DOD Marines

A retired Marine 3-star general explains ‘critical military theory’

This excellent article linked below appeared on the Task & Purpose website. It is written by Marine Lt Gen Greg Newbold (Ret) and provides nine tenets of what he calls Critical Military Theory. It’s an antidote to what he calls “warfare dementia” that has developed within our senior politicians and military leaders, who are either confused or in denial about the purpose and makeup of our fighting forces.

Each tenet is accompanied by a brief explanation, along with a supporting quote from a historical figure, which he calls “relevant wisdom.” The purpose of this essay is, “to explain the fundamental tenets of a military that will either deter potential enemies or decisively win the nation’s wars, thereby preserving our way of life.”

Including this one:

6. A military force’s greatest strengths are cohesion and discipline. Individuality or group identity is corrosive and a centrifugal force. Indeed, the military wears uniforms because uniformity is essential. The tenets of Critical Race Theory – a cross-disciplinary intellectual and social movement that seeks to examine the intersection of race and law in the United States, but which has the unfortunate effect of dividing people along racial lines – undermine our military’s unity and diminish our warfighting capabilities.

Recruit training teaches close order drill and the manual of arms (drill with weapons) not because they still have relevance to maneuvers on the field of battle, but because they instill a sense of how conformity creates efficiency and superior group results. Upon a firm foundation of cohesion, imaginative leaders can spark initiative and innovation. But when we highlight differences or group identity, we undermine cohesion and morale. Failure results.

  • Relevant Wisdom: “Four brave men who do not know each other will not dare to attack a lion. Four less brave, but knowing each other well, sure of their reliability and consequently of mutual aid, will attack resolutely. There is the science of the organization of armies in a nutshell.” Colonel Ardant du Picq.

Read the article


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