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The Washington Times

Executive Branch Still On Slippery War Footing: Political Pandering To Minority Groups

By J. Michael Waller

February 4, 2002
Copyright © 2002
The Washington Times. All Rights Reserved.
Copyright © 2002
ProQuest Information and Learning. All Rights Reserved.

All the money in the world won't win the war until the United States gets on the "war footing" that the White House announced a week after the Sept. 11 attacks. Behind the facade of unity, the executive branch is divided about how to wage the war against terrorism.

  • The Pentagon's cumbersome procurement processes have not been waived to speed vital military equipment to key allies abroad.
  • Bureaucratic sluggishness continues to slow the appointments of key national-security posts, with Clinton holdovers remaining on the job and causing divisions.
  • Political pandering to minority groups prompted the Navy secretary to reject a request from the chief of naval operations and the commandant of the Marine Corps to allow an aircraft-carrier battle group to train on the Puerto Rican island of Vieques before combat duty in the Arabian Sea.
  • As military strategists devised plans on how to engage an armed Iraqi opposition group in a future attack on the Saddam Hussein regime, the State Department shut off the funds to that very force.
  • Senior military officers advanced for their ability to meet the standards of the politically correct Clinton administration have continued to behave as if small numbers of active-duty war fighters and mobilized reserves will be sufficient to get the job done.

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