The Menace of the Military Mind

Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Chris Hedges, who served as a foreign correspondent for nearly two decades in Central America, the Middle East, Africa and the Balkans, has some searing observations on The Menace of the Military Mind. Hedges has seen first-hand the reality of war and those in the top leadership cadre of its command  structure:

Most institutions have a propensity to promote mediocrities, those whose primary strengths are knowing where power lies, being subservient and obsequious to the centers of power and never letting morality get in the way of one’s career. The military is the worst in this respect. In the military, whether at the Parris Island boot camp or West Point, you are trained not to think but to obey. What amazes me about the military is how stupid and bovine its senior officers are. Those with brains and the willingness to use them seem to be pushed out long before they can rise to the senior-officer ranks. The many Army generals I met over the years not only lacked the most rudimentary creativity and independence of thought but nearly always saw the press, as well as an informed public, as impinging on their love of order, regimentation, unwavering obedience to authority and single-minded use of force to solve complex problems.


6:09 pm on February 3, 2014