I suppose it’s still possible that some people haven’t heard this about me, because God knows I repeat it often enough: when I was five years old, I saw the USAF Thunderbirds flying F-100 Super Sabers at Kindley Air Force Base in Bermuda; from that moment I spent twelve years preparing to enter the United States Air Force Academy, and have been in love with flying ever since.
During the years between that first overhead flash of silver, red, white and blue, and this exact moment – right now – I have wanted to be a fighter pilot. I studied military history, weapon systems, strategy and tactics, and learned by heart every piece of hardware in our inventory, and the Soviet inventory, as well.
Not long ago, the man who made my career possible – Glenn Reynolds, aka The Blogfather, akaInstapundit, wrote a simple, throw-away sentence that went through my forehead like a diamond bullet. It fundamentally changed the way I see things, and like a diamond bullet through the forehead – it hurt.
Glenn was talking about the pummeling the GOP was taking in the polls during and after the latest “government shutdown,” which was in fact caused by President Obama but which was reported in the press – universally – as being the fault of the Republicans. He wrote:
The GOP has to deal with the problem posed by a hostile media. It’s like trying to mount an invasion when the enemy has air superiority.
Up until that instant, I thought I had a good sense of the advantage that the Democrats, and their control-freak ilk, had over those of us that value responsibility, freedom and being left alone. I have done innumerable commentaries on press bias; I’ve even done some math with Electoral College voting showing what a difference a 15 percentage point spin does to Presidential campaigns.
So I thought I had a handle on the political consequences of this kind of media headwind. But I don’t naturally think like a politician. I think like a fighter pilot.
There are scores, if not hundreds of variables at play on the modern battlefield – but there is only one essential element: only one. You can still lose if you have it, but without it you simply do not have a chance. And that one variable is not just air superiority – the ability to fight and win in the skies over the battlespace – but air supremacy: you must own the skies.
With air supremacy comes reconnaissance. With air supremacy comes air strikes. With air supremacy comes the ability to locate, and destroy, enemy armor, ships, convoys and troop concentrations. Air supremacy is a force multiplier: AWACS command and control aircraft can vector inbound strike packages fluidly and flexibly, hitting targets of opportunity as they appear.
Without air supremacy, you formerly could not move in daylight. Now, you cannot move at all. Without air supremacy your troop concentrations and movements are known to the enemy, while you remain blind to theirs. Without air supremacy you cannot protect assets. Any concentration of forces large enough to do serious damage is detected, located, identified and destroyed before it can get into effective range.
This is true over land and it is true at sea. If you are fighting a conventional war and you do not own the skies, you are going to lose.
And so with that one sentence, Glenn Reynolds made clear to me not only how serious our problem is: he also made it clear to me what the solution has to be, and it is a solution that, frankly, makes me a little ill.
I meant what I said. The logic and evidence for it is overwhelming: If you are fighting a conventional war and you do not own the skies, you are going to lose.
So: logically, if this statement is true, and you do not like the conclusion, then you have to change one of the operators. And that looks like this:
If you do not have air supremacy, and you don’t want to lose, then you must not fight a conventional war.
I have some thoughts on how to do that: how to fight a non-conventional political war using guerrilla messaging techniques. That’s going to be the subject of my next Firewall, which I’ll shoot next week.
Until then, let me show you how this would work on a target working against the Liberal messaging machine and their unchallengeable (for now) air supremacy.
The tagline for my website has been SMART CONSERVATIVE THINKING. I chose it because it was bold, it was defiant, and it was assertive: it was running to the top of a hill and planting a flag for people to rally around.
Now, with my new vision, I see that it is all those things: a conventional unit on an open plain. That flag, and that hill, will be turned into searing napalm the instant is starts to become enough of a threat to warrant an airstrike.
That message – that smart, common-sense, responsible conservative message – cannot change. That message is the entire reason we are fighting this battle in the first place. But I have to stop thinking like an American – which is not only hard but extremely distasteful for me – and start thinking like the Viet Cong. I have to start thinking the way the Left itself started thinking forty years ago. They didn’t come out and say GET YOUR COMMUNISM HERE. They turned students into professors who then turned out more students. That’s how we have to think: the Long March.
So, the first person who should listen to this idea of mine, is me. Rather than a banner which alienates anyone who is not already a conservative before they hear so much as a syllable of reason, I will use one that recruits, rather than repels those people who know the system is broken and don’t like where this country is headed. I can’t control the fact that the word conservative has been smeared; but it has. There’s a laser target designator on that word, and it lights it up to a constellation of attack aircraft flying high overhead. So we will fade into the undergrowth, and deploy some serious camouflage.
Starting on Monday, October 28th, 2013 the tag line at BillWhittle.com will no longer be SMART CONSERVATIVE THINKING. Starting on Monday we will become THE COMMON-SENSE RESISTANCE.
And it was only after coming to grips that what we have in our hands are not F-22’s but rather bamboo spears, that I realized there was a person in history who was faced with a similar problem, and it wasn’t Mao, and it wasn’t Ho Chi Minh.
It was this guy: George Washington image
(If you would like to help start distributing bamboo spears to General Washington’s troops, please clickHERE and help us ammo-up. With your help, we’ll get stealth fighters out of this someday; until then it’s one step at a time.)