Friedrich Nietzsche said, “War makes the victor stupid.” America’s deceptively easy tactical victory in 1991 lulled the Army’s senior leaders, a class formerly known for its healthy appreciation for war into a state of irrational over confidence. The generation of senior leaders, men like Generals William E. Depuy and Paul F. Gorman, that retrieved the U.S. Army from the ashes of the Vietnam War recognized that building capability is not just about “new things.”
25 years after Operation Desert Storm, the lessons of history are forgotten and the United States Army’s post-Cold War surplus of military power is gone. The outcome is today’s confused and decayed American ground combat force, a force burdened with an anachronistic and expensive single-service organization for combat that includes too many echelons of C2. New capabilities emerge through the integration of new technology with human capital inside new organizations.
Members of congress know that the Army’s current attempts to breathe new life into comatose concepts are not the starting points for creative thinking about current and future conflicts. The LRSG will change this condition in favor of new types of Army combat forces; forces-in-being, ready to deploy and fight from a rotational readiness posture for employment under Joint Command. The LRSG can lead the way to Army reform and reorganization, a process that is at least 20 years overdue.