31 October 2015

Vietnamization 2.0

Andrew Bacevich has an important article now up on TomDispatch.com, On Building Armies (and Watching Them Fail): Why Washington Can’t 'Stand Up' Foreign Militaries, which is highly recommended reading.

Likening present U.S. efforts to build national military forces in Afghanistan and Iraq --- that are capable of protecting present governments --- to the five-year "Vietnamization" wind-down period of the U.S. war in Viet Nam, Bacevich makes a very strong case for his central fact:
Indeed, the United States would be better served if policymakers abandoned the pretense that the Pentagon possesses any gift whatsoever for “standing up” foreign military forces. Prudence might actually counsel that Washington assume instead, when it comes to organizing, training, equipping, and motivating foreign armies, that the United States is essentially clueless.