Archive for the ‘Admiral’ Category

U.S. shows that soft power can work in a hard war

November 12, 2008

Soft power is about to come to U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM) – America’s military command in the Middle East – in a big way.

Gary Schaub Jr.
The Washington Times

Associated Press U.S. Central Command's Gen. David Petraeus speaks during an interview last week at a U.S. military base in Bagram, north of Kabul, Afghanistan.

Above: Central Command’s Gen. David Petraeus speaks during an interview last week at a U.S. military base.  Photo by the Associated Press

By winning friends and influencing people, the idea goes, the United States can defuse potential conflicts before they start and achieve America’s goals without firing a shot.

Soft power has currency in a cash-strapped U.S. military. The commander of SOUTHCOM, America’s military command for Central and South America, has undertaken many such missions. Adm. James Stavridis has sent Navy hospital ships to countries in that area to provide free medical care, train local doctors and build schools.

The new command in Africa – AFRICOM – has announced that such soft-power missions will be its top priority.

But these are relative backwaters. CENTCOM, where the United States is engaged in two wars and is prepared for others, is where soft power will have its largest impact.

Army Gen. David Petraeus, who is best known as the general behind the successful “surge” strategy in Iraq, has just taken over CENTCOM, and he is bringing soft power to bear.

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Pakistan’s al Qaeda alarms Pentagon

January 12, 2008

By Sara A. Carter
The Washington Times 
January 12, 2008

The Pentagon is “extremely concerned” about the emergence of al Qaeda in Pakistan, Adm. Michael Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said yesterday.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen

Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Michael Mullen (Associated Press)

“There are concerns now about how much [al Qaeda] turned inward, literally, inside Pakistan, as well as the kind of planning, training, financing and support that the worldwide effort is,” Adm. Mullen said.

“So, [the Pentagon is] extremely, extremely concerned about that, and I think continued pressure there will have to be brought,” he said.

Adm. Mullen added, however, that “Pakistan is a sovereign country and certainly it’s really up to … President Musharraf and certainly his advisers and his military to address that problem directly.”

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