- By Thomas E. RicksThomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at email@example.com.
So many questions today, little grasshoppers.
I felt sorry for the two officers in this photo sent over to peddle the Army’s wares at Yale. Check out that defensive body language. I don’t think trinkets for the natives is the way to go.
Little voice: OK, smart guy, how would YOU pitch the Army at Yale?
I would spread out on a big table two displays. On the left side would be a bunch of books by Army officers-say, H.R. McMaster’s Dereliction of Duty, John Nagl’s Eating Soup with a Knife, Andrew Krepinevich’s The Army and Vietnam, Peter Mansoor’s Baghdad at Sunrise, Andrew Exum’s This Man’s Army, and Burgyone and Marckwadt’s The Defense of Jisr al-Doreaa, and so on. On the right would be a display of Army gear, the full battle rattle of helmet, flak jacket, weapons, and so on. I’d have a sign: “Think you can you handle both? If so, talk to us.” And maybe a follow-up question: “Wanna be part of the defining event of your generation?” There are lots of students at Yale who would be intrigued by that intellectual, physical and moral challenges.
Or: “Hey, Ivy Leaguers, wanna really freak out your parents? Join the Army!” Now that would be audacious.
(HT to Voodoo94)