14 Aug 2009 @ 2:57 PM 
 

Ignorance and Arrogance; North American “Academic” Style

 

I’ve got a number of things I’d like to write about, and I would ignore this tripe as being inane; but it is filled with the type of self-righteous drivel that is heard in America from time to time. It passes for “academic” thought, I suppose, but it shouldn’t. It is at least presented as if it were academic thought, because the author couches his blog with a term that refers to a social science, anthropology. The author claims academic credit. He teaches at a university, although that doesn’t speak well for the school. In fact, it speaks rather poorly for it. I’ve come to view the author with a very jaded eye. I lump him in with such charlatans as Robert Young Pelton. It’s amazing how charlatans tend to clump together into clots. Pelton is quoted in the posting to which I am referring today.

Maximillian Forte, the author of “Open Anthropology,” and an outspoken critic of the Human Terrain System, posted began his post today by framing further discussion on terms of rape, shoplifting and gangsterism. Having thus childishly explained his reasoning process he examines the Marine efforts in Helmand Province in the same light. While it is a bumbling literary trick, it does cast illumination on the thinking of the “anti-war” crowd. While Mr. Forte is a Canadian and teaches in Canada, a fact for which I do not blame the Canadians as a whole, he has managed to congeal in one gelatinous clot the arguments of many of the “anti-war” crowd. He has also captured the essence of a festering affinity for extremist propaganda that exists in North America, notably in some small but significant numbers in the United States. That is the only reason that I’m even giving his self-righteous polemic the dignity of a response; because it gives me the opportunity to address some truly egregious lies that exist in the open in America. Those who read this blog regularly don’t buy into such lies. This is for those who may stray across these words, that they may be offered a the choice to listen to one who has been on the ground over one who hasn’t.

Yes, it means that much to have walked the actual dust and stones of Afghanistan rather than sitting in an office at Concordia University in Montreal, Canada.

Forte asks a question that begs an answer about the Marines in Helmand.

It begins with this article posted prominently on Yahoo! by the Associated Press for this date, titled “Marine mission to protect Afghans slows progress.” It was to me, and hopefully to anyone with a memory capacity larger than a gnat’s, possibly the most outlandish headline to be seen in a long time. The Marines are protecting Afghans? The Marines? Protecting?

Yes, protecting. The Marines are there to clear the Taliban from the area, a group that is supported the a greater proportion of the population of Helmand than in most areas of the country, but still much less than the 51% that would be required in a developed, well-governed country like Canada, or the United States for that matter, for a particular group to hold sway. They hold sway there because they have weapons and they are not afraid to use them. They hold sway in part because they have, during their bloody reign, mostly destroyed the beneficial tribal and village leadership structures which used to provide a social framework that held together communities, filling the void with their own twisted brand of political leadership. As an anthropologist, Mr. Forte would do well to actually do some research on the destruction of these traditional structures, structures which the Taliban have found to be obstacles in the path of their dominance.

Mr. Forte then goes on to paint the Marines as bloodthirsty and wanton destroyers of villages.

The Marines, in not being allowed to raze a village and mow everyone in their path, are “protecting” civilians, clearly from the Marines themselves:

The British jet called in by the U.S. Marines had the Taliban position in sight, but the pilot refused to fire, a decision that frustrated Marines on the ground….

Forte clearly has no grip on the reality of Afghanistan. Marines don’t, nor have they ever, razed any villages in Afghanistan. They suffer from no compunction to “mow everything in their path.” The Marines are actually much better versed in counterinsurgency warfare than the Army is, on the whole. My Army cohorts may not like to hear that, but the ones in the know realize this and say it readily themselves. The Marines tend to “get it” more than the Army does. They are not there to “raze a village.”

No matter how much you “get it,” it is frustrating to get shot at and not be able to shoot back, or to have decisive firepower refused when you know where the enemy hides is frustrating. That frustration does not equate to a desire to raze a village. Now Forte becomes a Hague lawyer:

Since the Marines are frustrated that they cannot fire, they are “protecting” civilians, as if they should be praised for doing what is legally required of US/NATO occupation forces under the international legal conventions that they signed on to, and that acquired force as part of their domestic laws. Not being excessively aggressive, and committing war crimes, is reconstructed as benevolence, rather than a basic minimum. Not being an outright brute, is represented as moderation. It’s a very short and smooth road to sainthood for warriors forced to respect the mandates of the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War (1949) (see also here). This is humanitarianism, as a default starting point.

Forte shows an amazing lack of knowledge of the laws of war to which he presumes to lecture. Belligerents are not required to refrain from applying firepower to their enemy. Not at all. They are merely required to avoid collateral (meaning unintended) damage to the greatest extent possible while in the course of defending themselves. They are also permitted to continue offensive operations, and any dwelling, church, mosque, hospital or other structure which the enemy is using as a firing or observation position is not afforded any special protection under the laws of war, having forfeited any such protection upon being used as a fighting position. No, Forte has no concept. I’ve got news for him; thousands of civilians have been killed since the overthrow of the Taliban regime in late 2001 and early 2002. Most of them have been killed by those selfsame Taliban that Mr. Forte so fawningly worships as “freedom fighters” and “Mujaheddin.”

While the casualties that have been caused by the coalition have been unintentional, those of the Taliban have not been. The deaths of innocents, and particularly of government supporters, are carefully orchestrated for effect. We have not left bombs in crowded civilian areas. We have not hung men for having currency in their pockets that we found disagreeable. We have not shot women in the head after dragging them from a car for working on a Taliban installation. We have at times been gullible. Each of those bombed wedding parties was bombed due to poor intelligence, usually provided by a person who had a grudge against the family, and sometimes because the Taliban wanted a family harmed and planted “intelligence” which gave them the double whammy of harming their opponent while giving them a visible sign of American or Coalition “disregard” for Afghan lives.

Forte also quotes a section of the Geneva Conventions that applies to occupying powers, which the United States and its NATO partners are not. Regardless of the rantings of Forte, the coalition members are here to assist the Government of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. That is not an occupation. The United Nations passed a resolution and is here in force. The NATO forces in Afghanistan are engaged in assisting a lawfully elected and constituted government in establishing control over its territory and in the construction/reconstruction of a war-torn country besieged from within and without by an extremist insurgency which the people of Afghanistan overwhelmingly do not support.

Now, there are various and sundry other dynamics at work, the complexities of which Forte shows no grasp of whatsoever, which is interesting for an anthropologist. This demonstrates why, after many years in the field, he is an Associate professor of Anthropology, instead of a full professor. It be can surmised from his unwillingness and inability to plumb the depths of the troubles and challenges of Afghan society as being due to his propensity for grasping at low-hanging fruit and his propensity for emotional outbursts such as the one we are delving into now. This, tainted with the brush of his political ineptitude, demonstrated by his insistence on attempting to portray a band of criminals as being on the same par as the Mujaheddin who were part of a very popular resistance to the Soviet Union’s expedition into Afghanistan in the 1980′s. Afghans themselves would tell Forte that he’s way off base on that point. I’ve had countless Afghans explain to me precisely why the Taliban don’t rate the name, “Mujaheddin.” Their logic is impeccable. It is Muslim, and it is local. Forte wouldn’t have any idea what to do with indigenous opinions, being that he is the caliber of anthropologist that he is.

Just today in Twitter, I spotted this statement: “Rough time 4 soldiers fighting terrorists and building communities in Afghanistan.” Building communities — after massive aerial bombings over a period of eight years. Building communities — as if Afghanistan had no communities before Americans slammed into the country. “Fighting terrorists” as if those who fight soldiers, foreign invaders, can now be re-branded as “terrorists” in spite of common definitions premised on the idea that terrorism involves the deliberate, indiscriminate killing of non-combatants, a category that automatically excludes soldiers.

Mass bombings is a powerful term. It brings visions of Arclight B-52 bombings to mind. Now, granted there were B-52 sorties against entrenched Taliban positions in the early days of the rout of the Taliban from power by the US-assisted Northern Alliance, but ladies gents, I’m here to tell you that the bombings in Afghanistan that I have had personal knowledge of involved one or two weapons per event and they were precision weapons. Precision weapons don’t mean “no mistakes.” They mean that nobody was dropping ordnance willy-nilly with absolutely no regard for civilian deaths. So, Forte waxes theatrical again. So do any who parrot his dissemblings.

It does bring one to wonder what Forte and his ilk think of the always deliberate, sometimes indiscriminate and sometimes targeted killing of non-combatants by the Taliban, HiG and other anti-government elements in Afghanistan. It makes one wonder what Forte thinks of hanging a man and leaving his body in public for days under threat of death to anyone who would give the corpse the decency of a burial in accordance with Islamic rules. It also demonstrates the absolute ignorance of the fact that the Taliban have killed more Afghan civilians, by far, than they have NATO Soldiers. Yet Forte lauds these types of mean as “freedom fighters.” What a strange, sad little man to be so led by his hatred of Soldiers and Marines into praising men who would perform such acts; acts of barbarism which are not performed by NATO forces or the Afghan National Security Forces. Forte misguidedly quotes Reagan, a man whom he despises and attempts to use as some sort of boomerang against his foes, as being somehow supportive, in death, of the Taliban.

Let us not forget that many of these gallant, freedom loving, heroic mujahideen became what we know today as the Taliban.

While it is true that some Taliban fought as part of a couple of factions as Mujaheddin, the great majority of Mujaheddin are not Taliban. I’ve met many Mujaheddin who are now members of the Afghan National Army and Afghan National Police. One day in early August, 2007, I sat in the home of one of the key Mujaheddin leaders in Kapisa Province, who explained to me why he saw no reason to take up arms against the United States. He did not see the US as an occupation force. He saw that our intentions were good. He also reserved the right to decide at any point that his opinion had changed and that he would again pick up arms. He supported the Afghan Government, and while he saw huge challenges and was dismayed with the ineptitude and corruption, he preferred an elected government to a dictatorial theocracy.

Had Forte, or any who share his twisted concepts, ever bothered to get the dust of Afghanistan upon their loafers, they would know such things as naturally as they draw breath. Forte would be deeply disillusioned by what he would find in Afghanistan. He would find that he was totally, completely and irretrievably clueless. If he were half the scientist he claims to be on his CV, he would realize that speaking so with absolutely no real knowledge of his subject is, well, unscientific.

He would also know better than to quote Robert Young Pelton about Afghanistan. A scientist should have the knowledge to recognize a lying charlatan when he meets one. Instead this “scientist” quotes him, as if lies would carry buffoonery forward into becoming fact.

Finally, Forte reflexively cannot resist another reference to the Human Terrain System; the perpetual bug up his bum. He retells the tragic story of a female researcher, Paula Loyd, who was murdered by an angry Afghan man. No one knows for sure why Abdul Salam set her on fire. Don Ayala, a colleague, fatally shot Salam immediately after the murderous attack. Now Forte paints Ayala as a mercenary and Loyd as very much deserving of her fate. Forte displays a picture of Ayala and Loyd, claiming that, “few would be willing to bet their wages that there is a woman in that photo.” Why? Because she is wearing a helmet? She is very obviously a woman. This criticism is very strange coming from a man who apparently purposely created an avatar of himself on his website bearing a remarkable resemblance to Vladimir Lenin. Forte muses that because she didn’t look like a woman, and did resemble a soldier, she was a legitimate target of an Afghan civilian. He leaves us with this bizarre bit of nonsense:

Salam was a liberator. He liberated Loyd from a prolonged career of selling her services to militarism, and thus to terrorism. Never again would she be used as a human shield by the American terrorists. However, Salam did not kill everyone on her patrol: that’s because he was protecting them.

That is some of the most heinous and hateful speech I’ve ever seen directed against what should have been a colleague in Forte’s mind. His malevolent misogyny belies his portrayal of himself as the fair-minded arbiter of Taliban legitmacy as “freedom fighters” or Mujaheddin.

Some day, I would like to have a chat with the board of regents of Concordia University and ask them what in the bloody hell they were thinking about when they hired this so-called “scientist.” I’m even more amazed that they have tolerated his bizarre ramblings over the course of the time that I have been aware of Forte’s gymnastic buffoonery.

As I said when I started this deconstruction of the self-proclaimed “scientist,” it should have been left in the dustbin of obscurity; but there are others who mimic his line of dislogic. This is more to demonstrate the absolute buffoonery of those who even raise the term, “occupation,” those who would deign to call Taliban and HiG insurgents “freedom fighters” or “Mujaheddin.” They have no idea what they are talking about.

Afghanistan has deep challenges on many levels. Many are self-inflicted, and many are the result of a society literally eviscerated by 30 years of conflict, both externally and internally motivated. These problems will not be solved overnight. Forte and his ilk are politically motivated, but thank God that they are not as motivated as the men and women that I work with, who are willing to risk their lives in order to make our nations safer by securing this society, one of the poorest nations in the world. Afghans are a mix of many ethnic groups, and they struggle to find an “Afghan” identity, even in the middle of a siege brought upon them by those who would seize power and again govern by fear of physical abuse, torture, deprivation and death. An officer recently stood and spoke about how we should all be here just for Afghanistan. I told him, “No, I’m here to protect my children. It just so happens that in order for my children to be secure, the children of Afghanistan must be secure. That’s why I am willing to do this.”

The great thing is that Max Forte and his ilk are only willing to run their mouths. Words have great power, but words have considerably less power when there is no willingness to put one’s life on the line for them. Forte will not risk his life for his words.

I am for mine.

It is up to the reader to decide who to believe; the “scientist,” or the Soldier.

Tags Tags: , , , ,
Categories: Afghanistan, analysis, COIN, COINiots
Posted By: Old Blue
Last Edit: 14 Aug 2009 @ 02 57 PM

EmailPermalink
 

Responses to this post » (17 Total)

 
  1. While I will listen to both the academic and the soldier, I will quickly grow tired of the academic’s diatribe which is often based on theory, rhetoric and a not so well hidden agenda.

    For facual insight, especially for the day to day events occurring in Afghanistan, I rely on several BLOGs such as yours. Oddly enough, each of the BLOGs I read present a different perspective, from which I reach some conclusions.

    I’ll take boots on the ground over academia any day.

    Thanks for the posts.

  2. Ky Woman says:

    Bravo!!

    The ‘wordsmith’ has struck at the heart of the matter.

    I’ll give you one guess as to whom I believe. ;-)
    Sorry, Mad Max (Not) but it’s not you…

    Blue, stay safe out there, ya hear?

    LFS~

  3. RYP says:

    “a lying charlatan”

    Talking tough from while hiding behind an alias “Old Blue”? :) )

    Please remember that you are responsible for your actions and statements. You were proven wrong once when you tried this cowardly tack before and you made the appropriate retraction. Lets not go down that path again.

    Why not stick to documenting what you actually do instead of filling your site with angry sad attacks on others?

    best

    Robert Young Pelton

  4. Old Blue says:

    Ahhh, RYP. So you found your way to Afghan Quest! So nice to see you, like a camel spider in the sock drawer. I ran into someone who met you recently in a hotel in Kabul. Unbidden, he expressed that you were a self-important, arrogant windbag. Not unlike what I expected.

    RYP, old toad, I don’t work with a pseudonym to hide from you. You’re simply not that important. I do find it convenient that it irritates you, but there are so many people who know exactly who I am, including my current employer, that it would be all too simple to find me. Perhaps it would lead to a face to face conversation one day, although I would find that inadvisable currently. You see, I don’t like you. I don’t like people who lie, especially those who lie about others in order to improve their own prospects. I don’t like snakes, but I am by no means phobic. Snakes are usually pretty easy to deal with, especially when you remember they are snakes, like in the old fable, and don’t listen to their line of shit. There are several ways to deal with snakes, and none of them involve cuddling. I view you pretty much in the role of the snake in the old fable. Nearly every interaction I have had with you has followed that type of pattern.

    No, RYP, I’m not going to be cowed by your threats. I backed off one thing and one one thing only; that there was, in fact, a tiny skeletal face on that “skull-adorned” helicopter. The only other wording that I changed was to clearly state that it was my opinion that you were telling falsehoods… lies. I did state clearly then, and still maintain, that you are a liar. I always found it amusing that you seemed too dim to read that to mean exactly what it means in English. I can’t believe that you are so self-important that you could not read the insult in my obsequious “apology.” I did, however, live up to my word. You never did. You said you would print those photos on your site, and you never did, not that I have seen. Another lie, RYP old bitch? If you did and I just failed to see them, then point us all to the link. (Get the challenge in that, old man?) You’ll find a way to dismiss it and wriggle away… you always do. Like a snake. Probably with something very self-important and big-sounding. Your own pictures do not support your story… all except the tiny skull face on the rear of an engine nacelle, so unclear it took a close-up to show what it really was.

    Note, you ridiculous bastard, that I still kept my word, even to a liar, and did not print those photos even to demonstrate your ridiculous fabrications.

    So, if you can prove that you’re not a liar, and that I know that you aren’t and am just trying to harm you in some way, then you may sue me.

    You can’t. I can, however, prove that by all evidence available to me, you are a liar. Actually, I believe that I have, in writing and on this blog. And I have every reason to believe in my soul that you are a liar. So the ball’s in your court. I find you, Sir, to be a charlatan and a profiteer. You do nothing good that I can see for anyone but yourself. From what I can tell, you run around trying to sell “intelligence” to anyone who will pay you, and based upon what I have seen of your ethics, I would not trust you not to deal with whomever would pay you a decent sum for any information you may find that is valuable to them. Anyone. You slandered an Army officer who interfered with your glory seeking, you lied about the team (I believe to strengthen your own business position,) events and the environment, and you painted a grotesque picture of the situation on the ground in an area where I have spent time, even recently. Sure enough, it had not turned into the nightmarish “Apocolypse Now” scene that you had painted. You are a sensationalist, and never to be believed. You may occasionally tell the truth, but who can really tell? You are a self-created character. A work of fiction in your own right. You’re a cartoon.

    I have spoken to nearly everyone who played a primary and some who were in secondary roles during your trip. All refute you, all others are consistent. You are the only liar, and that’s why your stories don’t match up with anyone else’s. Again, RYP, it boils down to this; you are a liar.

    No one in their right mind should ever trust you. Have I stated myself clearly enough?

    Now; sue me. Sue me or shut the hell up. You won’t, because you are a blowhard, and even a stupid lawyer would tell you that you don’t have a case. You are a reprehensible bottom feeder, and I am not in the least bit concerned with your pathetic threats. Nor am I concerned with what happens to you. I hope that you become the richest man in the world and live forever.

    That being said, bugger off, punk. Go cry on Maximillian’s shoulder. You two were made for each other. Real people have real jobs to do, trying to do what they can to change the situation in Afghanistan for the better instead of squeezing it for every buck they can get from whoever pays the most. We don’t have time for self-important blowhards and their petty hurt feelings. You cartoon characters need to just stay the hell out of the way and plan their next cartoon book for teenage boys dreaming of adventure.

  5. Hope says:

    Coward, Mr. Pelton?
    You claim to be a journalist.

    Check your facts, sir.

    I won’t ask you to check your ego.
    Everyone has their limitations.

  6. RYP says:

    That sure is a lot of invective, invention and gas for someone that doesn’t care and can’t seem to work up the courage to grow a real identity. We are all good looking and always correct on the internet aren’t we “old blue” :) ))

    I won’t out you…but you do need to focus on more important things (like your taxpayer-funded job) rather railing on folks like me.

    Keep the love coming… but you still ain’t getting a reach around.

    RYP

  7. Old Blue says:

    RYP brings a little crass to everything he does.

    It’s amazing how all the threats cease when the bluster doesn’t have an effect.

    I don’t care about good-looking, I’m beyond that and comfortable with my homeliness; we can all be good looking. Out me or not, RYP; I don’t care. I will out myself in good time anyway, so I always figure that I’m accountable, in no small part to my chain of command, who know exactly who I am. I also explained in these pages, long before I learned your lying name, why I stand pseudonymous. Those who have read me for a long time understand that. Don’t act like you’re doing me a favor.

    When I need a lecture from a war profiteer about how to do my “taxpayer-funded” job as a Soldier, I’ll pull it out of you in wheezing gasps. At that point you’ll be able to reach around yourself.

  8. coffeypot says:

    I believe you are wasting good ink in arguing with a Liberal media whore. They are so vocal because they are so small. Without the written word, no matter if they speak the truth or lie like a Obama, they would be NOTHING.

    Blue, you serve a bigger purpose and can be proud of your deeds all your life, where as, people like RYP (does that actually stand for Really Yellow Pussy) will have to whine, grovel and beg for respect for the rest of his life. Keep on keeping on. I feel my tax dollars are well spent.

  9. Jean says:

    Blue, since some of those are my tax dollars… I’m putting you in for a raise!

  10. fnord says:

    As a former student of anthropology, I just cant believe that a anthropology professor wrote that drivel. Instead of analysing patterns of behaviour and interaction, he *assumes motives* in the subjects he is discussing, an anthropological praxis that went out of style with open racism. He assumes that the pop-centric mission is a mission undertaken only because the marines are not allowed to burn and loot, basically casting them as violent barbarians. Somehow he can not seem to get into his mind that while policies may be wrong, the folks set to execute them are not necessarily evil bloodthirsty monsters.

    Personally, Im so hard left that folks like the professor dont want to talk to me, as I disturb their dualistic perspective of life (and have dirty nails). It sickens me to read such a vulgar and downright stupid attempt at tackling a couple of very real problems, such as the association between NGOs and army units, and the ongoing debacle of Bangram. By gloating over the death of a colleague, he crosses the line and goes from being merely annoying (and stupid) to being revolting (and stupid).

  11. Greyhawk says:

    “Sure, that’s frustrating, but we’ve got to deal with it,” said Capt. Zachary Martin, commander of Golf Company.

    Sounds as if the reporter was asking him for a quote that included the word “frustrating”.

    The word, as I’m certain the reporter well knows, has degrees of meaning. All of us are “frustrated” continuously to one degree or another in carrying out various tasks. Red lights at intersections often frustrate my efforts to get to a certain place at a certain time. So do people in front of me who are driving slower than I want to go. I’m not the sort who will honk the car horn on these occasions, but (as folks who’ve driven with me will agree) I will often express my frustration by saying things like “Good Lord, how long is this red light?” or “C’mon dude, find the gas pedal”. I’ve never uttered any such comments loud enough to be heard outside the car.

    None of that implies I wish for an end to all traffic laws or even find them too restrictive. Even though they may appear to delay my immediate goal I know that without them my trek would likely be much worse – maybe even impossible given the number of intersections clogged with multi-car pileups (or gridlocks at best). Such rules are what we live with.

    But I’ll still curse the next red light that halts my progress, frustrating my wife’s efforts to get me to stop.

  12. Hagenmary says:

    Well, the soldier, of course. Anybody with half a brain knows that!
    A person who uses three names is either an ignorant blowhard or a nutjob serial killer. Sounds like Robert Young Pelton isn’t the kinda guy to get his delicate hands all sticky & dirty, so he’s obviously the elite, effite, effen windbag.
    Real people don’t seriously listen to this creep, do they?!

  13. I’m sure he’s already over here belittling the opinions that others have for his work, or even in regards to what they believe.

    He’s intractable and thirty years from now he’ll be saying the exact same things. Fortunately, many of his pupils will go on to have larger-than-ivory-tower life experiences and not only question but reject what he has said.

  14. membrain says:

    Maximillian Forte is an oxygen thief and unworthy of your valuable time Blue. There is no reasoning with blowhards like this who hide their own insecurities behind empty rhetoric pulled from their fevered imaginations.

    That fact that he felt the need to quote from a source so reprehensible as ryp just furthers the fact that he has no clue. ryp felt compelled to smuggle a bottle of whiskey onto an American Army base in violation of his assurances that he would do no such thing. He is reprehensible and your readers may draw their own conclusions.

    I came to comment on the one thing in you post that is irrefutable. That is that the Marines are more adept at practicing COIN than is the Army. By this I mean Big Army as opposed the Guard for example who come from many walks of life and adapt to new strategies more readily.

    Adaptation is one of the core values of the Marine Corps. There can be no better example of this than how they operated in Al Anbar in 2006-2007. The Marines embraced the now famous (but I bet not as famous as you’d like Blue) PowerPoint presentation by the late PAO CAPT Travis Patriquin. They started to work on this COIN strategy even as the finishing touches were being put on the official strategy in Washington.

    That they did so greatly increased the chances of the Surge. I wish you success with your efforts to evangelize COIN.

    For you readers not familiar with CAPT Patriquin’s PowerPoint I will leave a link to it. It’s situational of course, and therefore doesn’t fill in all the blanks as Galula does, but it is very readily grasped when considered in the situation on the ground in Al Anbar at the time.

    http://abcnews.go.com/images/us/how_to_win_in_anbar_v4.pdf

    It makes so much sense that you’d think even Max Forte should be able to grasp it. But he can’t. The Marines he maligns DID!!!

  15. anand says:

    Could some of the readers here comment at:

    http://openanthropology.wordpress.com/2009/08/13/we-are-protecting-afghan-civilians-from-ourselves/

    Maximillian Forte and many of his colleagues, including one Afghan one, seem eager for a discussion of ideas.

    Only two people have gone from this blog to Forte’s comment section. I look forward to learning from the interactions of Forte’s supporters and those who disagree with them.

  16. elf says:

    @Membrain,

    Thanks for the we understand civilian life better plug on the Guard. Sadly this lesson too is often lost on “Big Army”.

    IMO the reason the Army has so much trouble learning is because Big Army really means Big Bureaucracy and Big Overhead. That is partly a function of it’s personnel system bloating the middle and upper ranks. The USMC keeps it trimmer, actually enforces up or out ruthlessly*, so it can learn.

    *I happen to think up or out very counterproductive. That’s a whole other blog.

  17. Jack Burton says:

    Blue, in following your story I made the mistake of thinking Max had any value in life. That was before I found out he was a woman’s studies professor. Is there any more worthless course of study than that? Perhaps, but it’s in the top five.

    As for you RYP, you seem to enjoy threatening legal action against people who call you the puke that you are. I can only hope for one of two things. One, your punk ass runs into someone who knows what you are all about and puts you in your place or two, you meet an untimely end. It would be most satisfying that you do so when the people that you smear watch you get taken by terrorists and you later see your larger than it should be head and porn stache removed from your filthy body on some hadji snuff vidoe.

Post a Comment

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

\/ More Options ...
Change Theme...
  • Users » 1
  • Posts/Pages » 306
  • Comments » 1,706
Change Theme...
  • VoidVoid « Default
  • LifeLife
  • EarthEarth
  • WindWind
  • WaterWater
  • FireFire
  • LightLight

About Blue



    No Child Pages.
custom essay writing service buyanessaysonline.com