A new presidential leadership text: The art of the forest

TThe military describes leadership as “the process of influencing people by providing them with purpose, direction and motivation as you work to accomplish a mission and improve the organization.”

In contrast, President Joe Biden seems to believe that leadership involves a refusal to adapt to changing circumstances, followed by hiding in a forest.

That is exactly what the president is doing right now.

He hides in the forests of Catoctin Mountain Park in Maryland, particularly in the exquisite woods of Camp David. But the cover-up is clear. Biden left for the forest on Friday, but he won’t be back in Washington until Wednesday. Whatever one thinks of Biden’s decision to hand Afghanistan over to the Taliban and al-Qaeda (I think it’s disastrous for America and our global credibility as a superpower), his leadership is inexcusable. .

What Should Army and Marine Corps Officers Say to Their Personnel? After all, as Biden hides in his forest, young Americans are sweeping through Afghanistan. They may be faced with combat, forced to fight to extricate diplomats and those lucky Afghans with American visas. These soldiers will ask themselves: how did it get so bad so quickly? Others will simply ask, “What are we doing?” But they will do their job well.

Their officers, however, will not look with emotion on Biden’s escape to the Maryland Hills. No leadership course in Annapolis, West Point, Colorado Springs, or New London involves the instruction: “When faced with a great challenge, the unit leader must hide in the forest or some other hidden place.” and let his subordinates make excuses for failure.

On September 11, we may see the Taliban waltz with al-Qaeda in the burnt-out ruins of the former US Embassy in Kabul. The enemy will pray with gratitude for his orderly victory. He will recognize Allah’s patient reward for those who struggle. And its restored haven of peace, al-Qaeda will reconstitute itself around a new September 11.

But at least the commander-in-chief has his forest.


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Kevin E. Boling

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