NOTES ON GENERAL COLIN POWELL

Monday 11 December 2017 at 4:59 pm.

Notes on Colin Powell:

 

David Rubenstein, founder of the Carlyle Group ($174b in assets), hosts the Sunday morning TV show:  Peer to Peer Interview on Bloomberg News. He interviewed Colin Powell on 12/3/2017.

 

It was a clarifying interview, since Powell is usually misquoted, taken out of context.  and certainly mischaracterized by the fake news media.  My take-aways: 


  1. Powell is a New Yorker, right out of Harlem [not too far from Ascension Parish]
  2. Powell is glib, with a good sense of humor; and likes to dabble in Yiddish.
  3. Graduates CCNY, Geology, “c” student; ROTC
  4. He speaks in very simple terms, and very clearly
  5. He is humble
  6. As per WMD: everyone, both democrats and republicans, bought into the CIA assessment that Saddam had WMD
  7. As per the Invasion:  it was the correct decision
  8. As per the execution: disastrous. Two major mistakes:  1. Not to include the Baathists in planning the new government; 2. Failure to use adequate US Army ground forces.
  9. In hindsight, was the invasion a mistake? Iraq is a democracy and it is working.  If it continues in this direction, then the long-term view will favor the invasion.
  10. He did not run for President because he is a moderate Republican, and the conservatives were against him.
  11. He agreed to serve as Secretary of State because he liked GHBush who was a moderate.
  12. He did not invent the Powell Doctrine, and he does not ascribe to Overwhelming-Force, but rather Decisive-Force. 


Powell’s 13 Rules of Leadership

Quoting a famous statement by POTUS Lincoln, Powell said the job of a Brig General “is to take care of the horses”.

  1. It ain't as bad as you think.
  2. Get mad, then get over it.
  3. Avoid having your ego so close to your position that when your position falls, your ego goes with it.
  4. It can be done.
  5. Be careful what you choose. You may get it.
  6. Don't let adverse facts stand in the way of a good decision.
  7. You can't make someone else's choices.
  8. Check small things.
  9. Share credit.
  10. Remain calm. Be kind.
  11. Have a vision.
  12. Don't take counsel of your fears or naysayers.
  13. Perpetual optimism is a force multiplier.

The "Powell Doctrine" is a journalist-created term, named after General Colin Powell in the run-up to the 1990–91 Gulf War. It is based in large part on the Weinberger Doctrine, devised by Caspar Weinberger, former Secretary of Defense and Powell's former boss. The doctrine emphasizes U.S. national security interests, overwhelming strike capabilities with an emphasis on ground forces, and widespread public support.[1]

The Powell Doctrine states that a list of questions all have to be answered affirmatively before military action is taken by the United States:

  1. Is a vital national security interest threatened?
  2. Do we have a clear attainable objective?
  3. Have the risks and costs been fully and frankly analyzed?
  4. Have all other non-violent policy means been fully exhausted?
  5. Is there a plausible exit strategy to avoid endless entanglement?
  6. Have the consequences of our action been fully considered?
  7. Is the action supported by the American people?
  8. Do we have genuine broad international support?[2]

It denotes the exhausting of all "political, economic, and diplomatic means", which, if all futile, is the only condition that nation should resort to military force. Powell has so asserted that when a nation is engaging in war, every resource and tool should be used to achieve decisive force [not overwhelming]  against the enemy, minimizing casualties and ending the conflict quickly by forcing the weaker force to capitulate.[3]

Analysis and commentary:  The Powell Doctrine has been reported as emerging legacy from Korean and Vietnam and the "Never Again vs. Limited War" policy debates (either win or don't start versus value of limited war)[4] and Weinberger's Six Tests described in his 1984 speech "The Uses of Military Power".[5] It has been used to compare the Vietnam War, the Gulf War, and the Iraq War.[6]

See also

References

  1.  
  1. ·  DWSUF (September 8, 2007). "Is Iraq like Vietnam? Lessons learned". Daily Kos. Retrieved April 19, 2015.

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