Wednesday, September 18, 2002

Overwhelming Force

An excellent piece on using enough force to not only smash the Iraqi military, but make it obvious to anybody brave enough to still be wearing an Iraqi uniform when the Abrams kick off their offensive toward Baghdad, that resistance is futile. Since I too advocate a pinning attack from the north out of Turkey to keep the Iraqis deployed up there busy, I like Trainor’s analysis even more. The key is that if the Iraqis think they might win, they will fight. If they think they will die, they will more readily quit. That difference makes quibbling over precisely how much is necessary, assuming X number of Iraqis will, without a doubt, defect, quite idiotic.

Overwhelm them and we will win quickly. I think Eisenhower said something to the effect: "Give me a battalion, and I will take a hill but with heavy casualties. Give me a division, and I will take it without a loss."

Five US divisions plus the British (a couple brigades) as the major combat maneuver elements, plus allies support units and special forces, will do the trick.

Things can go wrong in war. We can be surprised. But with a good margin of error, instead of being reasons for our defeat, those things going wrong and surprises will simply be lessons to be learned for the next war.