Best Defense

Does Gen. Allyn really believe that the Army has been ‘winning’? I’m worried

Gen. Daniel Allyn, the Army vice chief of staff, supposedly said that, “Winning is what we do in the United States Army.”

An inspection team examines a US Army (USA) AH-64 Apache helicopter that crashed during landing at Tactical Assembly Area SHELL, in Central Iraq. The helicopter is assigned to A/Company 2-101st Aviation Regiment, and was operation in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM.
An inspection team examines a US Army (USA) AH-64 Apache helicopter that crashed during landing at Tactical Assembly Area SHELL, in Central Iraq. The helicopter is assigned to A/Company 2-101st Aviation Regiment, and was operation in support of Operation IRAQI FREEDOM.

Best Defense is in summer reruns. This item originally appeared on April 3, 2015.

The other day, Gen. Daniel Allyn, the Army vice chief of staff, supposedly said that, “Winning is what we do in the United States Army.”

If he did say that, I am worried. I kind of wonder where he has been the last 13 years. Neither Iraq nor Afghanistan looks like winning to me. And so the comment smacks of denial to me. An Army led by people who won’t face facts is an Army in trouble.

I don’t know the context. Perhaps he was just boosting morale, giving a little pep talk. OK, chalk it up to good intentions — but not good leadership. The Army needs some sober self-reflection, and he is not providing it.

Perhaps one more reason to make Gen. Stan McChrystal the next chairman of the Joint Chiefs. Except this time, make sure he has a better media advisor.

Wikimedia Commons

Thomas 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 ricksblogcomment@gmail.com.

Trending Now Sponsored Links by Taboola

By Taboola

More from Foreign Policy

By Taboola