April 1, 2007  

Reality check

God bless ralph Peters! Agree or no, his thought-provoking reality checks based on common sense and real history spark the discussions needed to get key leadership to actually, well, think.

If you do a critical analysis on most organizations in the U.S. today, you will find the common thread is that many (particularly those struggling in the real world) suffer from believing their own press releases. From our media to our military academics to our politicians we see the theme repeated: “I have two master’s degrees and a Ph.D., I’ve thought this out, I’ve spent lots of time and money proving my point, which all my peers (and subordinates) support, and I’ll be damned if I’m going to abandon my position just because some silly contradictory facts get in the way.”

If you want to look at weaponry from Peters’ perspective, consider the analogy that the only difference between our most sophisticated U. S. weapons systems and a suicide bomber are the price tag and the fact that you don’t need to forge a passport to get to the target. Both weapons are hard to detect, hit targets with a high degree of reliability, can be (and have been) employed worldwide, result in damage that makes the TV news instantly, strike terror in the hearts of the victims that survive and once detected are generally defeated quickly with concentrated firepower.

Keep writing, Ralph Peters — someone has to break the Kool-Aid pitcher.

Col. Stan Osserman, Hawaii Air National Guard

Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii