Location: Vienna, Virginia, United States

A graduate of Dartmouth College (2005) and Washington and Lee University School of Law (2010). These are my personal blogs, and the musings expressed on them do not reflect the positions of my employer. They do reflect my readings, thoughts, and aspirations, which I figure is good enough.

Sunday, November 07, 2004


Finally, a Topic

Richard, I've sent a link to you for this, and your assignment is as follows - scan the .pdfs for information that would be obviously deducible from The Art of War. I know you have a copy of that lying around somewhere

This link first caught my eye on fark because it mentioned Zerg Rushes, a strategy from Starcraft. A cursory examination of the site reveals that it is in fact about "swarming", a tactic of warfare where an army disperses and strikes in pulses of force, avoiding concentrated attacks and massing only where the enemy is. I've read a bit of it, and it actually reads pretty well, especially the historical parts, if you're into that kind of thing. Mongols and horse-archers and whatnot.

Chapter Five also reads very well because it highlights the shortcomings of our military, despite and due to its reliance on maintaining, at a high cost, a core of heavy attack vehicles. Also, it had the following statement, which I found very prophetic (this was published in 2000).

"Intellience-gathering is the heart of COIN (Counter-Insurgency) operations. The insurgent's knowledge of local terrain and population is his greatest asset. He gains the support of the local population either by force or by popularity - can blend easily with the indigenous population, staying in safe houses and other places" (85).

Obviously we haven't (or didn't) take studies such as this one into account when planning our Iraq strategy. This isn't exactly new information either. We encountered it in Vietnam, we encountered it in Korea. We would have encountered it in Normandy, but that was in France. We could tell who was French because they would surrender immediately. Kidding.

Iraq is so touchy because we have to avoid intimidating civilians, burning shit, and nuking infrastructure - all operations that we normally perform to claim victory. Because that would be . . . terrorism? Because we are there for freedom or something like that. You can't drink freedom, as it does not quench thirst. Nor does it resurrect the relatives you lost in Saddam's regime after America abandoned you the first time. No one doubted that his regime was evil. But we consider Castro evil, and we're just waiting for him to die. Another tumble like the one he had last month and El Guapo is probably done. Technically Ariel Sharon is a war criminal, but we consider him our greatest ally in the Middle East area. Why? Not really because of religion, or politics, or morals. We just have too much money invested in Israel.

But I digress. Any reading on Scythians is cool because they made drinking vessels out of the skulls of their enemies.

Yeah, That's right.



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