A Prediction

Gentle readers, this will be a fairly interesting article since I am actually more interested in being able to, eventually, say, "See! What did I tell you? Isn't this the exact result that I predicted?"

But first, on to a bit of history.

You all remember the absolute fiasco that the Pentagon made of the Bradley Fighting Vehicle, right? A made for TV movie, "Pentagon Wars", was made about it, in fact, although not a lot of the people I spoke to in the following days had bothered to watch it (no blood or breasts involved and a plot that needed to be followed confused them, I suppose).

In any event, the military designed this weapon and, after the vehicle failed every single test that it was put through, the military simply altered the parameters of the tests so that there was absolutely no way that the vehicle could fail. Of course, by engaging in this massive cover-up, the military was dooming tens of thousands of American soldiers to horrible, fiery deaths since the tank's armor plating had to be nearly completely removed in order to make the vehicle even somewhat amphibious, a deletion that would allow nearly any weapon larger than a handgun penetrate the meager shielding. Basically, every single spec that the vehicle was meant to adhere to was ignored rather than allowing a cancellation of the order to expose the military's ineptness and legendary stupidity in its upper ranks. An admission of failure would have made it far more difficult for the involved brass to retire from the military and to then immediately be hired by the very same defense contractors who had so horrible screwed up the Bradley in the first place.

Only one officer had the courage to stand up for the soldiers who would die should the vehicle be produced in mass for the military. This single person probably saved tens of thousands of American lives but, in doing so, had to accept the fact that he would no longer have a career in the military. He made this sacrifice, anyway, but who in America remembers his name?

Well, gentle readers, here is another name to remember - Phillip E. Coyle III. File that away somewhere.

Coyle is the director of operational test and evaluation for the Pentagon and, as such, is responsible for the testing phase of that idiotic "Star Wars" missile defense system (now known as THAAD - Theater High Altitude Area Defense) that began as a joke on a senile old man and has developed a life of its own due the billions and billions of tax dollars that will be sunk into this cesspool before America finally wises up and demands a halt to the entire fiasco.

With only two successful tests of the system after six consecutive and spectacular failures, the Pentagon has foolishly decided to cease any further tests and to proceed to hand over additional billions to Lockheed Martin, Corp., the arm of Corporate America that is sucking up your tax dollars faster than you can earn it.

Coyle has complained that the last two successful tests were "highly scripted" and not nearly as challenging as a situation in which the system would be required to actually hit and disable an incoming missile. The final tests had taken place in an area where the target missile was fired within a very small trajectory which made intercepting it far easier than had the missile been fired from thousands of miles away, a situation in which the target's speed would be far faster and its exact course more difficult to determine. This "shaped and scripted" test showed only that only should the enemy fire their missiles in nearly the exact same way as in the tests would THAAD be truly accurate.

Naturally, the Pentagon's response to the highly sensible advice to conduct further, more realistic tests was this from a Pentagon spokesman who proclaimed that the 25% success rate was "a watershed in the technology history of the United States". Remember, now, that a watershed can also be termed a flood plain, in other words a disaster waiting to happen. In so far as Coyle's intelligent and thoughtful comments, another spokesperson could only utter that they had "no comment on his [Coyle's] statements".

As could be expected, critics of the system have resonated with the same warnings for some time. The Council for a Livable World, an arms control group in Washington, agreed with Coyle's statements in saying, "He's saying things we've been saying for a long time." If the tests "aren't exactly rigged, they are set up not to fail."

Even the LA Times, usually a booster for everything beneficial for Corporate America, urged in a recent editorial, "Congress should make Coyle's concerns it own, and insist that THAAD testing continue, under the most realistic conditions."

So, gentle readers, here is my prediction. Within ten years, at the most, this entire episode will become another sorry story that will be reported sparingly, if at all, except in those very few remaining progressive magazines. It will be investigated by some inane and laughable Congressional committee which will come to the conclusion that the whole episode was unavoidable. Then, a movie of the week will be produced and aired which will be watched by a miniscule portion of the American viewing public. Congress will overreact, as usual, and demand that someone be tagged as the scapegoat for the entire episode which will result in the naming of some low level office clerk who will suddenly become the center of attention for the two or three days that the media will be attentive and who will then be fired or even possible arrested. The real culprits will, of course, spend another year or two in the Pentagon before they retire and, the next day, go to work for the same defense contractors that they were, at one time, supposed to keep honest in dealings with the government. These jobs will pay hundreds of thousands of dollars and these criminals will live the life of luxury, sponging off the American taxpayer.

Did you get all that? I realize that it's a fairly easy prediction to make but it certainly needed to be made in order to, perhaps, wake America up to the constant theft of your taxes by the complete incompetents in and out of government. Maybe America doesn't read Another Perspective but you do and now you can go out and tell your friends what to expect in the next few years. We'll both appear as the geniuses that we are. (1, 2, 3, 4)

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Copyright 9/2/99