Bill Lind on the Congressional Military Reform Caucus

Jul 14, 2016

Bill Lind, former national security advisor to Senator Gary Hart (D-CO), discusses the once-formidable bipartisan Congressional Military Reform Caucus, its lasting impact and reforms, and why it didn’t last in Washington. He and LtCol Greg Thiele USMC recently published the 4th Generation Warfare Handbook, a guide for U.S. forces for confronting an enemy whose primary loyalty is not to an officially recognized government.

“The decline of the Caucus began after Senator Hart and Congressman Whitehurst turned the leadership over to other members of Congress. They decided we’re not going to talk about things like warfare anymore, we’re going to get back to what Congress normally does, we’re going to look at the problem of wasting money. Well, this is efficiency. We were looking not just for efficiency but for effectiveness. The dropping of the effectiveness side of the equation to focus purely on efficiency played to the Defense Department because it knows how to play those games very well. It did not know what to do when it had members of Congress asking about military effectiveness. It was panicked, it was coming unglued. But it knows how to do the usual tricks with numbers to make it look like they’re proving their efficiency.”