Summery: Three dozen posts on the FM website have described different aspects of America’s broken OODA loop. An op-ed by Frederick and Kimberly Kagan in today’s Washington Posts points to a different and darker diagnosis. It’s presented here so that we see all alternative explanations, however bleak.
The diagnosis of America as having a broken OODA Loop (our ability to observer, orient, decide, act) has several operational advantages. It’s emotionally neutral, reassuringly technical in nature. It points at no specific individual, assigns no blame. Best of all, this leads to a clear solution. We need only act differently: see more clearly, learn from our mistakes, plan and act better.
Today’s Washington Post has an op-ed that disproves this analysis, and suggests a darker answer. A simpler explanation of why we cannot accurately see our world and learn from our mistakes. Perhaps we’re stupid.
“Why U.S. troops must stay in Afghanistan”
Kimberly Kagan (president of the Institute for the Study of War) and
Frederick Kagan (American Enterprise Institute)
Since appearing on the national stage in 2007, this pair have a near-perfect record of producing fallacious analysis and bad advice. Cheerleaders for our mad vain wars, advocates for the two costly but unsuccessful “surges” (Iraq, Afghanistan), they are war mongers in the most literal sense (see What is a warmonger? Who are the warmongers?). (For a brief analysis of their current bad advice see this post)
Despite this record they remain geopolitical gurus in good standing, their advice prominently displayed by the news media and eagerly read by both decision-makers and the public. They are our failure to learn in tangible form.