Thoughts on: The Wounded Giant by Michael O’Hanlon

February 5, 2012

About:
The Wounded Giant: America’s Armed Forces in an Age of Austerity  by Michael O’Hanlon is a non-fiction eBook in which the author lays out his ideas for military budget cuts. The book is available only in as an eBook by The Penguin Press.

  • 256 pages
  • Publisher: The Penguin Press HC
  • ISBN: 1594205035

My rating for The Wounded Giant – 4

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Thoughts:
In The Wounded Giant: America’s Armed Forces in an Age of Austerity, Michael O’Hanlon argues the defense budget cuts outlined by Congress could be catastrophic. The author takes a deep breath and tries to analyze the cuts and bring forward his own solutions while still maintaining national security priorities.

From nuclear missile programs, to the U.S. Navy, offshore bases and more Mr. O’Hanlon takes a sober look, without political baggage at where we should, and could, cut. To my surprise, this is a very readable book which makes some good sense out of a very cumbersome subject.

The book opens up a discussion on reasoned proposals to plan for future conflicts based on hard intelligence data. Mr. O’Hanlon also makes his analysis in clear sentences which is easy to the non-number-crunching reader to follow.

While I’m sure many will disagree with Mr. O’Hanlon analysis (for example that of China as a “friendly rival”), the book opens up the debate and does not sink into populist declarations such as those we are used to from Washington these days.

Books in sim­i­lar vein:
The Most Dan­ger­ous Place: Pakistan’s Law­less Fron­tier by Imtiaz Gul
On China by Henry Kissinger

So tell me, is it the level of debate that counts?

Synopsis:
Michael O’Hanlon asks the reader to think about national security and American’s role in the world. The question, the author argues, is not how much we want to give the military, but how much money we need to give it.

Giving the reader several credible scenarios (What if China turned militant?) he comes to some challenging conclusions which makes the reader think. There are no magic pills r solutions, but hard choices which we must make.

Great price on this book in paper or elec­tronic for­mat
through the Man of la Book Affil­i­ate Account

TLC Book Tour for The Wounded Giant:

Sunday, February 5th: Man of La Book
Monday, February 6th: The Future American
Tuesday, February 7th: Whiskey Fire
Wednesday, February 8th: Padre Steve
Thursday, February 9th: Noisy Room
Friday, February 10th: Marathon Pundit
Monday, February 13th: Strategist’s Personal Library
Tuesday, February 14th: Left in Alabama
Wednesday, February 15th: In Homeland Security
Monday, February 20th: The Moderate Voice

Zohar – Man of la Book
Dis­claimer: I got this book for free as part of the TLC Book Tour pro­mo­tion.

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4 Comments

  • C.E. Hart February 5, 2012 at 8:38 pm

    Oh–don’t get me started. I’m so passionate about our military, and feel they’ve been short-changed for too long. These honorable men and women give their all for this country, and we owe them so much. We need to build them up, keep them strong. It takes money. More than our current leaders are willing to give. The military isn’t an appendage of our country, they are the spine. Strengthen the core, and the rest will become more steady.

    Okay, I’m stepping off my soap box. 😉

  • teressa oliver February 8, 2012 at 8:30 pm

    I am with you on the idea of China as being a friendly rival. I am a Navy veteran though and would be interested in reading what he thinks about the military cuts and what makes him an expert on it. No offense, but I don’t think anyone who has never worn a uniform can really understand how the military operates.

    • Zohar - Man of la Book February 8, 2012 at 11:07 pm

      I wore a uniform and I still have a difficult time to understand how the military works on a level about, let’s say, a company.

      The author is a senior fel­low in For­eign Pol­icy at the Brook­ings Insti­tu­tion, where he spe­cial­izes in U.S. defense strat­egy, the use of mil­i­tary force, home­land secu­rity and Amer­i­can for­eign pol­icy. He is a vis­it­ing lec­turer at Prince­ton Uni­ver­sity and adjunct pro­fes­sor at Johns Hop­kins Uni­ver­sity, and a mem­ber of the Inter­na­tional Insti­tute for Strate­gic Studies

  • Heather J. @ TLC Book Tours February 8, 2012 at 11:59 pm

    It sounds like this book opens up discussions in a conversational manner rather than a confrontational one, and that is something I think we need more of today.

    Thanks for being a part of the tour.

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