Calling a Spade a Spade

A lesson learned in Desert Storm that is “applicable today in spades” is that “strong, decisive leadership from the top down” is necessary for military success, said retired Gen. John Loh, who served as Vice Chief of Staff during Desert Storm. “President [George H.W.] Bush gave clear directions. He set the military objectives … He let the military develop our own air and ground campaigns,” said Loh during an AFA Mitchell Institute event in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday. Bush “did not interfere. … He said, ‘You military guys give me a good plan and you stay out of the politics,'” he added. The lesson stands in “stark contrast” to today’s campaign against ISIS, said Loh, who also noted that after Bush stopped the war, he didn’t get the US into “endless, mindless nation building.” Instead, he set up a no-fly zone, which he said works if “done properly.”