Monday, February 14, 2005

Barnett on Barnett (No relation)

Dean Barnett reminds that much of President Bush's foreign policy seems similar to that proposed by Thomas P.M. Barnett in his book The Pentagon's New Map. I'd recommend the book, having read it myself. On the particular point of restructuring the military, Thomas Barnett believes that we should have a sort of "fighting" force (he terms this the Leviathan) and an occupation force (he terms this System Administration). Thomas Barnett also believes that Defense Secretary Rumsfeld is the right man to effect these changes.
Rumsfeld is moving the pile: he wants Special Ops Command to focus on killing terrorists (and he wants them to have their own dedicated intell units); he wants Civil Affairs out of SOCOM and back in the Army, which should focus a whole lot more on post-conflict stabilization and reconstruction (something it is loathe to do); he wants the Army and Marines to do more mil-mil training, again freeing up SOCOM's trigger-pullers to focus on killing terrorists; and he want a general shift away from planning for conventional wars to a more balanced approach that highlights the need to be able to handle post-war foes like insurgencies.

This is why Rumsfeld needs to stay. He basically "gets" the challenge and the need for change, and he'll push the uniformed services to get it done.

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