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Foul-mouthed maverick changed the art of war
New Zealand Herald ^ | 12/30/02 | ROGER FRANKLIN

Posted on 01/12/2003 6:16:18 AM PST by Valin

NEW YORK - The coming assault on Baghdad already has its first hero: Colonel John Boyd, a foul-mouthed, insubordinate fighter pilot who has been in his grave at Arlington National Cemetery for almost five years.

When Iraq's tyrant is brought down, that inevitable victory will be Boyd's doing. You won't hear Boyd's name being cited in Rose Garden speeches, however. Nor will the Pentagon be authorising any posthumous decorations for the man who, through 30 years of bureaucratic guerilla warfare, transformed America's military. Even though he gave them many of the tools that made Operation Desert Storm such a sweeping success in 1991, the brass continued to hate Boyd with such a passion that, as a final sign of contempt, they sent only a single general as their official representative at his funeral. But without his influence, the US would almost certainly be preparing to enter Iraq much as it fled Saigon: a vast, muscle-bound killing machine based on the assumption that big budgets and expensive weapons assured victory.

That approach didn't work in Vietnam, nor even in tiny Grenada, where a US expedition force required two days in 1983 to subdue a squad of 200 Cuban construction workers. "Thank God they have dumb sons of bitches in the Kremlin, too," Boyd fumed not long after. "If they weren't thick as ****, Grenada would prove how weak we really are." Boyd's disgust was palpable. Army units on the island couldn't call in artillery support from Navy ships because their radios worked on different frequencies. Nor could soldiers on the ground stop air strikes hitting the wrong targets. Almost 30 Americans were killed in the conflict, most the victims of friendly fire. "Grenada was confusion cubed," Boyd told me in 1985, after the Pentagon released a report whitewashing the invasion's flaws and follies. "Our top guys know the first rule of warfare: always protect your rear."

Boyd devoted the latter half of his career to catching those generals with their pants down. The first half had been spent in the cockpit, first over Korea and later as an instructor at the US Air Force "Top Gun" flight schools. Had he been just another joystick virtuoso, Boyd would have had a traditional career: step by step up the ladder until retirement, when he could have been expected to join one of the weapons companies, pitching former colleagues on the latest, gold-plated guns, planes and tanks. That's how the procurement game had always been played at the Pentagon, where a weapon's usefulness was of secondary importance to its cost. Big budgets still mean bigger staffs for the Pentagon's project-development officers - and bigger salaries, too, when they leave to work for General Dynamics, Grumman, or Boeing. To Boyd, the system produced "gold-plated **** shovels" that "hurt us more than the enemy".

So, after rewriting the air combat rulebook he began looking at the broader flaws in US military theory. They were, he concluded, the same ones that had led to disaster in Vietnam, the ultimate symbol of which he saw as the F-111. "The only good thing about the F-111," he said, "is that the dumbass Soviets believed our propaganda and built their very own piece of useless ****, the Backfire bomber." His idea of the perfect fighter plane was the F-16. Small, cheap and simple, it used only enough technology to make it a more efficient killing machine - fly-by-wire control systems to save the weight of hydraulics, one engine to keep it small, cut costs and make it hard to target.

When superiors tried to silence his criticisms by pushing him into a dead-end office job, Boyd developed the concept on the sly by "stealing" a million dollars worth of computer time, giving his brainchild a variety of misleading names and slipping the evolving concept past bureaucratic enemies before they realised what they had just authorised. It earned him a wealth of grief. There will be plenty of F-16s over Iraq pretty soon, but that won't be Boyd's greatest contribution. Of much greater impact will be the culmination of his life's work, a treatise on military tactics that he penned after retiring to Florida and seeing the F-16 accepted, against all odds, as a frontline mainstay.

"He called it Observe-Orient-Decide-Act - commonly known as the OODA loop," says Boyd's biographer Robert Coram. "Simply rendered, the OODA loop is a blueprint for the manoeuvre tactics that allow one to attack the mind of an opponent, to unravel its commander even before a battle begins."

To Coram and others, including Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, Boyd is "the most influential military thinker since Sun Tzu wrote The Art of War 2400 years ago". So why should pacifists cheer the memory of a man whose life was devoted to perfecting the use of martial force? Because, if the Iraq invasion goes even remotely according to plan, Saddam's downfall will be short and relatively bloodless. Isolated, unable to trust his generals and with his every move tracked by the cheap, plentiful, all-seeing Predator drones that Boyd also helped to develop, Saddam will have two options: surrender or perish.

The Baghdad campaign will reflect Boyd's greatest insight, the one he borrowed from Sun Tzu. The sweetest victory, said the Chinese sage, is the one that does not demand a battle. Even if you have the weaponry to win it at a canter.


TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs; Government
KEYWORDS: militaryreform; pentagon
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
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1 posted on 01/12/2003 6:16:18 AM PST by Valin
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To: Valin
If one tenth of what this article says is true, I'd be honored to place flowers at Colonel Boyd's grave myself.
2 posted on 01/12/2003 6:27:11 AM PST by Imal (Disciple of Strategery)
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To: Valin
...JOHN BOYD =

...RICK RESCORLA...


See:.. www.LzXRay.com ..
3 posted on 01/12/2003 6:27:55 AM PST by ALOHA RONNIE ( Vet-Battle of IA DRANG-1965 http://www.LzXRay.com)
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To: Imal
...I wonder how far away Hero JOHN BOYD's Graves sits from HILLARY RODHAM Murder Victim RON BROWN's..?
4 posted on 01/12/2003 6:29:51 AM PST by ALOHA RONNIE ( Vet-Battle of IA DRANG-1965 http://www.LzXRay.com)
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To: Imal
Odd article, lots of loaded words.
5 posted on 01/12/2003 6:31:57 AM PST by tet68
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To: Valin
Boyd is "the most influential military thinker since Sun Tzu wrote The Art of War 2400 years ago".

High praise.

6 posted on 01/12/2003 6:34:09 AM PST by happygrl
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To: Imal
I can't recomend this book
(John Boyd -
The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of Warfare
by
Robert Coram) highly enough!
You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll get real ticked off.
7 posted on 01/12/2003 6:36:15 AM PST by Valin (Good Luck)
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To: Valin
Re #1

It is all about sensors/guidance/communications. Spot your enemy first, coordinate your attack faster, to deliver the lethal blow fast and accurately even before he finds out.

8 posted on 01/12/2003 6:37:50 AM PST by TigerLikesRooster
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To: Valin
Good Post
Interesting article
9 posted on 01/12/2003 6:43:21 AM PST by Fiddlstix (Wanted: Used "Tag Lines" in good condition. Top prices paid for Quality. Inquire Within.)
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To: tet68
Odd article, lots of loaded words.

Definitely not an "objective" article, to be sure, but probably at least 10% true, as I suspect it may be.

10 posted on 01/12/2003 6:43:34 AM PST by Imal (Disciple of Strategery)
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To: Imal
Too bad the F-16 is really ineffective. It proved to be a poor bomber, it's primary role, in the Gulf War and received one of the lowest ratings of any weapons systems after that war. It seems from this article that Col Boyds largest contribution was the F-16 and if that's so, his legacy won't be that of a great innovater. I think there must be more to his story though, just not brought forth in this article.
11 posted on 01/12/2003 7:01:47 AM PST by Arkie2
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To: Sparta
Ping. Another Boyd article.
12 posted on 01/12/2003 7:02:17 AM PST by FreedomPoster (This space intentionally blank)
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Additional links to information about Boyd at: Foul-mouthed maverick changed the art of war
13 posted on 01/12/2003 7:03:30 AM PST by SMEDLEYBUTLER
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To: Imal
Col. John Boyd: The Most Influential Unknown Hero

By Ed Offley

Look up the official U.S. Air Force fact sheet on the F-16 Falcon, and you will read in clear but understated terms this description of what aviation experts agree is the most successful fighter aircraft ever built:

"The F-16 Fighting Falcon is a compact, multi-role fighter aircraft. It is highly maneuverable and has proven itself in air-to-air combat and air-to-surface attack. It provides a relatively low-cost, high-performance weapon system for the United States and allied nations."

First conceived in the mid-1960s, the F-16 is flown today by military pilots in 23 countries from Bahrain to Venezuela. Over 2,200 of the single-engine Falcons have been built, and the U.S. Air Force operates more than 1,380 of them. It has performed with distinction in Operation Desert Storm, Kosovo and the long-running twilight air war enforcing the Iraqi "no-fly" zones.

But nowhere in the official Air Force archives will you find the fascinating and gripping story of how this military aircraft came to be - how the F-16 was conceived and designed by a maverick Air Force pilot leading a tiny cabal of military officers and DoD civilians without the Air Force's knowledge or approval. Nor will you find how once the lightweight fighter plane left the drawing boards, the collective leadership of the Air Force waged a fierce - and ultimately unsuccessful - bureaucratic guerrilla war to have the project killed and its supporters destroyed.

Thanks to author Robert Coram, the full story of this astonishing rebellion within the corridors of the Pentagon comes to life in the informative and entertaining biography of its ringleader, Air Force Col. John Boyd.

When you read Boyd: The Fighter Pilot Who Changed the Art of War (Little, Brown and Company, New York, 2002), you will be amazed to learn that Boyd's involvement in the struggle to field an effective new fighter aircraft constitutes only one chapter of his distinguished, controversial and often contentious life.

The most amazing aspect of John Boyd's record of achievement is not that it is so profound, but rather that the pilot and his record remain unheard of to most Americans. "Boyd was one of the most important unknown men of his time," Coram writes. "He did what so few men are privileged to do: He changed the world. But much of what he did, or the impact of what he did, was either highly classified or of primary concern to the military."

Born and raised in the working-class city of Erie, Pa., Boyd was determined at an early age to succeed, and discovered the U.S. military as the vehicle for his growth. After a brief period serving as an enlisted man at the tail end of World War II, he won an officer's commission and became a fighter pilot who flew combat missions in Korea. Later, while serving as an instructor at the Fighter Weapons School in Nevada, he became known as "Forty-second Boyd" who could defeat any other pilot in mock aerial combat in that amount of time.

As a young captain, Boyd became the first military aviator to codify and formally break down the mysteries of air-to-air combat in a hand-typed memorandum, the "Aerial Attack Study," that soon became official Air Force doctrine. As a 33-year-old graduate engineering student at Georgia Tech, he pioneered a new theory of aircraft performance - the "Energy-Maneuverability Theory" - that would revolutionize the design of all future combat aircraft.

Brash, insightful and profane, Boyd outflanked the generals, cursed the defense industrialists and nurtured a small band of disciples who would grow to form the Military Reform Movement, an unofficial but influential group dedicated to fielding weapons and equipment that would enable America's military to survive and win on the battlefield - not merely line the pockets of the defense industry and its toadies in Congress and the Pentagon.

Coram's book is crammed with hilarious, outrageous and jaw-dropping anecdotes of Boyd's encounters with the brass and his own people. A chain-smoker, Boyd once set a general on fire with his cigar. Another time, Boyd so flummoxed a colonel with his masteries of the facts that the officer foamed at the mouth and fell out of his chair in a fit, prompting them to announce the invention of the Air Force "air to rug maneuver." He gleefully stole more than $1 million in computer time from an Air Force unit so that he could refine a theory on aircraft design - and bragged about it to a senior general. He tormented his supporters with late-night telephone calls that would drag on for hours. One junior aide who lived 25 miles from the Pentagon would tear himself away from Boyd's late-evening office disquisitions and drive home, only to have the phone start ringing the instant he turned the key in his door - Boyd had timed his subordinate's commute to the second.

After retiring from the Air Force as a colonel, Boyd turned down many offers from industry in order to serve as an unpaid Pentagon consultant, continuing his revolutionary work as a civilian. His focus shifted from aircraft design to the wider issue of analyzing the reasons for success in conflict. This led to Boyd's seminal work, "Patterns of Conflict," an unpublished, two-day briefing that he gave for almost two decades throughout the military. This lecture first revealed Boyd's breakthrough, the "OODA Loop" (for Observation-Orientation-Decision-Action) a theory of how military commanders can win by getting inside the mind and outpace the decision cycle of the enemy commander.

Boyd's breakthrough theory would play a pivotal, but hidden role in the shaping of the U.S. victory in Operation Desert Storm, Coram writes. Then-Secretary of Defense Dick Cheney consulted extensively with Boyd and credits the retired fighter pilot with helping him resist an initial Army plan that would have employed the coalition ground forces in a pitched battle with the Iraqi army. Instead, the Army used the now-famous "Left Hook" flanking movement to encircle and destroy the foe.

The U.S. Marine Corps also embraced Boyd's theories of "Fourth Generational Warfare" and today honor him as one of their own.

As impressive as Boyd's intellect and his drive for self-improvement stands out, one comes away from Coram's biography with an even greater respect for the fighter pilot's ironclad integrity. He set generals on fire and outflanked the bureaucrats because he saw that they were enemies of his solitary mission: To give America's fighting men and women the best tools to attain victory.

His friends and former subordinates all recall a standard Boyd speech that distilled the moral dilemma that sooner or later confronts every person working in the Pentagon: "Tiger (he called all of his favorites that), one day you will come to a fork in the road. And you are going to have to make a decision about which direction you want to go. You will have to make compromises and you will have to turn your back on your friends. But you will be a member of the club and you will get promoted and you will get good assignments. Or you can go that way and you can do something - something for your country and for your Air Force and yourself."

There is no doubt in which direction John Boyd headed.

Boyd died of cancer in 1997 and is buried at Arlington National Cemetery. But his rich legacy is preserved in two ways: Several of his longtime supporters, including Thomas P. Christie and Franklin "Chuck" Spinney, still work in the Pentagon on procurement issues. Several Boyd colleagues have also compiled a collection of his essays and briefings at their website, Defense and the National Interest, for anyone interested to read about this dedicated officer and his revolutionary theories.

Ed Offley is Editor of DefenseWatch. He can be reached at dweditor@yahoo.com.

http://sftt.org/dwa/2003/1/1/2.html
14 posted on 01/12/2003 7:03:54 AM PST by Valin (Good Luck)
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To: tet68
Old, but valid. Boyd basically postulated that the unit which can assess and react to the situation more quickly would prevail in combat. He flew F-86s against MIGs in Korea. The F-86 was, according to all standards, an inferior aircraft: slower, it couldn't climb as high, etc. However, they consistently shot down the MIGs in air to air combat. Boyd discovered that the Sabre was better at transitioning from one maneuver to the next. He created a model, called the OODA loop, to explain it. In combat, you must observe the situation, orient yourself to it, decide on a course of action, and act - then the iterative process begins again. The combatant who can cycle through the process fastest will cause his opponent to react to what he was doing one or more cycles previously. Thus, the faster cycle time accrues better and better cumulative advantage in tactical position. It's a powerful model, and Boyd is read by every great strategist in the U.S. military today. His ideas are behind the AirLand Battle Doctrine that destroyed Iraq the last time.
15 posted on 01/12/2003 7:06:33 AM PST by LouD
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To: Arkie2
The F-16 of today is not what Boyd had in mind and pushed for. What he wanted, and what it started out as was a small simple fighter. Not the multi-role plane we have today.
16 posted on 01/12/2003 7:07:10 AM PST by Valin (Good Luck)
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To: Valin

F-16 Photo stolen from Code One Online

17 posted on 01/12/2003 7:21:42 AM PST by B4Ranch
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To: Arkie2
Duh! A fighter doesn't make the best bomber? Who would of thought? The F-16 was thought of and needed by the mid 60’s; it only took Pentagon 15 years to get it built. Not the idea of the aircraft, the aircraft itself or those that fought for it's fault. Anyways, I wouldn't want to be a ground target in an area with roaming F-16's around.

Lastly, Boyd wasn't about any particular weapon, or system, he was about thinking, reacting, speedy decisions made quicker then the enemy. He was about acting faster than the enemies ability to react, thus making the enemies combined arms ineffective as a operating whole, that is, turning an enemy’s army into separate little units that can no longer work in unison.
18 posted on 01/12/2003 7:29:14 AM PST by Leisler
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Comment #19 Removed by Moderator

To: tet68

11 March 1997 

To the Editor: 

I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Colonel John Boyd, USAF (Ret). How does one begin to pay homage to a warrior like John Boyd? He was a towering intellect who made unsurpassed contributions to the American art of war. Indeed, he was one of the central architects in the reform of military thought which swept the services, and in particular the Marine Corps, in the 1980’s. From John Boyd we learned about competitive decision making on the battlefield—compressing time, using time as an ally. Thousands of officers in all our services knew John Boyd by his work on what was to be known as the Boyd Cycle or OODA Loop. His writings and his lectures had a fundamental impact on the curriculum of virtually every professional military education program in the United States—and on many abroad. In this way, he touched so many lives, many of them destined to ascend to the highest levels of military and civilian leadership. 

Those of us who knew John Boyd the man knew him as a man of character and integrity. His life and values were shaped by a selfless dedication to Country and Service, by the crucible of war, and by an unrelenting love of study. He was the quintessential soldier-scholar—a man whose jovial, outgoing exterior belied the vastness of his knowledge and the power of his intellect. I was in awe of him, not just for the potential of his future contributions but for what he stood for as an officer, a citizen, and as a man. 

As I write this, my mind wanders back to that morning in February, 1991, when the military might of the United States sliced violently into the Iraqi positions in Kuwait. Bludgeoned from the air nearly round the clock for six weeks, paralyzed by the speed and ferocity of the attack. The Iraqi army collapsed morally and intellectually under the onslaught of American and Coalition forces. John Boyd was an architect of that victory as surely as if he’d commanded a fighter wing or a maneuver division in the desert. His thinking, his theories, his larger than life influence, were there with us in Desert Storm. He must have been proud of what his efforts wrought. 

So, how does one pay homage to a man like John Boyd? Perhaps best by remembering that Colonel Boyd never sought the acclaim won him by his thinking. He only wanted to make a difference in the next war … and he did. That ancient book of wisdom—Proverbs—sums up John’s contribution to his nation: " A wise man is strong, and a man of knowledge adds to his strength; for by wise guidance you will wage your war, and there is victory in a multitude of counselors."* I, and his Corps of Marines, will miss our counselor terribly. 

Sincerely, 

* Proverbs 24:5-6 

C.C. Krulak General, 
U. S. Marine Corps 
Commandant of the Marine Corps
1

http://www.belisarius.com/modern_business_strategy/hammond/essential_boyd.htm


20 posted on 01/12/2003 7:43:41 AM PST by B4Ranch
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To: Imal
For your further consideration:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/803820/posts

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/news/813928/posts

Two more article regarding Col. Boyd. IMHO the first one is the best of the lot.

Regards

alfa6 ;>}
21 posted on 01/12/2003 7:59:21 AM PST by alfa6 (improvise; adapt; overcome)
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To: Valin
bump
22 posted on 01/12/2003 8:05:04 AM PST by Centurion2000 (Darth Crackerhead)
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To: Leisler
Duh! The F-16 was supposed to be a fighter but was so poor in that role the only thing to do with it was make it a tactical bomber, something the A-7, a much older aircraft was much better at. It's essentially a plane without a mission, an ill conceived throwback to the time of WWII when the concept of a fighter was one man, one cockpit, one engine, duking it out mano a mano with some other fighter pilot. It's an idea that passed with the advent of advanced radar and missile systems. The F-16 was a bad idea when it was conceived and hasn't proved its worth since. The F-15 is superior in the air to air role and the F-15 Strike Eagle is a far more effective bomber.
23 posted on 01/12/2003 8:20:39 AM PST by Arkie2
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To: Imal
There's always a bubbling undercurrent of ideas in the armed forces. Among the officer corps of all services, this is most common in the mid-grades, O-3 thru O-5.

Make no mistake, most "soldier on" and do their duty. But the few; envision, develop, and advance the art of war. They almost always do this behind the scene without official sanction. Rarely do they make it to Flag rank. But the changes they make are seismic.

John Boyd was one of the best of them.
24 posted on 01/12/2003 8:21:12 AM PST by DakotaGator
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To: Valin
"Almost 30 Americans were killed in the conflict, most the victims of friendly fire."

I had the honor to know one of them. In fact, this kid, SP/4 Kevin Lannon wouldn't have been there were it not for me. And, yes, that knowledge still haunts me a little bit.

SP/4 Lannon was my platoon medic when I was a Lieutenant in the now defunct 9th Infantry Division. His lifelong dream was to be an AIRBORNE RANGER. I had a buddy from college who was the Ranger Bn S1 and my own S1 was a good guy, so I did some talking to my best friend from high school was the HHC Ranger Bn CO and we worked some paperwork magic and got the kid transferred.

The day I handed him his orders (about six months before his died in the air assault on the medical school from ENEMY FIRE) he looked like a five year old about to get a ride on the town fire engine. He was thunderstruck. He wanted those orders more than anything in the world and that is my solace. To die doing something you love is not so bad is it?

25 posted on 01/12/2003 8:47:16 AM PST by ExSoldier
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To: Arkie2
F-15's, way more expensive per unit, to maintain, to man and to fly, even for America to afford. You don't need F-15's to shoot down transports, helicopters, strafe truck convoys and massed third world land units, regular costal shipping and a variety of hum drum targets that bulk out an enemy's war making abilities. Using, wearing out and losing high cost, sophisticated assets on low value targets shouldn’t, and isn’t done.

"There is a quality to quantity, all it's own" Stalin. Along your line of thinking, such that it is, we should have an entire army of multi lingual Special Forces. Nice wet dream. Not now, not ever going to happen. All services have their elites, until attrition wears down their small numbers. The Nazis loved the super weapons, but never produced enough of the next tier below them, the “good enough” weapons. For instance, German tanks were very much better, when they ran, and were available on the field. However the Shermans, were plentiful, affordable, reliable and with greater numbers and flexible tactics ate the superior German tanks up.

Anyways, the topic isn’t an aircraft; it is about Boyd and his thoughts.
26 posted on 01/12/2003 9:38:56 AM PST by Leisler
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To: ExSoldier
Buy in large, unequalled by me before or since, I have never been in a organization that as much as humanly possible, supported each other from supply to triggerpullers as much as the Green Team. It was always my feeling and observation that if you were in trouble, be it enemy, or alcohol or money, somehow, someway the Army would help you through it provided you helped yourself. I saw great effort by NCOs and Officers at cost of time and effort to themselves to help young men get through tough professional and personal problems. Even to the point of significant out of pocket cash money on a promise. Often done outside of official channels and disregarding of rules. Other than that we entertained ourselves by fighting amongst ourselves.

You did right Sir, and I am sure there is some Grenada trained MD, with his family this day, who every now and then thinks of those young men with awe and fondness. How, where and when that gratitude will manifest itself, of which I have no doubt, is know only to time and God.

27 posted on 01/12/2003 9:51:38 AM PST by Leisler
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To: TigerLikesRooster
I think another great General, whose name I forget, said the same thing, in his own way. "Get there firstest, with the mostest".
28 posted on 01/12/2003 9:54:41 AM PST by Republic of Texas
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To: ExSoldier
I had to come back to this:

"Almost 30 Americans were killed in the conflict, most the victims of friendly fire."...(and)..."I had the honor to know one of them. In fact, this kid, SP/4 Kevin Lannon ..."

Granada was a tactical joke, it's hard to say otherwise.

But as a Vietnam veteran (non-hero type) it was just about the first boost I/we got following such absurdities as the great hostage screw-up and goat-rope conducted by Carter and the overhanging sense of weakness imposed by the post-Vietnam left.

In fact, it took that victory, small as it was, and the nifty night shots of troops and hilos in Panama to re-legitimize the role of military to the American public.

The success of those two very minor campaigns was in the reaction to Clinton's crimes in Somalia. "Blackhawk Down" would have been an anti-war Fonda epic had not the earlier two dust ups been conducted and used, intentionally, to restore some luster to what democrat administrations from and including JFK had managed to foul.

No eason to feel remorse ExSoldier, everybody knows what the wings imply and very few would go there without the will to follow through.

End of rant, thank you.

29 posted on 01/12/2003 10:05:10 AM PST by norton
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To: Arkie2
Too bad the F-16 is really ineffective. It proved to be a poor bomber, it's primary role, in the Gulf War and received one of the lowest ratings of any weapons systems after that war. It seems from this article that Col Boyds largest contribution was the F-16 and if that's so, his legacy won't be that of a great innovater. I think there must be more to his story though, just not brought forth in this article.

You are correct on this one. The F-16 was probably the least effective aircraft used during Desert Storm.

This article reminds me of what the media was doing in the early 80's. They had a bunch of ex-Carter flacks (particularly one under sec of defense whose name I have forgotten) complaining that our weapons were too complex. The guy I mentioned didn't even want radar in the F-16. As it turns out, the smarter our weapons get, the easier our wins become and the fewer casualties we suffer.

30 posted on 01/12/2003 10:05:35 AM PST by saminfl
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To: sphinx; Toirdhealbheach Beucail; curmudgeonII; roderick; Notforprophet; river rat; csvset; ...
Thanks for the ping Freedom Poster. Excellent post Valin.

If you want on or off the Western Civilization Military History ping list, let me know.
31 posted on 01/12/2003 10:09:44 AM PST by Sparta (Statism is a mental illness)
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To: Sparta
Thanks for the ping Sparta
32 posted on 01/12/2003 10:50:04 AM PST by SAMWolf (To look into the eyes of the wolf is to see your soul)
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To: Leisler
The Pentagon should look at it like like it was their money, not someone eles's.
33 posted on 01/12/2003 10:54:10 AM PST by Republic of Texas
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To: Leisler
It's always more economical to hit the target and destroy it on the first pass. The F-16 in the Gulf war was "blessed" with an iron bomb sight reminiscent of something from WWII. Basically, they couldn't hit the broadside of the proverbial barn. Ask any TacAir guy how many passes he wants to make. My guess is one is the # one answer. The -16 has since been upgraded but it's still not as effective as the -15 or even some older planes. Sometimes it makes more sense to spend more money and get the job done right the first time( pass ).
34 posted on 01/12/2003 12:08:51 PM PST by Arkie2
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To: Arkie2
"Sometimes it makes more sense to spend more money and get the job done..."

The money's gone, and it isn't coming back and there will never be enough and never has been enough under any circumstances. All warfare is about dealing with shortages. "What if's and wouldn't it be's" are for dreamers. All wars are come as you are affairs. Otherwise we would of moved all the SF units to Colorado and been ready for Afganistan, of course then a war would of sprung up in equatorial Africa....
35 posted on 01/12/2003 1:23:36 PM PST by Leisler
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To: Leisler
Well, you obviously don't like the idea of spending money on the military. Maybe we should just arm all our troops with muskets, give them some molotov coktails and tell them to have at it. I volunteer you to go first though.
36 posted on 01/12/2003 1:47:06 PM PST by Arkie2
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To: ExSoldier
As a Navy man, I never had the bittersweet honor of pounding the ground for Uncle Sam, so maybe my opinion doesn't matter.

But I can say, without any reservation whatsoever, that I have never met a warrior who would assign one iota of blame to you for helping SP/4 Lannon achieve his lifelong dream! Once the orders were cut and he left your charge, your moral and legal responsibility for his well-being ended. Period.

It is good that you have a conscience, but it can be a curse, too. Anyone who would fault an officer for sending warriors to fight has no business giving an opinion, because sending warriors to fight is exactly what officers are supposed to do. It has always been that way, and for good reason. You know it, I know it, and anyone with their head screwed on straight knows it.

So my sincerest and most heartfelt advice is to not let the consequences of any action you took in good faith as an officer haunt you, regardless of what they might be.

And do this confident in the knowledge that there isn't a true warrior alive or dead who would want it any other way, including Specialist Lannon.

37 posted on 01/12/2003 2:12:34 PM PST by Imal (Disciple of Strategery)
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To: Arkie2
The F-16 was designed by Boyd and his gang as a pure air to air fighter. and that's what it would have been until the boys and girls in the 5 sided wonderland started putting hard points on it.

This is an on going problem with the way and type of aircraft we buy. The pentagon has a real hardon for multi-purpose aircraft. F/A 18 comes to mind as an example.

38 posted on 01/12/2003 2:19:43 PM PST by Valin (Good Luck)
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To: Valin
bump
39 posted on 01/12/2003 2:23:14 PM PST by Temple Owl
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To: Arkie2
Whatever.
40 posted on 01/12/2003 2:28:10 PM PST by Leisler
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To: Valin
If Donald Rumsfeld is really listening, I am greatly relieved. Let us pray he is.
41 posted on 01/12/2003 2:35:29 PM PST by yoe
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To: yoe
For what ever it's worth Dick Cheney is a big John Boyd Fan.
During the gulf war he brought Col. Boyd to the pentagon to help plan the ground attack. CentComs plan was High diddle diddle straight up the middle, into the teath of the Iraqi defence.
42 posted on 01/12/2003 2:45:15 PM PST by Valin (Good Luck)
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To: Arkie2
I think there must be more to his story though, just not brought forth in this article.

How right you are! When I first saw this article, I had never heard of the man. So I've been poking around the 'Net and finding out more about Col. Boyd. As I have done so, my estimation of this remarkable American has grown exponentially.

I strongly recommend that you find out more about Col. John R. Boyd. Among other things, you'll discover that his "Energy-Maneuverability Theory" was used not only in the design of the F-16 (which rightly or wrongly you disparage) but also the F-15, which you so rightly praise.

But I am coming to believe that his greatest contributions to America have much less to do with aircraft design or air combat tactics per se than military strategy as a whole.

It has only taken me a few hours of study to conclude with confidence that Colonel John R. Boyd was, beyond all doubt, a military genius of tremendous historical significance.

43 posted on 01/12/2003 6:02:44 PM PST by Imal (Sworn to Uphold and Defend the Constitution of the United States of America)
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To: Imal
Thanks. I thought there must be more. This particular article represents a very poor summary of his talents and achievement if what you say is correct.
44 posted on 01/12/2003 6:08:49 PM PST by Arkie2
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To: Valin
Thank you very much for posting the title article and the additional information.

I am now studying Col. Boyd's work with the delight of discovering something of great value that I had long overlooked.

45 posted on 01/12/2003 6:12:47 PM PST by Imal (New Student of the Late Honorable Colonel John R. Boyd, USAF)
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To: Arkie2
This particular article represents a very poor summary of his talents and achievement if what you say is correct.

I urge you to see for yourself. Just follow some of Valin's links and do a few Google searches. There's a wealth of solid information out there. A good source is Boyd and Military Strategy.

Check out Col. Boyd and his legacy. You will not regret it!

46 posted on 01/12/2003 6:18:44 PM PST by Imal (New Student of the Late Honorable Colonel John R. Boyd, USAF)
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To: Valin
But without his influence, the US would almost certainly be preparing to enter Iraq much as it fled Saigon: a vast, muscle-bound killing machine based on the assumption that big budgets and expensive weapons assured victory.

It doesn't sound to me like he knew all that much about Vietnam. Far from being "muscle-bound", the number of combat troops was remarkably small. From 35,000-50,000, even at the height when we had 500,000 people there. Small stinger with a long tail. The problem was a lack of strategic plan at the political level, little to do with equipment or procurement.

47 posted on 01/12/2003 6:19:34 PM PST by Pelham
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To: B4Ranch
I was deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Colonel John Boyd, USAF (Ret).
How does one begin to pay homage to a warrior like John Boyd?
...(big snip)...
That ancient book of wisdom—Proverbs—sums up John’s contribution to his nation:
" A wise man is strong, and a man of knowledge adds to his strength; for by wise
guidance you will wage your war, and there is victory in a multitude of counselors."*
I, and his Corps of Marines, will miss our counselor terribly.

C.C. Krulak General,
U. S. Marine Corps
Commandant of the Marine Corps



As a civilian (and speaking to civilian posters/lurkers), when a fellow like
Krulak (who as appeared on "Focus On The Family") gives this sort of praise
to a brilliant, foul-mouthed genius...
IMHO, it's a sign the genius far out-shone the profanities.....

The thing that does bother me about all this post-mortem praise for Boyd?
The bad guys will hear about him and start studying his doctrines in earnest...
48 posted on 01/12/2003 6:23:09 PM PST by VOA
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To: Republic of Texas
The quote is attributed to Nathan Bedford Forrest, who said something of that sort. The funny thing is he rarely had "the mostest", but he surely hit hard and fast with what he did have.
49 posted on 01/12/2003 6:24:00 PM PST by Pelham
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To: Arkie2
I've heard the B-2 is able to hit 16 separate targets on one pass.
50 posted on 01/12/2003 6:28:05 PM PST by Pelham
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