Beyond Guns and Steel: A War Termination Strategy

By Dominic J. Caraccilo | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 5
The Missing Link:
The Interagency Struggle

Over the years, the interagency system has become so lethargic and dys-
functional that it inhibits the ability to apply the vast of the U.S. govern-
ment on problems. You see this inability to synchronize in our operations
in Iraq and Afghanistan, across our foreign policy, and in our response to
Katrina.

—Gen. Wayne Downing, Former Commander-in-Chief,
U.S. Special Operations Command

As the argument goes, you can’t lead a horse to the water and make it drink if you don’t have a horse. Or even worse, what happens if you have a horse, but there is no water? The horse in this analogy represents resourcing; the water (or the water dispensing system) represents the plan to dispense those resources.

We are at a time in history where the “nation,” as a whole, will never be at war again. Only small facets of our national government are fighting the fight. As a Tennessee Congressional Representative so eloquently put it a few years ago at a speech at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, “The military is at war and the rest of the nation is at the mall.”1 This chapter is a study of interagency inadequacies in our government. These inadequacies have had a direct impact on the inability to plan for any type of reasonable conflict resolution in time of war.

The United States has a predilection for neat categories of activity and clear divisions of labor. One manifestation of this tendency is emphasis on a clear division between military and political realms and a related belief in a clean separation of military and civilian activities. However, war is a complicated and messy human phenomenon that defies easy categorization. The fundamental political core of war admits to few natural limits. The stakes of war are usually profound, and therefore, the effective remedies can be no less intense.2

-130-

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Beyond Guns and Steel: A War Termination Strategy
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Contents vii
  • Foreword ix
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1 - The Fog of Postwar 21
  • Chapter 2 - War Termination Strategy Goes Webster 57
  • Chapter 3 - The Good 82
  • Chapter 4 - The Bad 106
  • Chapter 5 - The Missing Link- The Interagency Struggle 130
  • Chapter 6 - The Nesting of Goals and Objectives to Achieve an End 145
  • Chapter 7 - The Art of Ending War 150
  • Epilogue 161
  • Appendix - Agreement on Ending the War and Restoring Peace in Viet-Nam 165
  • Notes 177
  • Bibliography 197
  • Index 211
  • About the Author 221
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