Military Review English Edition September-October 2014 - Page 95

WARRIOR SPIRIT ethos of being a warrior is disappearing—unit esprit built around ‘bonding’ between warriors is now disparaged as an irrelevant concept and one that only serves to rationalize politically incorrect behavior and policies.”18 Abandoning the warrior ethos in order to conform to societal expectations is not a major factor in a post-Afghanistan Army, but a return to bureaucratic routine with a reversion to reliance on easily measurable statistics as indicators of leadership may have the same effect. Managerial Routine and Risk Aversion Prior to combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, much of Army life consisted of highly routine tasks and mundane responsibilities. Unit staffs focused their energy on creating the quarterly training brief by building U.S. Army National Guard photo by Sgt. James D. Sims, 139th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment Baucom concluded that these factors included an overemphasis on management and a fascination with technology which produced an imbalance between manager and hero brought about detrimental effects on the warrior spirit. Similarly, at the conclusion of the Gulf War many senior military leaders questioned the presence of heroic leadership and the warrior spirit that it produces. Based on external social pressures the military strayed from accepting the warrior as a special and unique individual, focusing more on the standardization of all military forces who were heavily reliant on technological solutions to win wars. Retired Army Gen. William C. Moore showed concern about a departure from the warrior spirit as reflected by a softening of military training standards and prevailing attitudes regarding a widening separation of military and societal values. He wrote, “The National Guard Soldiers from Illinois and surrounding states lift a log during a readiness assessment with 2nd Battalion, 20th Special Forces Group (Airborne) based in Chicago at Marseilles Training Center, 12 April 2014. The weekend assessment is designed to test the physical and mental toughness of the potential Special Forces operators. MILITARY REVIEW  September-October 2014 93