Monday, February 26, 2007

U.S. military scrambles to cover the global chess board

Good article looking at the strains that face the US military in maintaining its current long-term deployments. The way in which General Pace framed how the US armed forces would do is somewhat curious:

"He unwaveringly stated that the armed forces would succeed at any mission ordered by the president; the response would just be slower, less elegant, more dangerous."

Comments on inelegance aside, the article had an interesting sidenote equating strategy with managing risk- something that humanitarian agencies have yet to truly embrace or confront:

"At the end of the day, strategy is the management of risk, whether personal or military strategy," said Jeffrey McCausland, a retired army colonel now a senior fellow at the Carnegie Council in New York. "The question is, how much risk are we willing to live with? We are taking a significant amount of strategic risk today because, if you look at our ground forces, we have pulled almost everything out of the box already. So if a major problem arises somewhere else, what do we turn to?"