Skip to content
Politics & Current Affairs

Gates Schools the Military

In a series of farewell speeches that recall President Eisenhower’s warnings against the military-industrial complex, Defense Secretary Gates says the military needs sizable reform.

A new and leaner fighting force—one capable of handling asymmetrical conflict—is the next and necessary phase in America’s military progress, says Defense Secretary Robert Gates. Reform should discourage us from fighting land wars: “The Pentagon has to learn the lessons of Iraq and Afghanistan, and incorporate those lessons into its culture. Gates has spent much of these past two years force-feeding these lessons to the Pentagon bureaucracy, and his big worry is that—once he’s gone and, especially, once the current wars wind down and thus the urgency dissipates—things will revert to form.”

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates’s remarks last week were in keeping with his ongoing effort to restructure the armed forces and create what he has called a “truly 21st century” military. 

Up Next
After the euphoria of Tunisia and Egypt, Qaddafi’s defiance provides a reminder that revolutions are often bloody and uncertain for their duration, says Wendell Steavenson.