Some, though not all of the appointments of the previous administration had a strong tinge of the political, and, going beyond that, personal loyalty, demanded by then-POTUS. This deprived DoD of the best possible civilian expertise.
If DoD were a civilian organization, uniform members would be the point-men/women. Most officers have advanced degrees. But modern warfare is so complex, it is beyond the capacity of these individuals to have more than concentrated knowledge. Command, strategy, and tactics are the consuming occupations. By themselves, they make a life.
A recent Pentagon study has a startling conclusion, that in some cases, forces within the military don’t know how to accomplish their assigned missions. This is exemplified by at least one massive failure in procurement, the littoral combat ship, with two deficiencies:
- The first four, virtually new ships are to be retired, due to construction defects that cannot be economically remedied.
- Conceived when the Philippines was considered a stalwart ally, these lightly armed chameleons would have had thousands of miles of coastline to evade the Chinese Navy. They are not now survivable ships.
East Asia has changed, so the mission must change as well. In the near future, relative strengths will be determined by cruise missiles, torpedoes, and logistics, followed later by directed energy weapons. Logistics may be the second most daunting problem. The most serious problem is erosion of U.S. soft power.
Since the advisory boards were involved in defining this mission, it makes sense to reach out for fresh thought. We can aspire to ideals, but we must not let them dictate.
There is likely one more reason of sinister necessity. In arrests from the Capitol insurrection, military veterans are over represented. If insurrectionist sentiment had any representation in the advisory committees, it could have facilitated subversion of the military chain of command. The preservation of it is vital to defense of the Constitution.