What do the St. Louis Rams and the U.S. Secretary of Defense have in common? Both exemplify the strategy that the best way to win in sports or national defense is to have a potent offense. The football Rams won a Super Bowl with a high-powered offense called “The Greatest Show on Turf.” Gaining ground in huge leaps up the field, they use a potent aerial attack bolstered by a lethal ground assault.
Secretary Rumsfeld also utilizes an aerial assault capability that is unrivaled in the world, with an arsenal of combat aircraft including the F-15 Strike Eagle, the F-16 Fighting Falcon, the B-1, B-2, A-10, and other aircraft for jamming, surveillance, refueling, and tasks related to true air superiority, which is a understood to be a given in modern U.S. combat. But the ground forces are not far behind, with M-1 tanks, armored personnel carriers, Humvees, self-propelled computerized artillery and soldier communicating with computers and satellite communications.
The Rams won one Super Bowl, but somehow failed to continue the legacy of a predicted sports dynasty. Will America’s military do better than the Rams? Certainly the U.S. military has an immense budgetary advantage over all other nations of the world; in fact, the U.S. military outspends practically all of its competitors combined. Whereas the Rams have lost players for lack of resources to keep the high paid team together in view of modern sports financial realities.
President Bush had made it clear that all U.S. military efforts are done for national defense. But, like St. Louis Rams coach Mike Martz, the President believes the best defense is a great, potent offense. “To defend our nation, we must launch pre-emptive assaults on our enemies”, said Mr. Bush. And he continued, “We want to defend our nation well beyond our own borders”, and “We must take our defense straight to the enemy”.
It remains unclear whether this Bush military doctrine will become universal in the world, with other nations using defense to prevent offensive attacks by their enemies. Bush and his policy advisors are working to explain to the Pakistani president why Pakistan should not launch a defensive attack on India, why North Korea should not launch a defensive nuclear strike on South Korea, and why China should not launch a defensive invasion of Taiwan. And these nations and others are openly questioning why defensive aggression is appropriate for the U.S. and not for themselves in dealing with potential enemies.
While working to limit defensive warfare by other nations, the U.S. continues building up its defensive arsenal of Tomahawk missiles and precision bombs. Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld is said to have a favorite saying: “Defend, defend, defend, don’t let your enemies mend; then defend, defend again; if you do, you’re going to win.”
Secretary Rumsfeld is also said to be working on a new aspect of the Strategic Missile Defense System. Instead of waiting for U.S. enemies to launch ballistic missiles and try to shoot them out of the sky, Rumsfeld envisions using sophisticated computer technology to predict which nations might launch attacks and when. Then, in defensive pre-launch protection modes, the U.S. will launch its own missiles and destroy the enemy lauch sites in pre-emptive, defensive assaults. “What if the computers get it wrong”, asked on U.S. politician. Rumsfeld, with the tips of his ears aglow with righteous indignation, replied “If we make a defensive error, our enemies will just have to live with it, then, won’t they?”
President Bush assured his questioners in the Public Press that the real goal of this defensive posture is to make for a safer world. The Press took him at his word.
The writer is a member of several falconry and ornithological clubs and organizations. He contributed above article to Media Monitors Network (MMN) from California, USA.