What If America Had ‘Eliminated’ Saddam Hussein?
In the early days of the air campaign of the 1991 Gulf War, the United States undertook a concerted effort to track and strike Iraqi president Saddam Hussein. The effort was predicated on the belief that eliminating Saddam Hussein would have two effects — it would throw the Iraqi... Read more
The Most Horrific War of All Time — Russia Versus Germany
The war between Germany and the Soviet Union officially began in late June 1941, although the threat of conflict had loomed since the early 1930s. Germany and the USSR launched a joint war against Poland in September of 1939, which the Soviets followed up with invasions of Finland, Romania... Read more
Yes, America’s Military Supremacy Is Fading
Last week, U.S. Air Force Gen. Frank Gorenc argued that the air power advantage the United States has enjoyed over Russia and China is shrinking. This warning comes as part of a deluge of commentary on the waning international position of the United States. The U.S. military, it would seem,... Read more
The Arms Industry Is Ripe Pickings for Hackers
Israel’s Iron Dome rocket-defense system may not work, but China would like to know for itself. Recent reports indicate that Chinese hackers have attempted to steal data on the Iron Dome from Israeli contractor Rafael. Iron Dome is depicted above in the photo by the AP’s Tsafrir Abayov. This... Read more
Here’s One Way to Totally Reorganize the U.S. Military
My new book Grounded isn’t the first proposal aimed at totally doing away with the U.S. Air Force. In 1982 John Byron—then a Navy commander and submarine skipper—argued that the United States should reorganize its military around three branches, eliminating the Air Force and creating a new Strategic Deterrent... Read more
The U.S. Navy’s Biggest Base Is Sinking
What if the U.S. Navy’s main base in Norfolk, Virginia sinks? It could happen. And it’s not an isolated problem, as climate change alters coastlines all over the world. A report from the American Security Project identifies Naval Station Norfolk as America’s fifth most endangered military base. The report... Read more
On Second Thought, Let’s Not Bomb Iraq
Why not just go all the way? Why not let the terrorists, such as they are, take over Iraq—and then bomb the Hell out of it? Franz Gayl’s argument has the virtues of clarity and simplicity and counts on air power—America’s “asymmetric advantage”—to keep the war far from our... Read more
Below Ground, Under an Imposing Artifice, a Great Museum of a Terrible War
The National World War I Museum in Kansas City, Missouri, is gearing up for the centennial of the Great War. I just visited. You should, too. It’s a good experience despite the institution’s flaws. In preparation for the first months of the centennial, the museum has opened the new... Read more
Disband the Royal Air Force!
Could the campaign to eliminate independent air forces succeed with the world’s first independent air force? Some air-power critics associated with the Royal Navy are lobbying the U.K. government to disband the Royal Air Force. “Air power as a joint concept cannot, and is not, best delivered from an... Read more
This Anime Is an Aviation History Masterpiece
Last year, one of Japan’s most acclaimed directors released a film that stood in stark contrast to nearly all of his previous works. Hayao Miyazaki’s The Wind Rises is a loose biography of Jiro Horikoshi, the man behind the famous A6M Zero fighter plane. Miyazaki’s is better known for... Read more
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