TOC Ready Room 28 April 2022: How do you solve a problem like the Navy? (and other naval musings)

What’s wrong and right, afloat.

Modern naval problems, it turns out, look pretty much like naval problems from any time.  The parameters are resources, logistics, geography, and technology.

This will be a tweet-enriched lightning round.  The big punch comes at the end.  It’s a doozy (and yes, I know:  if I were tediously pedantic I’d spell it Duesy.  Life is short).

A number of negative things are happening in a concentrated burst.  One is that the Navy brass – “Big Navy” – has just proposed to whack out a big chunk of the fleet for the foreseeable future.  With a target over the last half-decade of 355 ships, the Navy would decline from its current 296 ships to 280 in Fiscal Year 2027 (FY27).  In the best case among three options proposed by the Navy, the fleet would recover to 299 by FY32, 10 years from now. Continue reading “TOC Ready Room 28 April 2022: How do you solve a problem like the Navy? (and other naval musings)”

U.S. in Afghanistan: Of course we negotiate with terrorists

Be afraid.

In a sign of the surreality into which we have descended under the Obama administration, the media have been reporting with a straight face that the U.S. will shortly begin talks with the Taliban in Doha, Qatar, and that President Obama calls the agreement for the talks an “important first step toward reconciliation.”

To recap: in October 2001, U.S. forces entered Afghanistan to depose the terrorist Taliban regime, which had given the 9/11 attackers some of their most important support.  From that day to this, the Taliban have not changed their stripes.  They are still terrorists.  They intimidate and murder Afghan and Pakistani civilians, in their quest to retain a brutal control over territory in both nations.  They regularly attack U.S. and NATO troops in Afghanistan.  Their interest in “reconciliation” is exactly what it has been since 2001: an interest in regaining control of Afghanistan, ideally without having to meet NATO forces in battle.

The announcement of talks with the Taliban coincided with a rocket attack by the Taliban on the U.S. air base at Bagram, in which four of our servicemen were killed.  The Taliban promptly Continue reading “U.S. in Afghanistan: Of course we negotiate with terrorists”