Sample Chapter

IWCKI Final Cover If We Can Keep It: A National Security Manifesto for the Next Administration, by DNI Editor Chet Richards.Chapter III, “Is It War?” is now available [63 KB PDF]. This is a marketing teaser, to implant a subliminal impulse to buy the book and then tell all your friends about it.It should be on Amazon within the next couple of weeks.
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Filed in Uncategorized | 14 responses so far

14 Responses to “Sample Chapter”

  1. Fabius Maximuson 28 Jan 2008 at 12:02 am 1

    I am almost afraid to ask. How does reading this PDF “implant a subliminal impulse to buy the book”?

    It’s bad enough that theaters implant messages in the movies, forcing us to buy popcorn and soda.

  2. Cheton 28 Jan 2008 at 1:11 am 2

    You see – that proves my case! He’s totally hooked, and I’ll reel him in in a couple of weeks.

    Am I a marketing genius, or what?

  3. maximilliangcon 28 Jan 2008 at 8:19 pm 3

    Nice work Chet.

    With a thoroughness, meticulous attention to detail, and research
    that underscores your background as a mathematician.

    “Is It War?” Critical examination of the legitimacy of the
    so-called GWOT cannot be overstated, as the costs
    mount up and up and up. You cover this subject well.

    A man with a mind for both figures and words to this extent
    is a unique commodity.

    Max G.

  4. stromgren1on 28 Jan 2008 at 9:32 pm 4

    Why does reading this sample chapter remind me to buy Osinga’s book? Is it going to be an Amazon combo?

  5. Cheton 28 Jan 2008 at 10:31 pm 5

    Perhaps because they are both brilliant expositions of the major issues confronting us today?

    Or could it be that they are now both (finally!) available in paperback?

    Amazon could do worse.

    [Although the paperback of SS&W is shown on Amazon, it’s a print-on-demand book, and you might be better off ordering it directly from Routledge. Guess that means that the two-fer will have to be C2W and IWCKI].

  6. dckinderon 28 Jan 2008 at 10:48 pm 6

    It might be useful to apply the Aristotelean terms “essential” and “accidental,” here.

    Sun Tzu’s wars would be “essential” according to this definition.

    However, there have been many “wars” that have been, notwithstanding Sun Tzu, accidental, they did not penetrate to the core of our society. The Indian Wars, for example, or Pershing’s expedition against Pancho Villa.

    I am not passing judgment on the subjective merits of a war by classifying it as either “essential” or “accidental.” However, an “accidental” war would not justify the deference to the executive or the curtailment of civil liberties that an essential war might well demand. Nor would “the troops” merit any special support; nor patriotism be all that much of an issue.

    It could be quite possible to blunder into an essential war which one had thought would be merely accidental. For example, the numerous Congressmen who traveled out to view the First Battle of Bull Run probably thought they would witness a quick finish to an accidental war. On the other hand, patriotism being the last refuge of a scoundrel, such fellows would gin up an accidental war as a pretext for a domestic agenda.

  7. captainfarison 30 Jan 2008 at 7:58 pm 7

    At TAC HQ our intel director used to say, “What are we, a self-licking ice-cream cone?” I am astonished that anyone could think this sample chapter had any content at all. It was only opinions and supposition and straw-man nonsense. and it was short enough to be laughable.

    I’m completely in agreement that the public discourse about the War on Terror is pathetic, but within the DOD these questions are handled routinely and with far more attention to detail. I’m not saying they get it “right” in the DOD today–after all, I’m retired–but they at least deal with the questions in concrete terms.

    Just last week at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey a lame NPS professor put a nutty anti-war “scholar” on the stage to waste all the officers’ time with many of the same “ideas” and questions.

    Are all the contributors here just rocking-chair inmates?

  8. Fabius Maximuson 31 Jan 2008 at 2:53 am 8

    Captain Fairis, I understand your reactions upon reading this chapter. I too often feel this way when reading about geopolitical strategy, even when reading my own writings.

    This chapter is “opinions and supposition”, just like similar works by Clausewitz and van Creveld. As is much of the DOD’s Quadrennial Defense Review. As are, in different realms, the books by Thomas Kuhn and Freud. All have, I suspect, been criticized in the same terms as you have here.

    These things can only be considered at a high level by abstractions. Nor is it possible to provide proofs, unlike physics. So your comments might be true, but tell us little.

    As you note, DOD operational and tactical papers “are handled routinely and with far more attention to detail” and “in concrete terms.” But, like the Schlieffen Plan, do they brilliantly execute disastrous strategy?

    Perhaps you could share your specific objections to the material in this chapter.

    As for this chapter being “short enough to be laughable”, you say that as if it were a bad thing! I do not know the correct length for a chapter — but I have more often wished that editors excised text than regretted that the author did not say more. I recall no chapters of Clausewitz so short as to leave me laughing, unfortunately.

  9. Fabius Maximuson 31 Jan 2008 at 4:42 pm 9

    Do I hear Sun Tzu laughing in Heaven at the comment about a Chapter “short enough to be laughable”?

  10. judasnooseon 01 Feb 2008 at 12:34 pm 10

    I disagree with maximilliangc, who claimed to find:

    “… a thoroughness, meticulous attention to detail, and research
    that underscores your background as a mathematician.”

    Page 30 has a line that reads:
    “The main risk is that we will do the very things to ourselves, in the name of
    fighting the “war,” that bin Laden fanaticizes doing to us.”

    Reduce American unemployment, hire an American proof-reader.

    Bin Laden might radicalize people, and he might fantasize about fantasies, but neither bin Laden nor anyone else “fanaticizes” about doing anything.

  11. maximilliangcon 01 Feb 2008 at 12:44 pm 11

    Link / The US Paranoid Phycie

  12. maximilliangcon 01 Feb 2008 at 1:08 pm 12

    “At TAC HQ our intel director used to say”
    “Are all the contributors here just rocking-chair inmates?”

    Dear Captian Farris, Sir,

    Since you are apparently so very much smarter and insightfull than any of
    the rest of us, or perhaps even combined ?

    Could you please explain how it is and why the US military YOU claim to serve
    has Failed to produce a decisive victory in the GWOT in Iraq, after 5 years of concerted effort and countless hundereds of billions of hard earned US tax payers dollars expended ?

    End of the 5th year of continuous unresolved conflict, US (strongest military in the world (self proclaimed )) casualties are on the rise again.

    US losses continue,

    Disasters continue, Despite US Militaries efforts,

    US expendature in Iraq.

    Sir, Please explain.

    Enlighten us, but please refrain from common cliches, such as
    “”they” hate us for our freedom” or, “Liberty dosn’t come cheap.”

    Sincercely Maximillian

  13. maximilliangcon 01 Feb 2008 at 1:14 pm 13

    “I disagree with maximilliangc, who claimed to find:”

    I was judging the piece on content, and viceral impact,
    I am not nor claim to be an editorial proof reader.

    You’re welcome to your small minded crtique of minor spelling
    and grammatical variance.


  14. maximilliangcon 11 Feb 2008 at 5:41 pm 14

    Extending the 9-11 and legacy of US reaction under President Bush II.