March 1, 2008  

Back to basics

Retired Maj. Gen. Robert Scales has written an excellent analysis of the issues in “Infantry and national priorities” [December]. But he may have missed certain aspects of two points: technology and training. Concerning technology, the U.S. military has violated the “too rule” — there is just too much technology, to the point that our fighting men and women perceive they cannot function effectively without it. That means that technology should be “selective” in what it offers, and at what price (size, weight, reliability and durability).

Concerning training, it’s supposed to be safe, realistic and measurable. Unfortunately, it may be all of these, except it doesn’t teach how to hunt and kill the enemy. That’s right — we need to teach our fighting men and women how to hunt and kill, because in combat, if you are not the hunter, you are the hunted.

Bottom line: Go back to the basics and train hard.

Lt. Col. Mike Janay, Marine Corps (ret.)