How to Break An Officer-Bump

Young officers are like moldable clay; they take lessons to heart fast.  Some of them will be amazing, most will be good, and then you will have a lot of bad.  It is easy for them to become enraptured by their own image when they’re doing well; it is even easier for them to fall flat on their face.  How do I know this?  I’ve been there.  When a new officer comes into the FORCE/FLEET he needs to be embraced by the battalion and company level organizations he is a part of.  In the Army we tend to have a […]

Speech by General (Retired) Mattis

Follow this link, great speech by“Mad Dog” Mattis.  Link is now fixed.

George C. Marshall: Global Commander

Good read here– a transcript of a very good lecture given, of all strange places, at the Air Force Academy. What were the roads he followed to reach this end? One was that of the good soldier who learned his trade and another of an officer with a burning desire to know and the willingness to see problems whole. It is the story of a man who learned to control and order his own life, gaining through his personal struggle the secret of commanding men. His early experience did not provide special training for global leadership. He often said that […]

Tarnished Brass? (UPDATED)

(Link has been fixed!) OUCH. Foreign Policy lays out the turmoil on “Tamer.” But with less than a year left in Amos’s tenure as commandant, it is his own ethics that have been called into question by everyone from rank-and-file troops to members of Congress. The accusations range from abuse of power, to illegally classifying evidence to cover up mistakes, to squashing Marines with the temerity to protest. The office of the commandant, typically revered by Marines across the world and many on Capitol Hill, remains under investigation by the Defense Department’s inspector general and is being battered by the […]

Stray Voltage on the Army and USMA

There has been a spate of articles on the state of the Army in the past several weeks, which I have been desirous of commenting upon.  There have been too many things of greater importance that have distracted me, but these two which both appeared in the Washington Post within the last two days. The first entitled “Why The Army Should Fire some Generals and Promote Some Captains” is I believe spot on.  I am of the generation or half generation ahead of the bunch he proposes firing.  We are baby boomers, we believe we are infallible, that we posses […]

Hold up the mirror

Behaviour is the mirror in which everyone shows their image.     – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe   Op-for presented a series of posts featuring toxicity in leadership, corruption in acquisitions, and servicemembers who cheated on their competency examinations. From each of these posts, of which Townie’s is the latest lagniappe, one has to wonder who holds the mirror up for introspection? For an examination of self and a determination of one’s own boundary?   No one put a gun to the head of those servicemembers and told them to lie, to cheat, to steal, and to tolerate the putrefaction of […]

Some Thoughts on the Crisis in Missiles in the USAF

A good friend, and a recently retired USAF Missile officer sent me some thoughts on the on-going troubles in the USAF missile community. No need to walk down the list of ICBM cock ups. You’ve already seen ‘em and I don’t want to list them. So what’s happening out there in the cold white north? Like Patton said, ‘a blind man could see it.’ Leadership. Capital “L” leadership. ICBM commanders don’t practice it, they don’t live it, and they don’t love it. These clowns wouldn’t know leadership if it grabbed their wife on the ass.  Missileers are quality troops, smart, […]

Cheating and Drugs in the Nuclear Force

Our Air Force: cheating and drugs and fingers on the trigger in the nuclear force. Where in the samhill are the adults?

Air Force Times: “Morale is High in Nuclear Force”

This is NOT from DuffelBlog, but I had to read it closely and check the URL to make sure. An Air Force officer asserts that things, are on the whole, just fine in the nuclear force: The article concerning trouble in the intercontinental ballistic missile community [“ ‘Burnout’ in the nuclear force,” Dec. 2] mischaracterizes the atmosphere within the community as one of malaise and “burnout.” As a former missile squadron commander, I can tell you that impression of the missile force is inaccurate. The problem stems from a Rand study, commissioned by the Air Force, to look objectively at […]

Donald Rumsfeld, A Documentary

I ran across the trailer for the Documentary: The Unknown Known.  The title of the documentary comes from a DoD briefing in February of 2002 when he famously said: “There are known knowns.”  It was directed by Academy Award winner Errol Morris whom also directed The Fog of War, which was an excellent documentary about the life of Robert McNamara. I’m unsure how I will take this, I grew up in the shadow of war following, 11 SEP 2001.  However, I will say I was well read, knowing of the Neo-Conservative movement and all of the folks that were in […]