The Great War on Terror shall be won with Powerpoint.
[Army Lt. General David] McKiernan had another, smaller but nagging issue: He couldn't get Franks to issue clear orders that stated explicitly what he wanted done, how he wanted to do it, and why. Rather, Franks passed along PowerPoint briefing slides that he had shown to Rumsfeld: "It's quite frustrating the way this works, but the way we do things nowadays is combatant commanders brief their products in PowerPoint up in Washington to OSD and Secretary of Defense…In lieu of an order, or a frag [fragmentary order], or plan, you get a bunch of PowerPoint slides…[T]hat is frustrating, because nobody wants to plan [img] against PowerPoint slides."
(Here's briefing standards *.ppt
, and some earlier governmental [pdf]
uses of PowerPoint [Cryptome
, along with one from ABCNEWS making the case against Iran
.) Also, here are previously related MeFi PowerPoint threads on the Downing Street Memos
and the Columbia disaster
posted by rzklkng
on Aug 17, 2006 -
This is a list of known or suspected U.S. Underground Bases, the purpose of each (hey, I'm just passing on the reports...), how they're set up and any other info known about them. Although most of these are supposed to be a secret, this list is culled from publicly available records (is that good or bad?) and of course people who worked in them, live by them or those who have retired and offer info. Some wish to remain anonymous. Some have written to me with stories that have been terrifying - just to tell me things - not meaning for me to put them up.
posted by Postroad
on Jul 21, 2006 -
If you're interested in military geography, this
ebook from the National Defense University website should be good reading for you.
posted by Heywood Mogroot
on Jul 11, 2006 -
The largest gathering
of Navy ships in the Pacific since the Vietnam war is happening right now, off the coast of Guam. Valiant Shield 06
, the first in a series of proposed biennial joint war-games
, is a massive military training exercise
involving three Carrier Strike groups
, more than 300 air craft, and 22,000 personnel. While primarily an ASW event
, all branches of the military are there practicing one thing
. The Department of Defense has invited a number of other counties to watch the games, including China
for the first time ever. Some believe
the game was just designed to put a scare into North Korea
(Not true, it's been in planning for a year).
But how does one run a massive war simulation
? Well, you just find yourself a copy of OneSAF
] or JSAF
(uh, among others
]) and you're good to go. (Previously on Metafilter: MC '02
posted by Fidel Cashflow
on Jun 22, 2006 -
a Eugene soldier, has been arrested for refusing to return to Iraq after leave. She reports that she was sexually harassed
by superiors. She was picked up at home by Homeland Security agents (according to local heresay) and held in Lane County Jail overnight, before being transferred to Fort Lewis in Washington.
More local news here.
(Disclaimer: I attempted to link a Military.com story on it, for balance, but was unable to.)
posted by Danf
on Jun 15, 2006 -
Never Coming Home
is about the families of five young men killed in Iraq. Slate
presents a short documentary that focuses on the bereavement of the parents, or in one case, a brother. This portrait of grief and sacrifice is brought to life through the use of still photography and the recorded voices of family members.
posted by ND¢
on Jun 12, 2006 -
When I Came Home:
Iraq War veteran Herold Noel suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder and lives out of his car in Brooklyn. Using Noel's story as a fulcrum, this doc examines the wider issue of homeless U.S. military veterans-from Vietnam to Iraq-who have to fight tooth-and-nail to receive the benefits promised to them by their government.
posted by riley370
on May 21, 2006 -
Stitching Together Lives Torn Apart.
In a war with no fixed front, military hospitals in Iraq are closer than ever to the places where American troops are felled — most often by roadside bombs, but also by rockets, mortars and gunshots. Many of the most seriously wounded would have died in previous wars. In Vietnam, soldiers often bled to death before reaching a hospital. Because the wounded in Iraq are evacuated so quickly, 96% of those who make it alive to the Balad and Baghdad hospitals are saved. On the battlefield, medics are better-prepared. The lowliest grunt is given specialized lifesaver training. New blood-clotting agents and improved field bandages have helped save lives.
The amputation rate in Iraq is double that of previous wars. Many soldiers face the rest of their lives without arms or legs, or with severe brain damage. The LATimes special reporting: The Lifeline (graphic photo)
, part one of three.
posted by PenguinBukkake
on Apr 1, 2006 -
US Troop poll results in: 72% of American troops serving in Iraq think the U.S. should exit the country within the next year, and nearly one in four say the troops should leave immediately
. In other news, 58% of Americans think the troops should stay
. Back to the troops: 85% said the U.S. mission is mainly “to retaliate for Saddam’s role in the 9-11 attacks,” 77% said they also believe the main or a major reason for the war was “to stop Saddam from protecting al Qaeda in Iraq.”
posted by caddis
on Feb 28, 2006 -
US Sgt enlists Canadian hackers to take down weblog?
Apparently a US chaplain posted some information about visiting a base that doesn't exist. Some networking people are concerned and since Canada's hockey team was out early in the Olympics, thought some Canadian hackers may be able to help...
posted by Coop
on Feb 24, 2006 -
UAE, Jolted by Port Deal, Is Key Western Arms Buyer
The United Arab Emirates (UAE), the centre of a growing controversy over its proposed management of U.S. port terminals, is one of the world's most prolific arms buyers and a multi-billion-dollar military market both for the United States and Western Europe.
posted by Postroad
on Feb 24, 2006 -
US Army Teaches Troops How to Pick a Spouse
"Army chaplains are trying to teach troops how to pick the right spouse, through a program called "How To Avoid Marrying a Jerk. ... It teaches the lovestruck to pace themselves with a R.A.M. chart — the Relationship Attachment Model — which basically says don't let your sexual involvement exceed your level of commitment or level of knowledge about the other person."
I can't decide if this is common sense or takes all the fun out of love. If, indeed, there is any fun in it. Details on the programme can also be found at www.nojerks.com
posted by badlydubbedboy
on Feb 7, 2006 -
He wasn't asked. He didn't tell. Now he's out — and discharged.
Eye-opening tale of Jeff Howe, courtesy of Raw Story. After 9/11, feeling personally unfulfilled and wanting to serve his country, Howe enlisted at the age of 29. Knowing he was gay but realizing that Army guidelines forbade his kind, he re-entered the closet, underwent basic training, and was shipped to Iraq. After a two-year stint on the front lines, with five commendations, he returned stateside. Then he was stop-lossed, shipped back to Iraq, and started writing a blog. That began a chain of events that, through no apparent fault of his own — or loose lip-flapping — led to Jeff Howe and the Army parting company.
posted by rob511
on Feb 7, 2006 -
Army officials are investigating allegations that as many as seven members of the 82nd Airborne Division
appeared on a gay pornography web site.
Authorities at Fort Bragg have begun an inquiry into whether the paratroopers' actions violated the military conduct code. Although the site in question has apparently now been removed
, the issue has once again highlighted the military's unofficial policy of "Don't ask, don't tell." Does this incident show that it is now finally time to drop this discriminatory policy, thus finally allowing homesexual officers to serve their country
without having to stay in the closet? Or is there a legitimate need for this policy to remain in use in the armed forces?
posted by Effigy2000
on Jan 30, 2006 -
are supposed to come home with their coffins draped with the American flag -- greeted by a color guard. But in reality, many are arriving as freight on commercial airliners -- stuffed in the belly of a plane with suitcases and other cargo."
posted by EarBucket
on Dec 10, 2005 -
The Supreme Court heard arguments yesterday in Rumsfeld
, a case
challenging the Solomon Amendment
, a US federal law that allows the government to cut federal funding to universities that refuse to allow military recruiting on campus. FAIR is a coalition of law schools challenging this law on the basis that the US military's policy of prohibiting open homosexuals
from serving violates the schools' anti-discrimination policies
(see section 6-3). Summing the issue up nicely, the dean of one law school said of the US military
, "If it were a private employer who discriminated on the basis of sexual orientation, race or gender, we wouldn't allow them here on campus." .rm C-SPAN coverage here
posted by thirteenkiller
on Dec 7, 2005 -
Imperial Grunts: With the Army Special Forces in the Philippines and Afghanistan—laboratories of counterinsurgency. Robert Kaplan's
has been excerpted over the last while in the Atlantic Monthly, and it's an amazingly relevant and enthralling book. It draws several parallels that are perhaps underrepresented in the media, such as the the similarities between the Iraqi and Afghani insurgency and the the Philippine-American War
. It's also an incredible look at the logistics and tactics involved in fighting wars, both at the forward-operating Special Forces level and within the macro "Big Army" bureaucracy. The focus of the book is the status and abilities of American "empire", its use of power and its goals.
posted by loquax
on Dec 7, 2005 -
"The world's most powerful military has devoted its considerable resources to making an energy bar, and the results are impressive." Finally, you too can enjoy the delicious cuisine of the U.S. Military without having to join.
posted by XQUZYPHYR
on Nov 27, 2005 -
Women are prohibited
from being assigned to combat roles, but some still find themselves on the front lines. "Before this war, people only imagined how women would react in combat roles and thought that they couldn't handle it ... Now we see that women are bonding with the men and not going to pieces." Also, an interview
with Kayla Williams, author of 'Love My Rifle More Than You'
posted by Alison
on Nov 21, 2005 -
Razzle Dazzle Camouflage
"During World War I, the British and Americans faced a serious threat from German U-boats, which were sinking allied shipping at a dangerous rate. All attempts to camouflage ships at sea had failed, as the appearance of the sea and sky are always changing. Any color scheme that was concealing in one situation was conspicuous in others. A British artist and naval officer, Norman Wilkinson, promoted a new camouflage scheme that was derived from the artistic fashions of the time, particularly cubism. Instead of trying to conceal the ship, it simply broke up its lines and made it more difficult for the U-boat captain to determine the ship's course. The British called this camouflage scheme 'Dazzle Painting.' The Americans called it 'Razzle Dazzle.'"
posted by hall of robots
on Nov 4, 2005 -
Double Plus Ungood
--so there's this soldier in Iraq with a blog, All The King's Horses
. He usually complains a little, tells readers about what he does, talks about the stop-loss thing that's keeping him in Iraq, etc. So, the Operation Truth site posts something by him,
and the next thing you know, the blog is dead, and an unwilling public apology and retraction and statement of support for Bush and his leadership is posted. ... it breaks my heart to say that this will be my last post on this blog. I wish I could just stop there, but I can not. The following also needs to be said:
For the record, I am officially a supporter of the administration and of her policies. ...
posted by amberglow
on Oct 23, 2005 -
Bush teleconference with troops staged.
Nothing in the article says who
is responsible for organizing the staged question and answer session, The White House, military officials, or others in the defense department. Just that it infact was staged, and that the troops were coached for 45 minutes prior to the actual teleconference. When Bush, in an unscripted move, asked an officer if he had anything to say, he stammered through a sentence, in stark contrast to the well put together responses to all the other questions, thanking the President and saying, "I like you." More PR from the Bush administration.
posted by SirOmega
on Oct 13, 2005 -
Bush Ignores Generals and Admirals, Again
Once again, President Bush is ignoring the good advice of the most experienced military officers, and endangering our troops in the process. A host of retired flag officers are asking the Supreme Court to stop Bush's military tribunals because it destroys our moral credibility abroad.
posted by expriest
on Oct 13, 2005 -