Friday, February 15, 2019

You Gotta Love Tucker.

Just as I finished my expose' on all kinds of Russian military so called "experts" (pardon me--frauds) nine days ago, Tucker Carlson started asking those most important, bottom-line, expertise questions about America's very own military "experts" such as Max Boot and Bill Kristol in The American Conservative. Tucker gets to heavy artillery really fast: 
One thing that every late-stage ruling class has in common is a high tolerance for mediocrity. Standards decline, the edges fray, but nobody in charge seems to notice. They’re happy in their sinecures and getting richer. In a culture like this, there’s no penalty for being wrong. The talentless prosper, rising inexorably toward positions of greater power, and breaking things along the way. It happened to the Ottomans. Max Boot is living proof that it’s happening in America. Boot is a professional foreign policy expert, a job category that doesn’t exist outside of a select number of cities. Boot has degrees from Berkeley and Yale, and is a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations. He has written a number of books and countless newspaper columns on foreign affairs and military history. The International Institute for Strategic Studies, an influential British think tank, describes Boot as one of the “world’s leading authorities on armed conflict.” None of this, it turns out, means anything. The professional requirements for being one of the world’s Leading Authorities on Armed Conflict do not include relevant experience with armed conflict. Leading authorities on the subject don’t need a track record of wise assessments or accurate predictions. All that’s required are the circular recommendations of fellow credential holders. If other Leading Authorities on Armed Conflict induct you into their ranks, you’re in. That’s good news for Max Boot.
The very notion that one must have academic (yes, military sciences are really physics-mathematics and engineering sciences in the foundation) and military, especially command, experience to even utter a sensible word on anything related to armed conflict, somehow doesn't exist in modern, post-truth, world. I remember one humanities-"educated" hack who saw weapons only in pictures and who wouldn't know the difference between attrition models on the land and on the sea, preaching to me that cadre officers cannot have good understanding of strategy. So, today, it seems, in order to become a military "expert" one needs a degree in economics or sociology, or in theater. So, Tucker hits target here really well. In general, it is an excellent piece by one of few remaining sane voices in D.C. But in the end Tucker gives a grim assessment of the situation, same way as I am trying to make a case for the last few years: the state of American military science, strategic assessments, military analysis, military history is dire--the field is occupied by insane and illiterate people who pass judgements on subjects they have no clue about and they really don't care. As Tucker notes about another mindless and illiterate war-monger Kristol:
By the spring of 2018, Kristol was considering a run for president himself. He was still making the case for the invasion of Iraq, as well as pushing for a new war, this time in Syria, and maybe in Lebanon and Iran, too. Like most people in Washington, he’d learned nothing at all.
As I said many times, political "scientists", lawyers, most journalists and political "strategists" do not make good "experts" in armed conflict or any other field which requires serious effort in obtaining actual applicable skills. This especially rings true for ones who exist in a Washington's echo chamber which increasingly begins to look like a padded room for violent patients in the asylum.  

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