Mr. Rankin covered every concern and feeling of the submariners whose posts fill up my file. Many of us have contacted our elected representatives, the Secretary of the Navy, the Commanders Submarine Forces Atlantic and Pacific, the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Navy, local newspapers in the areas where submariners are home-ported, and some commentators such as retired Colonel David Hackworth and Rush Limbaugh, in an effort to let them, and others, know how distressed we are with this policy that denigrates the accomplishments of enlisted submariners, past and present. All, so far, have kept the concerns in-house. We have gotten responses about how they "understand how everyone feels and the matter will be looked into." Mr. Rankin has thrown a spotlight on the issue; a spotlight that will illuminate our concerns to a much wider-ranging audience. This wrong-headed, morale-lowering policy must be rescinded immediately.
"CNEF, We Hardly Knew Ye"
(See T. J. McKearney, p. 10, January 1998 Proceedings)
Colonel R. K. Dobson, Jr., U.S. Marine Corps, Director, Doctrine Division, Marine Corps Combat Development Command-"The Marine Corps [is] trying to squirm out from under the Navy's operational control" and is to "blame for the meltdown of the NEF concept," declares Commander McKearney. What's wrong with this portrayal? For starters, it grossly misrepresents the Marine Corps position on the important subject of command and control of naval forces.
The Marine Corps fully supports the development of the concept of naval expeditionary forces. First mentioned in ". . . From the Sea . . ." and later in "Forward . . . From the Sea," a naval expeditionary force organizational construct ultimately may replace the existing naval task force (NTF) and amphibious task force (ATF) entities. Over the past several years, the Marine Corps has included naval expeditionary force discussions in a range of doctrinal publications and embraced the term in our capstone operational concept, "Operational Maneuver from the Sea."
Our objection was not to the naval expeditionary force concept, but to the concept of "Naval Expeditionary Task Force Command and Control (NETF C2)." This arrangement used the existing composite warfare commander (CWC) architecture and subordinated and embedded the commander, landing force within the line of Navy functional warfare commanders. Such an arrangement violated a host of time-tested amphibious doctrinal tenets such as parallel command arrangements and coequal status during planning.
In our view, the CWC architecture needs to be updated to reflect the current operational realities of the littorals. A naval command architecture built exclusively around the carrier battle group may not be appropriate for the wide variety of anticipated power-projection missions. Command relationships must be based on the mission, threat, forces available, and environment. There are situations in which an Aegis cruiser or a large-deck amphib could be the central ship of the naval expeditionary force.
The Marine Corps strongly believes the time is right to expand command relationship options in amphibious doctrine. Joint requirements, Marine Corps service componency, and the operational and tactical realities of operations in the littorals. require that the present relationship-the commander landing force/CATF operational control-only arrangement-be expanded to include the tactical control and support command relationship options.
There is operational precedence for this modification. Between 1991 and 1995, U.S. military forces participated in 51 military operations. All were joint operations. Most occurred in the littorals. Most involved naval forces. Most used the support command relationship. Why? The mission required the command relationship. Clearly, SO-year-old command relationships developed to support a naval campaign must be adjusted to support the current operational realities of the joint force commander's (JFC's) campaign.
Joint doctrinal efforts have been under way for 18 months to revise existing joint amphibious operations doctrine. Those involved in the business of writing doctrine learn quickly that the road to revision is often bumpy and the landscape is not always picturesque. Words matter. Issues are emotional. Change is not always accepted readily. That said, the Marine Corps remains committed to continue working within the joint doctrinal review process and with naval doctrinal entities. We have identified and articulated a service position. We continue to provide substantial input to proposed revisions of Joint Publication 3-02, Joint Doctrine for Amphibious Operations. We want to participate with the Navy in the revision of Naval Warfare Publication (NWP) 3-56, CWC Manual. We will continue to be active participants in all working groups.
What is missing is the Navy's position. What is the Navy's position on command relationships for power-projection operations in the littorals? Several high ranking Navy officers have indicated the Navy will never change the existing operational control-only relationship. Others posit that the carrier battle group will remain the centerpiece of naval command and control. Still others, including Commander McKearney, believe that "seabased operations should always be under the control of a Navy officer" and that "folks on the bridge are professional enough to work out the details."
Such arguments fail to acknowledge that Marine Corps officers are occasionally designated as joint force commanders for maritime operations. Most JFCs prefer command relationship options. The joint operations area has replaced the amphibious objective area in a number of joint exercises and operations. Presently, Third Fleet and I MEF are experimenting with tactical control. These efforts are laudable. However, we cannot move forward on the development of important documents such as NWP 3-56, JP 3-02, and NDP 3, Naval Operations, until the Navy develops a position on naval command relationships in the littorals.
The next 30 to 40 years could be the greatest years in Navy-Marine Corps team history. ". . . From the Sea "Forward . . . From the Sea," "The Navy Operational Concept," and "Operational Maneuver From the Sea" all are steering the Navy-Marine Corps team away from the high seas and into the littorals. Having participated in the Joint Staff sponsored Quadrennial Defense Review series war games last year, I am convinced that our future is in the littorals and that the clear force of choice will be naval expeditionary forces. What remains is for the Navy-Marine Corps team to continue efforts to develop doctrine for naval expeditionary forces that is both flexible and adaptable enough to provide the JFC with a force capable of accomplishing a wide range of military missions.
"Looking for Another Rickover"
(See J. Pietrocini, pp. 57-58, December 1997; P. K. Parker, pp. 14-16, February 1998 Proceedings)
Commander Sandra L. Lawrence, U.S. Navy, Combat Systems Officer, USS Nimitz (CVN-68)-Mr. Pietrocini's comments-that the Navy must develop a chief information officer pipeline, have senior leadership with extensive information systems background, and move away from military-specification information systems-are valid but dated, because the Navy has implemented all three goals.
All carriers now have a combat systems officer, whose functions include those of a chief information officer. The combat systems officer is a senior commander department head who has extensive background in one or more of the combat systems fields, electronic maintenance, communication, or information systems. The combat systems officer has the same responsibilities as a civilian chief of information-to provide information systems to support the command's missions.
The chief information officer pipeline and senior leadership are being developed in the fleet support officer community through its space and electronic "core competency." Fleet support officers have successive tours and continuous education in their core competencies, providing all officers with information systems leadership at all levels of the Navy.
Finally, Mr. Pietrocini states that the Nimitz's sailors in the future will browse the carrier's home page for the plan of the day and send e-mail to loved ones from their berthing spaces.
We do not have network drops in our berthing yet, but our Intranet home page carries the plan of the day and other information needed to run the ship. We do maintain two Internet home pages, and we had more than a million e-mails in the first four months of our current deployment.
"Innovation Can Be Messy"
(See F. G. Hoffman, pp. 46-50, January 1998 Proceedings)
Captain James K. Pernini, U.S. Navy (Retired)-Lieutenant Colonel Hoffman states that there are two schools of thought on military innovation. The school to which he obviously belongs believes that innovation stems from competition among the services for roles and missions.
The second school, which he maligns, "favors increased primacy to joint agencies, and believes that the individual services are not capable of change because they are blinded by parochialism." Thus, with one broad brush, he paints inaccurately all those who favor primacy of a joint perspective as being narrow minded bureaucrats, who strive to control the services rigidly and therefore stifle innovation.
Absent from his narrow categorization is the possibility that there may be another school of thought-one that argues that it is imperative for the services to collaborate and cooperate, and that interservice competition is more harmful than helpful. This school of thought believes that for the U.S. military to prevail in the current strategic environment, the services need to work together closely and harmoniously. To do this requires developing a high degree of mutual trust and understanding.
Competition and what Colonel Hoffman calls "creative destruction" breed the mistrust and the negative parochialism that have often contributed to poor operational results and that led to the Goldwater-Nichols Department of Defense Reorganization Act of 1986. Even Colonel Hoffman's obvious preference for competition and "creative destruction" is caveated by the admonition that competition must be "properly managed." Unfortunately, he does not offer any suggestions how to effect proper management.
Central purposes for Goldwater-Nichols and the resultant appreciation for a joint perspective are to help provide for the proper management of competition between services. In carrying out that management, the Joint Staff is not some disembodied entity made up of Orwellindoctrinated officers slavishly dedicated to rigid joint doctrine, as Colonel Hoffman might have us think.
Our joint staffs are composed of some of the best officers and enlisted personnel the services have to offer. They do not leave their service knowledge and pride behind when they check into joint commands. Instead, they contribute knowledge of their service's strengths and weaknesses in the development of a joint perspective. They are dedicated to the difficult and challenging task of bringing service resources and capabilities together in a synergistic manner, to achieve the best results for the nation.
Effective joint-duty officers value and celebrate service differences and recognize that only through diversity can true synergy evolve. Rather than stifle innovation, joint staffs embrace it. Joint staffs must be innovative as they seek the best solutions to complex issues through the collaboration and coordination of services, while at the same time ensuring that our competitive energies are focused more appropriately on potential enemies.
I have discussed my view with Colonel Hoffman, and I guess one could say we agree to disagree. I think we both would agree that the challenge for the U.S. military is to determine how best to gain the advantages of centralized command and control while maintaining the benefits of decentralized execution. This means that joint organizations need to establish unity of effort, even while allowing for autonomous and independent actions by the services. Colonel Hoffman's article raises several important issues along these lines that warrant further discussion and debate in forums such as Proceedings.
The Air Force Memorial
(See H. L. Elman, p. 12, January 1998 Proceedings)
Colonel Michael A. Nassr, U.S. Air Force (Retired)-Colonel Elman implies that nearly all Air Force retirees in the Washington, D.C., area believe the approved Air Force Memorial will interfere with or degrade the Marine Corps War Memorial. I question that contention, but admit that many opinions have been formed based in disinformation. I would like to share some of the myths so that more people will not be misled by Colonel Elman's "informal surveys" and uninformed impressions.
Myth: The Air Force suddenly and inconsiderately decided to place its memorial next to the Marine Memorial.
Facts: The Air Force Memorial plan was approved by the key oversight commissions after a process that took more than five years, including courtesy notifications to the Marine Corps leadership-one in 1994, another in 1996. No objections were raised on either occasion.
Myth: The Air Force Memorial is a museum that will interfere with and encroach upon the Iwo Jima Monument, only 300 feet away.
Facts: Three separate commissions have determined that the Air Force Memorial will not encroach upon neighboring monuments. It is a memorial, not a museum, with a simple one-level structure above ground and a planned area for reflection below ground. The memorial will be more than 500 feet from the periphery of the eight-acre Iwo Jima site, down a hill and behind a screen of mature trees that will be retained. Observers standing at the memorial site agree that the Iwo Jima Memorial barely is visible through the trees. The height of the Iwo Jima monument is 78 feet above ground; the Air Force Memorial 50 feet.
Myth: The "original" site proposed near the Air and Space Museum would be far more appropriate,
Facts: The Arlington Ridge site near Iwo Jima was the first and only choice of the Air Force Memorial Foundation. It long had been planned as a memorial site and was presented as an available site by the National Park Service. In fact, in 1953, when the present site of the Marine Memorial was approved, everyone was well aware of plans for erection of the Netherlands Carillon and a "future memorial" on what is known as the 25-acre Nevius tract. The Marine Memorial's share of the land amounts to eight acres (with the surrounding trees). In recent testimony to a House subcommittee, the chairman of the Commission of Fine Arts explained that, before the Marine Memorial was built in 1954, their planner kept coming back for more land-from two acres to four, then eight. As a matter of comparison, the Air Force Memorial is a mere two acres. Myth: The Air Force Memorial will somehow degrade the Marine Corps War Memorial.
Facts: A key consideration during the entire approval process was to ensure that the sanctity and dignity of the Iwo Jima Memorial would be respected. This was an obvious concern on the minds of many members who served on three separate approval organizations-the National Capital Memorial Commission, the National Capital Planning Commission, and the Commission of Fine Arts. All agreed that the current plans will not detract from the Iwo Jima Memorial. In fact, each service memorial will benefit by enabling more Americans to visit both memorials conveniently.
It is regrettable that a controversy has arisen and that it has been fueled with one-sided disinformation. Washington is a city of monuments, and Arlington Ridge is a war and service memorial area. Airmen and Marines have trained together and fought together. Surely they can be memorialized together on the same 25acre ridge, with each service memorial in its own distinct place.
(See A. K. Cebrowski and J. J. Garstka, pp. 2835, January 1998; J. Tonning, pp. 6, February 1998 Proceedings)
Lieutenant Colonel Kenneth W. Estes, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired)-The authors' smugness over technology reflects the current euphoric U.S. situation-a burgeoning economy and technological superiority. Their essay, as does other revolution-in-military-affairs (RMA) talk, tends to obscure the possibility that technological advances may not be realized in combat any more than they were in previous eras of general technological advances. More and more, our leadership confuses contingency operations (e.g., the "Taiwan Strait crisis") with warfare. Nor will our key lack of understanding of our enemies ever be overcome by templating and other self-delusions.
The continuing requirement for human command, decision, and action will not be reduced-only assisted-with the growth of technology. Social, political, and demographic trends remain equally important as general technology. The authors' analogies of warfare and business practices strike me as no more convincing than the old sports comparisons of my military education. Happily, errors on our and others' parts may cause limited losses. Total war has become unaffordable, and that trend now extends to midintensity conflict. But, military violence will continue to be affordable-hence the need for continuing development.
The technology of Napoleon I was available to Frederick II of Prussia, but to no avail. Forces in the 1830-1860 generation were unable to capitalize on emerging technologies of the iron and steam ages, and so on. The U.S. Navy understandably is happy with the RMA, as its peacetime and wartime missions vary little, given no probability of war at sea. Of course, the new submarine combat system, Link 16, and the cooperative engagement concept are most useful in war at sea. But the U.S. Navy has not had an enemy for such conflict since 1945, and the Imperial Japanese Navy-despite Tom Clancy fantasies will not return to the scope for another two generations. Submarines and carrier battle groups will not prevent wars, destabilizing confrontations, or deal with other forms of incipient violence. But few of these will prove really dangerous. Further options for raider versus trader nations (we were the latter until 1898) are evaporating. The Russians have faced up to this, to the utter disgust of their super-patriots. Occidental decline and Asian advances in population may prove more problematic than RMA, especially as we reduce level-of-effort munitions in our eagerness for sophistication.
I suspect that real capitalization of the RMA and its crowning achievements in C^sup 4^ISR architecture probably will await the evolution of military robotics, itself curiously resisted by military tradition and leadership.
For the moment, I'd like to have the authors reconsider the apparent novelty of having artillery (which is what ATACMS is) strike air defenses, leaving the air free to attack more vulnerable targets. Instead, maybe we'd better work on making Link 16 and Aegis work after 0001 on 1 January 2000.
"No Androgynous Officers"
(See J. P. Brickman, pp. 64-66, January 1998 Proceedings)
Master Sergeant Ronny R. Rohrer, U.S. Marine Corps-While Ms. Brickman offers some great examples of what academies and military schools can do to admit women, train them on an equal basis, and treat them in a fair and unbiased manner, she cannot expect a military academy to copy what a federal service academy does and make it work the same way.
I agree that men should not give up their maleness-nor should women give up their femaleness-as they enter one of the military academies, VMI, or The Citadel-or even when they enlist in one of the armed services. That will give the armed forces the diversity we will use to move into the 21 st century. I disagree with the need to find a mechanism to circumvent the chain of command. It exists for a compelling reason-good order and discipline. There are mechanisms within the chain of command to handle problems, and it is just a matter of ensuring that students are aware of these mechanisms and how to use them.
I also agree that too much human relations training can create backlash, and that men and women should be held equally accountable for their actions. I agree with Ms. Brickman that recruiting women students should be assiduous, if she means diligently and carefully. But standards cannot be sacrificed for the sake of numbers. Ratios are important, but quantity cannot come at the expense of quality. Women's progress should be monitored and preparations made to meet changing needs and to capitalize on the evolution and growth opportunities.
More female role models are important for all-not just the students but the faculty as well. Females in leadership positions demonstrate the services' and the service academies' faith in these instructors and officers to hold these positions. We should embrace the tension that follows the integration-a catalyst that forces us to adapt, to improvise, and to overcome. The metamorphosis will not come without some pain. A haven is what is needed-if this means a place that offers favorable opportunity or conditions. For that is what we should offer those who enter the academies or the services.
I cannot speak for all services on the matter of self-esteem; however, from my experience in the Marine Corps, self-esteem is essential to any Marine's success. Self-reliance and self-confidence are the foundation of every Marine, private to general. These elements of self-esteem are the intangibles that we develop within each new recruit, officer candidate, and midshipman. I find it incomprehensible that while Marine enlisted recruiters were describing the essential elements of self-reliance and self-confidence to young prospective recruits and then drill instructors were instilling this in their new recruits, that the service academies-in particular, the Naval Academy-were not doing the same with their charges in preparation for their entry into the active forces as newly commissioned ensigns and second lieutenants. The idea that student development is not paramount must be a mistake-for surely courage, poise, self-confidence, self-reliance, and discipline are all factors in student development that are essential to the successful transition from civilian to military leader. Integrity-the set of moral values we carry-is one of the most noteworthy attributes that active-duty personnel possess. The building of integrity begins in recruit training and at the academies, as well as the other avenues into the active forces. Therefore, I disagree that this student development has been ignored.
Finally, while the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy had great success, there is a vast difference in what Kings Point graduates prepare for and what the graduates of the academies of the U.S. armed forces prepare for. That does not mean that things cannot be learned from the Kings Point experience, but it does mean that some things need to be different.
"Aegis Computing Enters the 21st Century"
(See D. Meyer and J. Geary, pp. 39-41, January 1998 Proceedings)
Chief Electronics Technician James H. Rutten, U.S. Naval Reserve (Retired)Having spent the past 15 years working on GPS-embedded computers for the military at a government contractor, I found this article interesting. I understand the need for upgrades and the extra computing power they provide to the mission commander. The system approach is the way to go. The combat capabilities of the Aegis platforms are worth the cost of producing the technology.
My concern with the Aegis upgrades planned for the DDG-91 and above is that commercial-off-the-shelf computers are susceptible to electromagnetic interference and very susceptible to electromagnetic pulses (EMP). Off-the-shelf modern computers are not designed to the EMP standards that the current Aegis computers can withstand. One EMP blast within 400 miles will make the DDG-91 with off-the-shelf computers less useful than my old DD-719 would be today.
I hope that with the push to modernize with off-the-shelf commercial equipment, this susceptibility is not lost in the desire to use the best and fastest computers, for the best and fastest may not be good enough.
"False Assumptions, Wistful Dreams"
(See N. T. Honaker, pp. 70-73, January 1998; C. Ratliff, p. 6, February 1998 Proceedings)
Rear Admiral J. P. Davis, U.S. Navy, Program Executive Officer for Submarines-Mr. Honaker's assessment of the Navy's submarine program is well intended and most welcome. However, I take exception to several of his assumptions and conclusions. The mission of our nuclear submarine force always is under review in an ever changing political climate, and major decisions concerning mission, force strength, and technology have been made over the past two years. Construction of the first New Attack Submarine (NSSN) will begin this year and will by no means be at the low end of the U.S. submarine force structure, as the article concluded. The NSSN is designed to be tactically superior to the Los Angeles (SSN-688)-class submarines.
Although stealth is paramount to the effectiveness and survivability of any submarine, it was by no means the only consideration in determining which Seawolf (SSN-21) characteristics would be retained in the more-affordable NSSN. Command-and-control, communications, and intelligence-collection systems will match or better the capability of the Seawolf s systems, with the planned ability to accommodate future advanced technologies at minimum cost. The signal processing capability alone will exceed that of three Seawolfs combined. Mission for mission, the NSSN is designed to perform as well or better than Los Angeles-class and Seawolf-class submarines. Mr. Honaker's statement that coproduction of the NSSN resulted from the congressional decision that the Seawolf program was a "mess" is unfounded. The original Navy plan for the NSSN was to award all submarine design and construction to one shipyard. Congress determined that the advantage of maintaining two fully capable submarine construction yards outweighed the additional cost incurred and mandated a shared construction program for the NSSN. The Navy fully supports the construction teaming concept. The construction program will proceed with both shipyards building from a single, industry-leading, digital-design three-dimensional product model database.
I am proud of the NSSN program and the results of the concerted efforts of Congress, the Navy, and the shipbuilders to bring this next-generation submarine to reality. The Navy needs a multirole submarine that is capable, versatile, and affordable. The NSSN is exactly that. More information is available on the Web at www.nssn.navy.mil .
"Obey the Iron Law"
(See T. Pierce, pp. 28-31, November 1997; T. X. Hammes, p. 16, January 1998 Proceedings)
Vice Admiral John B. LaPlante, U.S. Navy (Retired)-Commander Pierce makes a far better case for the importance of the "iron rule" during World War II than he does for its relevance to today's (and tomorrow's) operations.
During the "Big War," amphibious operations varied in size, opposition ashore, threat at sea, and many other areas. But they had factors in common: They were mounted with specific objectives and execution times-and there was a war on. In those cases, the applicability of the iron rule was unquestioned-a "no-brainer."
It is not so easy today. Long deployments with no planning objective at the outset, changing to multiple-planning objectives during. Multiple-tasking authorities. Planning directives without initiating directives. Joint. Coalition. No-threat situations (to the landing force or to the amphibious task force or both). Nongovernmental organizations. Humanitarian considerations. Impossible rules of engagement. Dominant battlespace awareness. Refugees. Dominant CaI. And the 5,OOO-mile screwdrivers-lots of them. Given this morass of an operating environment (not to say that it is bad-just that it is reality), no rule is made of iron.
Or to put it differently, the iron rule of the modern age is that there are no iron rules. The only truly indispensible skill is the ability to adapt.
But don't take my word for it-look at history. Starting with Desert Shield and continuing through every major operation in the post-Cold War era, the iron rule has been violated ceaselessly. Does this mean that we as an institution have taken leave of our senses? Or does it mean that rules that governed operations during World War II maybe are not the ones best suited to here and now? There is no reason-even doctrinal-that the officer in charge of an operation that employs amphibious assets must be a Navy officer. Unity of command? Sure. Nobody in his right mind would advocate anything else. But unity of command under a Navy officer in all cases, without exception, ever?
"Battle Space Control - Something Is Missing"
(See R. D. Mixson and J. A. Corder, pp. 84-85, January 1998 Proceedings)
Lieutenant R. M. Archibald, U.S. Navy (Retired)-Rear Admiral Mixson and Major General Corder addressed only the tactical part of the problem of future defensive electronic countermeasures. These problems are real and need to be resolved.
Infrared and laser countermeasures also are problems that need to be included in future countermeasure systems. Missing also were the problems of strategic electronic warfare (EW). Before countermeasure systems can be designed, the threat needs to be identified and essential parameters given to the system design engineers. This requires vehicles that are configured for strategic EW-a suite of equipment that is different from tactical EW equipment. In addition to collection, there must be provisions for analysis of the collected data. Whether this is part of the carrier battle force needs to be resolved. Updating the electronic order of battle is a necessary part of strike planning. Again, this requires a different suite of equipment for collecting and analyzing the electronic environment.
The mission of protecting the strike aircraft in the U.S. Air Force Expeditionary Wing is the same; therefore, I would assume the Air Force problems are similar. I think any progress in the development of joint tactical and strategic equipment will be slow and not entirely satisfactory to either the Navy or the Air Force.
My comments are derived from my experience, both as active-duty officer working in aviation electronics and as a logistics engineer working for Sanders, Lockheed, ATI, Northrop, and TRW primarily on EW systems.
"Just Cause for Intervention"
(See G. T. Ware, pp. 52-53, December 1997 Proceedings)
Commander J. Bruce Hamilton, U.S. Navy, Commanding Officer, USS John Paul Jones (DDG-53)-In national security debates, two views of the use of military force typically emerge. One holds that the government of the liberal democracy born with the American Revolution should appropriate the property and human capital of its citizens for fielding armed forces only to the minimum extent necessary for the survival and safety of the nation. This is the view articulated by the founding fathers and codified in the U.S. Constitution. It is the strict national interest view.
The second view is that "enlightened" politicians and bureaucrats are somehow justified to use armed forces for the conduct of moral crusades to solve the world's problems, even though those problems don't pose a threat to the nation. When Commander Ware states, "We no longer can rely on a strict national interest test for humanitarian engagement," he aligns himself with this second view.
Commander Ware builds his case for U.S. humanitarian intervention on the false premise, quoted from former National Security Advisor Tony Lake, that Americans want to "end every conflict" and "save every child" in the world, and that they are willing to cede to their federal government even more control over their lives and property in order to do so. But the U.S. military is, and always has been, provided in order to defend the people of the nation and the territory in which they live. It was never intended that U.S. armed forces should run around somehow making the world a better place for all mankind.
As Samuel P. Huntington stated in the September/October 1997 Foreign Affairs, "The fact that things are going wrong in many places in the world is unfortunate, but it does not mean that the United States has either an interest in or the responsibility for correcting them."
If Commander Ware were to rationalize humanitarian intervention on preventing the spread of problems that could affect U.S. security, he might be on more solid footing.
But he doesn't. His argument is based on his concern that a post-Cold War retreat from an expansive view of U.S. intervention will ". . . threaten to escalate . . . atrocities in those areas of the world where the United States does not have a classic national interest." His argument for humanitarian engagement is founded solely on his moral desire to help others. This is appropriate for private volunteer organizations such as the International Red Cross, but U.S. armed forces are neither funded by charity nor constitutionally tasked with making the world a nicer place to live.
Humanitarian operations, like many other "good deeds," have the sound and feel of high moral purpose. Too bad armed forces don't grow on trees-but they must be fielded and funded. Any military action conducted by the federal government, regardless of how much good it may accomplish, must be preceded by the forceful appropriation of U.S. citizens' property and/or lives.
Therefore, it is vitally important to the maintenance of individual liberty that the use of military forces be defined narrowly to defense of national interests and used reluctantly-only in the case of clear and present danger.
Even if the occasional moral crusade might make many Americans feel good, it runs counter to the reasons why the several states came together in the first place. The basis for the union-and by extension, its military-was collective defense. Hamilton's Federalist Paper Number Eight articulated reasons for some sacrifice of liberty being the necessary cost of safety from external danger. It is clear from reading the founding fathers' works that they never intended sacrifices of individual liberty beyond those essential for the union's safety.
In addition to further losses of our own liberty, humanitarian intervention without national interest involved could actually damage the nation's security. A 29 December 1997 op-ed piece in The Wall Street Journal sums it up:
There is a . . . fading perception among real or potential adversaries that we have clearly defined our vital interests, and that we are willing and able to defend them with military force. The corrosive effects [of foreign policy based on beneficence rather than national interest] could be substantial, especially if the U.S. military continues its transformation from an institution focused on killing people and destroying things toward an agency mainly for peacekeeping and policing. Over time, our friends and allies may become unsure whether our security umbrella is still reliable. In determining whether such efforts are worth the cost, one first must resolve how to place value on a human life. How do you stack up a U.S. soldier's life against the life of a Hutu or a Tutsi civilian? Is the ratio one-to-one? One-to-two? One-to-one thousand? Former U.S. Ambassador to Yugoslavia Warren Zimmerman once said he expected U.S. soldiers' lives would be lost in Bosnia, but that the price would be worth the Bosnians' lives saved. I wonder how many U.S. soldiers or their parents or spouses would agree with his enlightened perspective? Warren Zimmerman and Tony Lake may think that humanitarian intervention is "worth the cost," but they're not the only ones who have to pay the freight.
As military officers, our duty is to keep the sword of war sharp-to be ready to fight and win our nation's wars. Although his moral purpose may be lofty, Commander Ware would dull that swordusing it for humanitarian intervention where there is no clear national security threat. His proposal is not in the best interest of our nation's security.
"Professionalism vs. Sexuality"
(See P. Vincent, pp. 74-76, January 1998; A. R. Banks, p. 8, February 1998 Proceedings)
Master Chief Mark Butler, U.S. Navy - Although Lieutenant Commander Vincent raised an important issue, he spent more time condemning the senior leadership and the mixed-gender training issue than proposing a way to fix the problem. My impressions are based on my experience as command master chief of the USS Monongahela (AO-178), a mixed-gender ship.
I agree with Commander Vincent that we should have separate-gender basic training. Although this runs counter to current doctrine, the fleet expects Sailors from the training commands to have the required basic military information. To attain this, the first phase of training (boot camp) needs to be separate, with very controlled mixed-gender training sessions, if any. Following boot camp, mixed gender training should be the norm, because a mixed-gender environment is becoming the norm throughout the fleet.
For too long, the fleet has received Sailors who can tell us more about sexual harassment and fraternization than they can about being Sailors. The current leadership at Recruit Training Command is reversing this and the fleet is seeing better Sailors, but they have been slow in coming. The sexual harassment and fraternization training is needed-but so is the military training.
Commander Vincent trivializes this training, and yet my worst problems of sexual harassment and fraternization have occurred in people in his age group-not in our younger Sailors. His assertion that these problems are unavoidable is an insult to the many Sailors who go to sea in a mixed-gender environment.
Are there problems? Yes there are, and naval leaders have to set the example. When officers or chiefs are involved in fraternization cases (as violators) they set the example-as leadership failures. They can't blame the system, because they are adults. They must be held accountable, and if that means Captain's Mast-or worse-then so be it. A good wardroom and chief's mess can keep this from happening. I've seen more than a few potential problems headed off with a well placed word from the executive officer or the command master chief. I also refuse to trivialize responsibility and accountability. Many Sailors work in a mixed-gender environment and avoid fraternization and sexual harassment. Perhaps a study should be conducted on the successes instead of lamenting the failures.
That a warrior from the submarine force should raise such issues is interesting. Go talk to the command master chief or commanding officer of a mixed-gender-crewed ship. Listen to what they say, and learn from them the lessons they have to teach. We deal with sexual harassment and fraternization, but it doesn't consume every day. Some Sailors go wrong and the chain of command adjusts their rudder angles-just as surely as our Navy leadership can make its own course corrections.
Lieutenant Commander Michael J. O'Donnell, U.S. Coast Guard Reserve (Retired)Lieutenant Commander Vincent raises important concerns about the top ranks' refusal to acknowledge the powerful sexual forces among junior enlisted personnel in all services. From firsthand experience, I can tell you that even if the admirals don't think about sex among the junior enlisteds-the junior enlisteds do!
I was the recruit company sponsor for Coast Guard Recruit Company ECHO145 at Training Center Cape May, New Jersey, in 1994. This was my second "sponsorship"-a program where experienced officers and senior enlisted personnel provide a reality check for the boots.
Our job was twofold: to assure the recruits that boot camp really does end and that the vast majority of them will make it through; and to tell them that the "real" Coast Guard is not like boot camp. It is in this second mission-answering questions and sharing experiences-that participants like myself get to play "sea daddy," a function that has been trivialized in the past few decades.
My job was to humanize the Coast Guard, while upholding and supporting the tasks of the company commanders. This is not an easy task, but one worth doing. The Coast Guard is in good hands-the kids I met were intelligent, savvy, and realistic, perhaps more so than the senior officers who sweat real life. The recruits asked me thoughtful, probing, and respectful questions. Their inquiries reflected deckplate interests, which I thought deserved my honest answers.
"Mr. O'Donnell, what was your worst day in the Coast Guard?" That was a mature question, and one that made me think. "Mr. O'Donnell, how do I get a lot of ribbons?" A fair question, and one that let me explain the rank-order of personal, unit, service, and qualification awards.
But the most interesting question I got was at an evening meal I had with a group of recruits. One young recruit, obviously a spokesman, nervous at posing a facts-of-life question to an officer old enough to be his father, asked point blank: "Sir, when we go to sea for weeks at a time, what does the Coast Guard do about my sex life?" Well, hold on a minute! I cannot imagine admirals answering such a question any more effectively than clergy would-that, of course, being the point of Commander Vincent's essay.
Commander Vincent hits the nail on the head in pointing out the need for officers acting in loco parentis to grapple with the sexual feelings of those in their late teens and early twenties. Denying the existence of such desires and attractions doesn't make them go away. Far better to acknowledge the situation and deal with it than to pretend it doesn't exist, blaming failure of leadership, inadequate training, or some other pass-the-blame bromide.
I am far more impressed with the honesty and trust of our most junior enlisteds than I am with the "artful dodger" mentality of the leadership. I just hope the youngsters of Coast Guard Recruit Company ECHO-145 never lose their sense of wonder and willingness to ask questions as they grow and develop throughout their service.
And by the way, my answer also was point blank: "The Coast Guard pretends you don't have one."
"A Tangled Webb"
(See P. E. Roush, pp. 4245, August 1997; R. Hegemann, C. van Someren, R. Kuntz, V. M. Hudson, L. Marano, L. Stovall, pp. 12-22, September 1997; J. D. Lynch, D. E. Phillips, P. S. Edwards, T. M. Kastner, G. W. Anderson, pp. 10-15, October 1997; D. C. Fuquea, K. H. Moeller, M. T. Owens, pp. 21-24, November 1997; T. C. Greenwood, J. M. van Tol, pp. 2425, December 1997; E. Donnelly, J. A. Pidgeon, pp. 25-26, January 1998; T. M. Murray, p. 13, February 1998 Proceedings)
Colonel Paul A. Roush, U.S. Marine Corps (Retired), Associate Chairman, Department of Leadership, Ethics, and Law, U.S. Naval Academy-There have been many responses to my article, most of which have been useful rejoinders, reflecting responsible differences of opinion. They have provided the grist for debate and discussion.
But the letter by Elaine Donnelly is different. There is almost nothing in the letter that is true. Ms. Donnelly alleges that she met with me in my office when she was a member of the Presidential Commission on the Assignment of Women in the Armed Forces. She has never been in my office. I was one of a number of persons who met with her and one of her fellow ideologues on the commission in the Law Library of the then Department of Leadership and Law. During that meeting a woman officer who was an instructor in a leadership course (NL202: Developing Subordinates) remarked that one of her students had expressed the view that Mr. James Webb was as bigoted with respect to gender as was Mr. David Duke with respect to race. The woman officer said she was sympathetic to the characterization. Ms. Donnelly attributes the student's reported comment to me. That is patently false.
Ms. Donnelly alleges that I confirmed at hearings before the commission that I had made the comment about Mr. Webb. That allegation is also false. At the hearing Ms. Donnelly referred to, I read a paper in which I presented my views on the effect of military women on unit cohesion. Among the major points I made was that cohesion if attained primarily as a consequence of invidious discrimination (for example, on the basis of race or gender) was unacceptable.
Ms. Donnelly chose not to respond to the topic under discussion, but instead began probing about a discussion at the Naval Academy in which unfavorable comments were made about a well-known individual. I responded to the effect that she must be talking about Mr. Webb, because it was clear to me that was her point of reference. She immediately petitioned the committee to call Mr. Webb as a witness because his name had been mentioned. It was such an absurdly obvious and contrived ploy on her part that even the highly partisan committee was not responsive to her request My comment was certainly not a confirmation that I had made any remark about Mr. Webb, but merely an affirmation that a student's comment had been reported by the student's instructor.
Ms. Donnelly also describes several other events related to my appearance before the commission. She relates an exchange in which I allegedly was unable to answer a question she posed. That allegation is actually closer to the truth than anything else concocted by Ms. Donnelly. She responded to my paper on unit cohesion by ignoring its content, choosing instead to read a lengthy excerpt from a complex court case with which I was unfamiliar. Because she did not see fit to furnish me with a copy of the excerpt, I simply replied that there was no way I could answer her question, given the context in which it was framed.
Another issue involved the determination of the service chiefs to continue in 1991 to support the combat-exclusion laws that prohibited women from serving on combatant ships or flying combatant aircraft. I had stated in my paper that such support was a clear signal that it was open season on military women. I stand by that statement. Ms. Donnelly attempts to refute it by asserting that she had been able to find several military women who agreed with the service chiefs. Even if true, her point is utterly irrelevant.
Ms. Donnelly also agreed with the position then taken by the service chiefs, which constitutes the best evidence I know that they were in error. She fails to point out that Admiral Frank Kelso, then Chief of Naval Operations, revised his view in light of the preexisting, pervasive bigotry brought to light by the criminal activity at the Tailhook debacle later in 1991.
Ms. Donnelly also expresses her preference for allowing midshipmen to be able publicly and outside official channels to oppose the law of the land, which now permits what formerly was proscribed by the then-existing combat exclusion laws. Logically, she should also not object if the majority of service persons were to lobby publicly and outside official channels to preclude service by minorities in the military despite laws prohibiting such behavior. The total breakdown of military discipline is the foreseeable consequence of the action she favors.
Finally, Ms. Donnelly describes an incident in which she asked a midshipman for his opinion on women in combat. She reports that the midshipman turned away with a pained look on his face. She claims to know that he did this as a result of my teachings. Being familiar with her approach to argumentation, I would not expect her to differentiate between concomitant variation and causality. Even so, the level of ignorance involved in such an attribution is truly appalling. An alternative explanation for the behavior of the midshipman might be that he was disgusted with the question and the questioner. That would have been a commendable response.
R. C. Bowdoin-As strongly as I support Mr. Webb's views, I believe the "evidentiary process" will be the ultimate determinate as to who is right and wrong. Sadly, I also believe the process can and will be played out on the battlefield-not in the halls of academe. Mr. Webb, one of few players with actual combat experience, speaks to deaf ears.
As this issue continues to elicit response from both sides, I am reminded of distinguished British military historian John Keegan's book The Face of Battle. He writes, "I have seen a good deal of other, earlier battles of this century on newsreel, some of them convincingly authentic, as well as much-dramatized feature films and countless static images of battle; photographs and paintings and sculptors of a varying degree of realism. But I have never been in a battle. And I grow increasingly convinced that I have very little idea of what a battle can be like."
Written in 1974, Mr. Keegan's words seem every bit as perceptive today-especially in the context of "A Tangled Webb."
"Taking Care of Our People: At Any Price?"
(See J. Burns, pp. 56-59, January 1998 Proceedings)
Ralph B. Latchaw, Jr.-Even if the military had all the money it wants for all the new weapons it needs, it still would need to change its approach to dependent care. Evidence shows that the current policy often breeds dysfunctional families and creates on-the-job stress for active-duty service members, thus undermining our national security.
It is not antifamily to adopt policies that promote family stability. For this reason, all states regulate marriage through licensing requirements. The service academies do not allow cadets or midshipmen to marry. Why can't the military regulate marriage by either requiring its junior members to be single or forbidding any dependency allowances until the service member reaches the grade of E-4?
Who has the political courage and the political clout to correct the dependent care problem?
The Seventh Annapolis Seminar
(See R. Seamon, p. 14, June 1997; N. Hogan, pp. 20-21, July 1997; E. B. Hontz, p. 22, September 1997; J. M. Keshishian, p. 29, November 1997; G. R. Worthington, pp. 19-20, January 1998 Proceedings)
Colonel William V. Kennedy, U.S. Army (Retired)-Admiral Worthington has brought us to the crux of the gender debate. In claiming that "five men would covet the woman; one would win," he reframes one of the most elemental and ultimately disastrous errors of the Protestant Reformation. In rejecting the concept of clerical celibacy, the leaders of the Reformation were affirming that human beings cannot control their sexuality.
Are you saying, Admiral Worthington, that every female nurse who has worked in close association with male doctors must have succumbed to an illicit proposal at some point? If so, why has the medical profession not disintegrated into a collection of "disgruntled operators" as you assure us is the certain future of the U.S. armed forces, if women are not driven back into the kitchen?
In holding to a celibate clergy and celibate male and female religious orders, the Catholic Church has affirmed that human beings can subordinate sexuality to a higher ideal. Yes, there are failures, but the vast majority remains faithful to their vow of celibacy.
Fulminate all you want, Admiral Worthington, but you cannot change the fact that an American is an American, male or female, with the same claim to serve to the limit of his or her capacity. The services can establish reasonable standards for any given assignment, but those standards must not be tainted by discrimination based on race, gender, religion, or ethnic background. Performance and behavior must be the bedrock.
I went through all of this as a reserve officer in the West Point admissions program during the debate leading up to the admission of women to the service academies. I helped to recruit some of the first women who went to West Point. I saw them achieve spectacular success there and in their military careers since. You are wrong, Admiral Worthington, on all counts.