Should the bottom 10 percent of commanders be removed annually? Depends on whether you want to win!
That’s what the historical record suggests, as I have written before.
Best Defense is on summer hiatus. During this restful spell we offer re-runs from the past 12 months. This item originally ran on December 23, 2016.
That’s what the historical record suggests, as I have written before. Not all militaries do it, of course — but winning ones, like Nelson’s Royal Navy and Eisenhower’s Army, did.
I bring this up again because in reading some ancient Greek history, I noticed this sentence: “During the Peloponnesian War alone, about 11 percent of the known generalships culminated in the prosecution of the general holding the office.” (The Athenians were very tough on losers — they sent some into exile, and executed many others.)
Speaking of firings, the former G-3 for EUCOM got an unusual 4-step demotion (MG to LTC) for his swinging lifestyle.
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Thomas E. Ricks is a former contributing editor to Foreign Policy. Twitter: @tomricks1
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