Former Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld has a new book out its called “Known and Unknown.” It’s fascinating and I’m down here at Ed Naile’s favorite place, the Concord Border’s Bookstore and I’m reading it.
I’ve never seen a book that has such extensive strategy, tactics, leadership and self-critique. There is so much material and analysis to consider that I’m finding myself basically exhausted after reading even a chapter. I’m reading about Iraq right now and the section where he talks about strategy and how difficult it can be to implement even the most basic strategies it’s one challenge to make a hard decision it can be even harder to see it through and there are often disastrous consequences if things go wrong. And this is politics not war we’re talking about here.
So I’m engrossed in Known and Unknown. A short distance from me is a little man I’d later come to know as Bryce age: 4-5. His mother is also a short distance away looking preoccupied with an infant and it’s very small. I’m reading the book starring at photos at Iraq showing some of the meetings with the U.S. State Department and various military generals while the young master Bryce is navigating and attempting to push around a stroller that I’m guessing is his. Border’s is busy today lots of yuppiness and meetings going on, as always.
Is yuppiness even a word?
It doesn’t matter so I’m returning to my reading and no sooner as I drift back into the sphere of geopolitical strategy the young Bryce finds open seas with the stroller somehow he’s pushed against it sending the unit flying across the tile floor and crashing into a nearby table of a high level Avon meeting. Bryce then crashes to the ground.
“Bryce Andrew come over here this instant.” Says an awakened momma bear with an expression on her face that would have Fidel Castro and Saddam Hussein shaking in their boots, maybe not, but swinging decisively into action she moves Bryce to a safe location and retrieves the crashed stroller offering genuine remorse to what has happened.
No knee jerk reaction, mistruth or misguided rhetoric here. Just leadership.
But I’d still have to agree with Secretary Rumsfeld sometimes implementing the strategy can be harder than the strategy itself. Because this is politics not war we’re talking about here. In the meantime I think Known and Unknown is worthy of your time.