
- Cutting Off Berkeley, by Rhymes With Right.
In the first, Mr. Howling notes that Barack Obama continues to call our presence in Iraq an "occupation;" in fact, it ceased being an occupation when Saddam Hussein's Baathist government fell, and a new government was democratically elected -- and asked us to stay to fight against the terrorist insurgents trying to tear down what the Iraqi people built. Evidently, Sen. Obama is unaware of this history. (I wonder how he would have done on that "quiz" survey that Common Core gave to random 17 year olds?)
In the Rhymes With Right post, Greg notes with enthusiasm Sen. Jim DeMint's (R-SC, 100%) quest to eliminate from the Senate appropriations process any and all "earmarks" for the city of Berkeley, California... on grounds that if, as the city council wrote in a letter, the United States Marines were "unwelcome intruders" in their fair city -- then the city was not entitled to free money from the federal government they reject.
Sounds good to me!
Our own entry tied for last place... but at least we were spared the ignominy of getting no votes at all.
We did rather better in the Nouncil vote, with our number-one vote winning, and our number-two tying for third. (Our own Nouncil nomination got only one vote... and it wasn't even from us!)
- Changing the Organizational Culture (Updated), by Small Wars Journal.
LG William B. Caldwell urges us to become real players in the new world of communications via the internet, something our terrorist enemies have already done. To that end, he proposes we take advantage of the greatest strength of the American military: Not our technology (though that is extraordinary), nor our training (excellent as it is), but the trust and authority we have always invested in our individual soldiers -- as individuals -- to make decisions and take personal responsibility for their areas of operation.
This is something no other national military does to anywhere near the degree we do; most allow their lower-level members no authority whatsoever without orders from higher up... even when they come under attack. Caldwell urges us to allow and even encourage soldiers to post YouTube videos, blogposts, and suchlike; and dang, but that's a great and very American idea!
In our other pick, Oliver Kamm reviews a book on Iraq by Jonathan Steele, and finds that it comes up short:
- Our Policy In Iraq, by Oliver Kamm.
Full Monty Watcher
See him in all his glory here!
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, February 26, 2008, at the time of 3:15 PM
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