http://www.theamericanspectator.com/dsp_article.asp?art_id=9778 Rumsfeld and the Generals By Lawrence Henry Published 5/5/2006 12:08:26 AM EXCERPT If the Army didn't want to do something--as in the Balkans in the 1990s--it would simply overstate the force requirements: "The answer is 350,000 soldiers. What's the question?" NOW ENTER A NEW PRESIDENT, a new party, and suddenly 9/11. This President Bush was not content to consult the biggest Rolodex in foreign policy (his Dad's). He wanted to get something done fast, and he did it. Within a month, two dozen or so Special Forces ops, dropped into Northern Afghanistan, had rounded up tribal help and set the Taliban on the run. The fall of Kandahar followed within about a month. When the big battalions showed up under Gen. Tommy Franks, GIs began to die -- not before. And it was big Army thinking that let bin Laden escape -- if indeed that's what happened. The early stunning triumph in the north, still unappreciated by the public, didn't escape the generals for significance. Of those two dozen Special Forces operators, most were sergeants, with a captain or two and a few warrant officers sprinkled in. They exploited "joint" capabilities to the max, calling in laser-targeted bombs delivered by the nearest available fast-mover, never mind the branch of service. The whole operation stood as a rebuke to division-level thinking -- and, in fact, to the Powell Doctrine. What was worse, from the generals' point of view, the President and the SecDef liked this quick, slashing approach to war and wanted to do more of it -- wanted, in fact, to reorganize the entire military along such lines. The Cold War had seen the Air Force predominate in the Pentagon turf wars, with the fanciest weapons systems and ultimate defense against -- and delivery of -- nuclear weapons. (Can't leave out the Trident sub; the Navy had its hooks in, too.) Now, everything would be turned topsy-turvy, with those hard-to-control Spec Ops types and the Marine Corps, with its self-contained Expeditionary Units, at the center of the show. The President even brought back a retired Spec Ops general, Peter Schoomaker, to replace the looks-like-America Eric Shinseki as U.S. Army Chief of Staff. Secretary Rumsfeld cancelled the appropriation for the humongous Crusader artillery system. The World War II generation would have understood the pique, as I say. The generals got their rice bowls broken. That rattling noise, under all the whining, was the jingle of hundreds of generals' prospective shoulderboard stars washing out the Pentagon sewers and down the Potomac . So never mind the apparent policy differences or the complaints that Secretary Rumsfeld is "arrogant" and "doesn't listen." Those are just pretexts for making a political move, hardly unexpected from the politicized Army that survived the Clinton administration.