It seems that we now learn every week about new problematic conditions in the US Armed Forces and especially its officer corps: cheating during exams, sexual harassment on an unprecedented scale, revelations of toxic leaders, Generals who want to garnish their aides at all costs, mediocre faculty and harsh commanders at military schools, corruption in arms deals and supply procurement, and other ethical failures of officers and especially senior officers who abuse their privileges in myriad ways.
When an encyclopedia of ethical failures can be created the situation is truly alarming. The lens has been focusing especially on Generals and many have asked correctly how an officer who has displayed such unacceptable behavior could ever have become a General in the first place. Why was he/she not sorted out as a Captain at the latest?
Obviously, the whole system needs an overhaul, but no one seems to want to make the hard choices. The latter, however, is a true trait of outstanding leaders.
Like 90% of all problems in an army this comes down to leadership, education, and selection. The knowledge of History really aids decision making, if people would only care to study it. As I have always told all my students in all my classes, in some of the first lectures: only fools learn by their own mistakes, smart people learn by the mistakes of others. (end of excerpt)
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