Jan. 1, 2003

It’s Boots, Boots, Boots

“In any scenario, the Army soldier brings closure, not precision guided munitions, not surgical strikes, and not minimalist combat events.”– Gen. Gordon R. Sullivan, former Army Chief of Staff, Army Magazine, October.

Bad News For Bad Guys

“The killing in Yemen of a suspected senior al Qaeda terrorist by missiles fired from an unmanned American aircraft marks a new and deadly stage in the technology of warfare. … No terrorist can ever again count on sanctuary in countries beyond the reach of American forces: The new weapon has made a reality of President Reagan’s claim 15 years ago that terrorists ‘can run but they can’t hide.'”-Editorial, The Times of London, Nov. 6.

Progressive Perspective

“Now some Democrats and progressive Americans are asking the unthinkable about an Administration they increasingly believe to be ruled by thugs and renegades. Did government gangsters murder the United States’ most liberal legislator?”-Columnist Ted Rall, on the death of Sen. Paul Wellstone (D-Minn.) in an airplane crash, Ted Rall Online, Oct. 29.

The People’s Choice

“Our leader, President Saddam Hussein, may God bless him, has won 100 percent of the votes.”-Izzat Ibrahim, Saddam’s deputy, after election in Iraq, quoted in the Washington Post, Oct. 17.

That Was Then

“A kind of anti-Americanism may have become a permanent feature of German politics. This is especially painful for those of us who actively nurtured what we consider one of the proudest achievements of American postwar foreign policy: the return of Germany to the community of nations as an equal, respected, and indispensable member. It was a journey marked by the Berlin Airlift; the Marshall Plan; support for Germany’s membership in NATO and the European Community; close cooperation in two further Berlin crises; American support for the German reconciliation with the East; American leadership in negotiating a final agreement on access to Berlin; and finally, American unconditional support for German unification despite the hesitations of other allies.”-Henry Kissinger, former secretary of state, Washington Post, Oct. 30.

Amphibious Days Are Past

“The amphibious aspect of our history is in our past. The expeditionary aspect is in the present and the future. … People who don’t know us still think of us as a fairly slow moving force coming from the sea, hitting the beach, fighting for an island, raising the flag, and declaring victory.”-Gen. James L. Jones Jr., Commandant of the Marine Corps, as quoted in Aerospace Daily, Oct. 25.

New Way to Eat

“Yes. A packaged peanut butter and jelly sandwich that has an unrefrigerated shelf life of three years at 80 degrees, or six months at 100 degrees.”-Jerry Whitaker, spokesman for the Army’s Soldier Systems Center, on rations now in development, quoted in the Washington Times, Oct. 30.

We Talk and Talk

“I would guess that I’ve probably met more with the senior military leadership in the United States of America in the last 20 months than any other Secretary possibly ever did in four years.”-Secretary of Defense Donald H. Rumsfeld, denying that he shrugs off advice from military leaders, Pentagon briefing, Oct. 17.

Advice From Wesley Clark

“President Bush has a vision that the US should be the first to strike and will never be militarily challenged again. It’s an incomplete vision. Those of us who have fought in wars know you don’t make friends when you use weapons.”-Retired Army Gen. Wesley K. Clark, NATO commander in Operation Allied Force, quoted in the Fayetteville (N.C.) Observer, Oct. 16.

So Close

“What I really blame the Bush Administration for is not paying attention to the Arab-Israeli problem. It was our daily fare. And while we did not solve it … just the fact that we were dealing with it all the time, I think gave a sense of hope. And we were so close to getting it done.”-Madeleine Albright, former secretary of state, in an interview with Detroit Free Press, Oct. 23.

Why They Need Nukes

“US imperialism looks down upon those countries weak in military power, forces them to accept its brigandish demands, and makes them a target of its military intervention and aggression. … As a stick is the best to beat a wolf, so are arms to fight with the imperialists.”-North Korea’s official Rodong Sinmun newspaper, Oct. 27, quoted by the Associated Press.

Throw Away the Key

“I obeyed my conscience rather than the law.”-Ana Belen Montes, as she was sentenced to 25 years in jail for spying for Cuba while working as a senior analyst for the Defense Intelligence Agency, quoted in the Washington Post, Oct. 17.

Boots in the City

“Fighting in the city is the wave of the future.”-Marine Capt. Eric Reid, to journalists participating in a “media boot camp” at Quantico, Va., quoted in the Washington Times, Nov. 25.

Privatizing the Force

“The Army must focus its energies and talents on our core competencies–functions we perform better than anyone else–and seek to obtain other needed products or services from the private sector, where it makes sense.”-Secretary of the Army Thomas E. White, in an internal memo, on the possibility that the Army will contract out nearly 214,000 military and civilian jobs to the private sector, quoted in the Washington Post, Nov. 3.