HOW WELL DID THE US BALANCE MILITARY AND POLITICAL FACTORS DURING THE GULF WAR??
The framers of the US Constitution had the forethought to create balance and ensure that the Military is subordinate to its Civilian leadership. Forethought balanced with experience, the former colonists sought to avoid the European model where the King controlled the Military. The relationship between Civilian leaders and the Military is critical, this case study takes a look at how harmonious the relationship was during the Gulf War of 1991. Taking into account the timing of the war and the personalities involved is important.
Balance was lopsided but did not become an issue until the final days of the war.
National politics were overridden by World politics. President Bush and his advisors concentrated heavily on achieving buy in by UN partners. President did not seem to place as much emphasis…did this lead to the difficulties seen today?
Building the Coalition was named the center of gravity by ..end note. Proven by the effort put in by President Bush and his administration in securing buy in and ensuring votes to use all means as outlined in .# The Secretary of State, ?? Baker – was relentless in his pursuit of building the coalition with the top five and other members. He used diplomacy exceptionally as an instrument of power to ensure that the Arab nations were on board and willing to play a huge role
Buying consensus from Congress p229 How Wars end Domestic values. Another element of the civilian
Building the plan with the Military was not quite as critical. The two personalities, both former Vietnam veterans, understood the role of the Military in US.
Where the harmoniuos relationship between Civilians and the Military fell apart was following completion of what GENs Powell and Schwartzkopf understood to be the end state. Both sides failed to plan through the end, to plan through the final phase. The end of the war saw finger pointing and blame. Assumptions were made .
During and after the war – finger pointing? Civilian masters or not? End of the war.what then? Failure The Gulf War extract DoS demands of the military..any follow through? What is their charter .ill defined ending. How wars end abstract assumptions made.ball dropped. p 231 Another missed opportunity p228 How Wars end failed to topple Saddam .putting our lens of seeing the world on how the Iraqi population would react .fulfilled promises on the surface.met the intent of the UN. tricked the Kurds and Shia into believing that they would get support in an overthrow but then allowed Iraqis to use gunships to quell. Buyers remorse? Now what? How Wars End Hurry the unpleasantness.
Was the building and maintenance of the coalition, buy in by congress and the US populace and shaping of the new world order following the cold war effective in shaking loose the memories of Vietnam.
Personalities and timing played a huge role in the positive relationship between the Civilian leadership and the Military. President Bush, as a veteran of World War two, had a lot of empathy for what the troops in the field would be facing. General’s Powell and Schwartzkopf, as veterans of the Vietnam War had something to prove/overcome. Both of these perspectives played a part in the decision to end the war at 100 days. Pres Bush lamented in memories that there was no true end.did this play a factor in his son’s decision? Some have critiqued that he was aiming to finish his father’s war.
Complicating matters further was a general failure to recognize and address the challenge of making force serve policy. lip service ..tunnel vision? Coordination fell apart
Were the ghosts of Vietnam truly exorcised following the Gulf war of 1991? Did they play a factor in decision making from the Civilian and Military minds.both mindfully and perhaps subliminally.
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