- Here on the fringe of the Arabian Desert’s forbidding Empty Quarter, this aerial armada, mobilized to patrol the skies of southern Iraq, is emblematic of the U.S. military — which now stands astride the globe more dominant than any armed force since the legions of the Roman Empire.
Four times over the past 12 years — in Iraq, in Haiti, in Yugoslavia and in Afghanistan — U.S. forces have dispatched enemy forces in a matter of weeks. Today, on the eve of a possible new war against Iraq, those forces are exponentially more lethal, and their commanders, who have known little but victory over their careers, are confident almost to the point of cockiness.
“At no time in the history of modern warfare has a force been as well-trained, well-equipped and highly motivated as our Air Force is today,” Gen. John P. Jumper, the Air Force chief of staff, said last month. Indeed, one of the Air Force’s slogans is “Global Reach, Global Power.” [Washington Post]
The more you have, the less you need to show it off. The more confident you are, the less arrogant you need to be. Quiet strength is preferable to swagger. This ties in to my thoughts on the inappropriateness of triumphalist poetry. I’m felling very wu-wei right now.