Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Taliban threatens greater amount of combat

I pulled this from CNN.COM. (4/29/09)

"A Taliban leader has instructed fighters in Afghanistan to target U.S. and other coalition troops in response to the United States sending more troops into the war."

Afghanistan is an environment not suited for mechanized units. However, if our enemy wishes to raise the amount of combat with our armed forces, we should be encouraged. Our strengths are the greater firepower of our units and overall numbers. We can withstand far greater losses in a much shorter period of time than our enemy can. We can inflict much greater losses upon our enemy than we lose. Therefore, increased combat operations will be to our advantage. What I am worried about is the overall quiet that has occurred during the past year or two.

The war has become quieter than what was going on in Iraq two years ago. The cutback our enemy has implemented in the support of the war in Iraq has allowed them to recover somewhat. President Obama is correct in that we need to initiate new combat with our enemy. I would not choose Afghanistan, but I am not president either.

What I am worried about with our new commander-in-chief is that he may not understand how attrition is on our side and is necessary for us to win the war. We cannot allow our enemy to recover after each battle.

President Lincoln knew that the North outnumbered the South 3 to 1. He wanted his generals to ‘do the math’ and initiate combat. He continually pressed his generals to keep attacking. They would attack and after being stopped, or defeated, they would back off and allow the South time to recover from each battle. Ultimately, President Lincoln found General Grant who did not stop initiating combat. He was called a butcher for all of the combat he started. However, this activity eventually wore down the army of Northern Virginia.

All wars are different. However, the fundamentals of combat and warfare are well known and do not change all that much. One distinct war winner is to run the other side out of men. Because our enemy is an irregular army, we will have to keep pressing the issue by enlarging the area of conflict. If we must, we will have to engage our enemies in other countries where the military lacks the ability to defeat our enemy openly. Another fundamental rule of warfare is that the side that is able to escalate the violence to a level that the other side either cannot or will not match wins wars. It can only be a matter of time before our enemy obtains WMD. It will be well worth waging just about any amount of conventional warfare in order to prevent our enemy from obtaining and deploying any of them. By keeping the pressure on them, we can dry up the resources that are required to either build their own, or purchase them.

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