Ed Driscoll


THIS IS NOT YOUR MOTHER’S MOTHER OF ALL WARS: Melana Zyla Vickers looks at how US technology and strategy in the coming war against Iraq will differ from Desert Storm in this Tech Central Station article.

(By the way, if you’d like a good introduction to how miltary technology and strategy have changed since Vietnam, this is a pretty good place to start, as well.)

All of this is a good place to hang a micro-mini-screed I’ve wanted to get off my chest since early September, when I attended a wedding of two old friends of mine up in California’s wine country. The bride’s friends, whom we were seated with, were all 35 to 45 year olds with PhDs in science, biochemistry, and other lofty fields of study–and probably each have IQs off the chart. So I was astonished, in the midst of the stereotypical “Bush is such a dummy” talk, to hear something (I forget what) “is a contradiction in terms like”…wait for it–you know it’s coming…”military intelligence”.

Groan! That line was a cliche when they were kids (I remember hearing Trapper John utter it in an early M*A*S*H episode from about 1972), and yet it’s still being hauled out today, like an old, warn-out suit that needs its elbows patched and its lapels narrowed. How many more years of laser-guided weaponry, stealth technology, unmanned aerial vehicles, and other forms of advanced, computerized technology will we need before that old chestnut is retired?

Or is that asking too much?