Oct. 1, 2010

Short Term, Long Term

“In the short term, we will continue to see greater demand for Air Force capabilities in relatively uncontested environments. In the future, however, we are more likely to encounter the global proliferation of precision weapons, coupled with an increasing requirement for long-range strike and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) in areas guarded by increasingly capable, agile defenses.”—Gen. Norton A. Schwartz, USAF Chief of Staff, CSAF’s Vector, July 4.

Reserve Force Bargain

“Trading away highly experienced reserve component personnel to invest in (active duty personnel and operations) is a suboptimal choice. … Reserve forces are ready, available, and accessible to fulfill operational requirements. … They can be sustained at significantly lower cost than full-time active forces.”—Lt. Gen. Charles E. Stenner Jr., commander, Air Force Reserve Command, Macon Telegraph, Aug. 3.

The Water Is Rising

“All I know is that there’s a lot more water out there.”—Adm. Gary Roughead, Chief of Naval Operations, on reports of rising ocean levels, Boston Globe, July 7.

Some Call It Duplication

“One man’s duplication is another man’s competitive analysis.”—Retired Air Force Lt. Gen. James R. Clapper Jr., hearing on nomination to be director of national intelligence, Washington Post, July 21.

Ready in Korea

“The United States of America and its airpower will be there, and its naval power will be there, should we need to deter and, or, defeat North Korea.”—USAF Lt. Gen. Jeffrey A. Remington, deputy commander of US Forces Korea, Stars and Stripes, July 26.

Go Ahead and Cheat

“Because the United States will retain a diverse triad of strategic forces, any Russian cheating under the treaty would have little effect on the assured second-strike capabilities of US strategic forces.”—James N. Miller, the Pentagon’s leading authority on nuclear arms, Associated Press, July 21.

Time To Leave

“I do not think we should be spending money to have troops in Germany 65 years after World War II. We have a terrible deficit and we have to cut back. NATO was a wonderful concept. But 61 years later, I think it’s time to say our Western European allies should be on their own. We’ll cooperate with them, but we shouldn’t be subsidizing their defense.”—Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), leading House effort to cut US defense spending, Stars and Stripes, July 22.


“Iran doesn’t seem to be paying much attention to the sanctions. We engage. They continue to move forward. We vote for sanctions. They continue to move forward. We try to deter, to dissuade. They continue to move forward.”—Michael V. Hayden, retired Air Force general and director of the CIA from 2006 to 2009, CNN, “State of the Union,” July 25.

Don’t Depend on Them

“In contested airspace—a more plausible scenario for future conflicts—today’s UAS [unmanned aerial systems] would be extremely vulnerable.”—Gen. Roger A. Brady, outgoing commander of US Air Forces in Europe, Air Force Times, Aug. 9.

We’re Innocent, He Ascertained

“None of the information released by WikiLeaks has ever led to physical injury of any person so far as can be ascertained, and we try hard to ascertain that fact.”—Julian Assange, founder of WikiLeaks, on open posting on his website of 76,000 classified documents related to the war in Afghanistan, Washington Post interview, July 28.

Blood on Their Hands

“Mr. Assange can say whatever he likes about the greater good he thinks he and his source are doing, but the truth is they might already have on their hands the blood of some young soldier or that of an Afghan family.”—Adm. Michael G. Mullen, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Pentagon news briefing, July 29.

CIA Covert Option

“The US military will not achieve anything resembling victory in Afghanistan, no matter how noble the objective and heroic the effort. It’s time to face this reality. We should start by developing a new covert action plan to be implemented by the Central Intelligence Agency. The strategy should focus on forging the kinds of relationships necessary to keep Afghanistan from re-emerging as al Qaeda’s staging ground once our forces depart, and also on continuing the hunt for Osama bin Laden.”—Jack Devine, former CIA deputy director of operations and head of CIA Afghan Task Force 1986-87, Wall Street Journal, July 29.

Minor Detail

“We think the statement is very clear. It puts forth the factual foundation and it expresses the council’s judgment that the attack on the ship is to be condemned and that no further attacks against the Republic of Korea should be contemplated.”—Susan E. Rice, US ambassador to the UN, on Security Council draft resolution about the sinking of South Korean ship that did not mention it was done by North Korea, New York Times, July 9.

New Phase in Iraq

“Make no mistake, our commitment in Iraq is changing—from a military effort led by our troops to a civilian effort led by our diplomats. And as we mark the end of America’s combat mission in Iraq, a grateful America must pay tribute to all who served there.”—President Obama, Disabled American Veterans conference, Aug. 2.

If Diplomacy Fails

“If diplomatic and economic pressures do not compel Iran to terminate its nuclear program, the US military has the capability and is prepared to launch an effective, targeted strike on Tehran’s nuclear and supporting military facilities.”—Former Sen. Charles S. Robb (D-Va.) and retired USAF Gen. Charles F. Wald, Washington Post, July 9.