It’s tough to accept hard truths, but it’s also deadly and bewildering to continue to accept that the most well financed military in the history of the world has not had a true victory, while being involved in many conflicts, in the last 75 years. Why is this? Where do we begin? The quality of the students and the teaching, for example, at West Point is not what is packaged to the American public and sold as world class. Thus, the leadership corps we have trained hasn’t yielded great generals since WWII. Just as we have seen how America’s political system had a difficult time demonstrating the supposed strengths available through our medical system during a pandemic, spending more on sophisticated weapons systems and generally unaudited trillions in defense expenditures has yielded poor results in conflicts from Korea to Afghanistan. You have to wonder if there were a major conflict whether our military would be exposed as a paper tiger. When we choose to fight, civilian and military leaders pick civil wars and counterinsurgency for which we are little prepared. In the process, we have hardened the resolve of our enemy combatants, made other adversaries stronger in the wake of our warmaking or created unintended consequences with profoundly negative effects. Tim Bakken who teaches civilian law at West Point lays out a case that not only is the military separate from the rest of society, but it has been granted extra Constitutional rights which were never intended by the framers. He explains in this podcast how he won a case against his treatment, as a civilian teacher, and why he’s still on the job today. And then he provides an unflinching critique of our military from his book, ‘The Cost of Loyalty’.