US journos never disappoint. No, really, certain Nathan Hodge and Julian Barnes of Wall Street Journal rag fame just made my morning. Make no mistake, there always was a degree of melodrama in US when dealing with war, the same as lack of any grasp of issues of scales and proportions. Enough to remember grossly exaggerated, if not completely false, dichotomies, such as contrived "rivalry", which never materialized, of Patton and Rommel--both being merely episodes, and by far not the most important ones, of WW II. Certainly not even close to the scale of Valilevsky, Rokossovsky, Manstein or Guderian. Not even in the same universe. Yet, there it was--a Hollywood version of something that even never existed. Today, above mentioned WSJ journos, while repeating this idiotic Patton-Rommel cliche, came up with another cringe-worthy melodramatic, totally contrived BS which they called:
Really? No, I really mean, really? How trivial and shallow one has to be when coming up, for starters, with such sappy baloney as "nemesis". Nemesis, if to follow popular Greek Mythology derived definition, is something a person can not overcome. The immediate question is, then, this--in what sense Russia's Chief Of General Staff Army General Valery Gerasimov is a "long-time nemesis" for US National Security Adviser General McMaster? How, in what inflamed fantasy, can Valery Gerasimov, who, throughout his career, commanded both 58th Army and then what would amount to several Army Groups, before becoming Chief Of General Staff, be a nemesis to a man, with all due respect to McMaster, whose "accomplishments" involve such things as, even if viewed briefly from Wiki:
In August 2008, McMaster assumed duties as Director, Concept Development and Experimentation (later renamed Concept Development and Learning), in the Army Capabilities Integration Center (ARCIC) at Fort Monroe, Virginia, part of U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command. In this position McMaster was involved in preparing doctrine to guide the Army over the next ten to twenty years.
Apart from obvious gross mismatch in rank, command, responsibilities and accomplishments--Gerasimov's level is a level of the Chairman Of The Joint Chiefs Of Staff--one is forced to ask the question: and what are those "military thinking" accomplishments of McMaster per him being a Director, Concept Development and Experimentation? Almost ten years passed from the moment of McMaster's involvement with US doctrine. And what are the results? Results are in the open, for everyone to see and they are not pretty. But then, another question comes: does Gerasimov even know that he is McMaster's "nemesis"? Did troops commanded or guided through operational plans developed by Gerasimov and McMaster ever meet on a battlefield? Never heard of that. But then again, Gerasimov as Chief Of General Staff has at his disposal, a world-class and with pedigree to back it up, GOU (Главное Оперативное Управление--Main Operational Directorate) which for the last 15 years has shown a rather impressive track record. One is literally forced, then, to inevitably "compare the records" purely on merit and without preposterous references to "nemesis".
I will abstain from elaborating on the records' comparison, albeit I did it not for once, such as here, but let Patrick Armstrong speak on that:
Spectacularly successful at raining death and destruction in the first few weeks, something goes wrong later. Obviously there is something wrong in the way the USA fights wars.
I can explain why USA loses its wars and what is a unbridgeable, irreconcilable difference not only between Gerasimov and McMaster but between Russian and American military thinking: US Armed Forces never fought in real defense of their homeland in the last two hundred plus years. Never. Russia does it for millennium. All US warfare is expeditionary in nature with US proper remaining completely oblivious to the realities of the wars it unleashes elsewhere. That it is the reason American soldier inevitably loses an interest and stake in fighting American wars since, in the end, his (her) family at home, his property, everything he (she) loves and treasures remains untouched by brutality of the warfare and other things which come in this terrifying package. Russia and her soldiers and generals (as well as the nation as a whole) think in a completely different plane, because know, on a genetic level, what war can bring to their homeland.
So, when these two WSJ hacks write this:
Their dynamic sheds light on the evolving military competition between the world’s two biggest nuclear powers at a time of rising diplomatic tension. Moscow has narrowed a yawning gap in the quality of its conventional forces, but the U.S. remains far more powerful in that category. It is this imbalance that has shaped the strategic thinking of the two generals. It’s American force and resolve against Russian cunning and diversion.
They expose not only their utter ignorance on a whole spectrum of military issues (those two certainly never heard of Russia's Military Doctrine--explicitly defensive), they parade their incompetence by mentioning some non-existent dynamic between a man, who leads institution (Russia's General Staff) which goes back to the times of Peter The Great and has in its record victories over Charles XII, Napoleon, Wehrmacht, recently, over terrorist armies in Syria, and a guy whose "accomplishments", apart from being popular within US Army, are rather... not impressive. So, what dynamic? I can tell you what--none. As per studying somebody's combat experience--that is what military professional do, everywhere since earliest times and in this Sun Tzu's department of "Know Thyself And Know Thy Enemy" US "strategists" fail miserably time after time since the times of Korean War. McMaster will not be an exception, he will fail too. The only task now is to make sure that while failing, this will not bring the world to the edge of confrontation which will have catastrophic consequences. Gerasimov and McMaster, apart from not having any "dynamic" as WSJ hacks claim, are in different universes military strategic thinking and experience wise and both are not only not comparable, they are irreconcilable and will remain so. As per imbalance, currently no single or combination of Armed Forces, that includes US Army, can defeat Russia conventionally in her immediate geographic vicinity. I hope McMaster is smart enough not to try testing this because it will not be Gerasimov who may then become his "nemesis" in reality but Russia as a whole herself, and her military track record speaks volumes. As per WSJ journos--nice try, double plus LOL, morons.