The Soviet system privileged party officials, political correctness, and ideological rectitude above all, even military competence. Commissars were placed alongside combat officers to ensure loyalty to party goals. Big decisions were made in ridiculously bad ways because of ideological blinders and commitments that saw “class conflict” and the “wheel of history” where it was absent.
The US military more and more resembles its Soviet predecessor, right down to an inconclusive war of Afghan nation-building. This week the Captain of the USS Enterprise was canned not for an accident or dereliction of duty or anything like that, but instead for making a raunchy video that poked some fun at the problems of integrating women on a combat ship, as well as other stresses of living with 5,000 other people for months on end.
The message to mid-level officers is clear: be boring, be compliant, and never dare question the ideological goals of the anti-military powers that be regarding women and gays, whatever the cost.
Incidentally, has the military ever tried to measure the impact of women in the ranks? I mean specifics: the dollar cost, the cost in human lives, degraded performance, levels of fraternization, etc. It seems a study like that will never be done. The old guard has been drummed out. The subtle impacts of special treatment are accommodated, ignored, or merely grumbled about in private. And the actual negative impact of women on training and efficiency in units like fighter squadrons, military police, or combat engineers is deliberately ignored.
Who knew the America of 2010 would recreate the New Soviet Man of 1919 l. . . . and this after the spectacular implosion of the Soviet regime in 1991?