The Long War: The United States as a Self-Inflicted Wound
March 13, 2007
Key Self-Inflicted Wounds
- Fight long wars with short term, partial and inadequate solutions.
- Underestimate risks, benefits, options like diplomacy, containment, deterrence.
- Fight the war we want, rather than the war we face: No real strategy for conflict termination and grand strategy.
- Deny the scale and nature of civil tensions and conflict: Sectarian, ethnic, tribal, economic, and governance.
- Confuse counterinsurgency with stability operations and nation building.
- Ethnocentricity: “Democracy” versus governance and local culture, and values.
- Underestimate the resources required and under-react as crisis or conflict develops.
- Deny the seriousness of the situation as it develops to Congress, American people, and ourselves.