Blog

Thanks to our Navy

By Jeff Schloesser | October 15, 2021 |

This week was the Navy’s 243rd birthday. It may seem odd coming from an old (older!) soldier, but I must wish my Navy comrades and their families “Happy Birthday!” Our Army gets to work walking, driving or riding, flying, and YES, sailing to faraway places. Without our Navy, and the Marine Corps, we would not be the dominant land force we are. My first experience with the US Navy was around 1966, when my mother and I were sailing “space available” on a Navy ship from Oahu, Hawaii where we lived at Schofield Barracks, to see my father in Japan,…

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Mentoring

By Jeff Schloesser | October 2, 2021 |

When LTG Guy Swan (US Army retired, and AUSA Vice President) and I were discussing my book Marathon War at the AUSA Thought Leader’s WEBINAR a few weeks ago, he commented about mentorship, and I wanted to share some thoughts with you all on the subject. He noted how many officers who worked under my command have gone on to very senior ranks, including the current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, the Chief of Staff of the Army, the AFRICOM Combatant Commander, as well as the current Polish Chief of Defense. We talked about the value of mentoring, and I…

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Confronting Reality

By Jeff Schloesser | September 25, 2021 |

We veterans, our active duty comrades, and our families have a serious problem. Suicide. We are killing ourselves at a horrific rate. We owe it to ourselves, those that love us, and America to do more to help those in need before they make an attempt, and for those that survive an attempted suicide, we must help them better than we are now doing. The facts are unsettling, anguishing, terrible. For those who have read my memoir Marathon War, you know I found the suicides in my division and later in my Afghanistan command hard to fathom and even harder…

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Grateful

By Jeff Schloesser | September 10, 2021 |

I remember September 11, 2001: I was a newly minted one star general posted to the US Embassy in Kuwait as the Director of the Office of Military Cooperation. The Ambassador, the station chief and I were huddled in a quiet place in the embassy when an aide burst in to tell us to come to the TV. The first tower was burning. We looked at each other, and the chief said “Al Qaeda.” One of us said “this means war.” And so it was. Two weeks later I was in the Pentagon with orders to stand up a new…

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Upcoming AUSA Webinar

By Jeff Schloesser | September 3, 2021 |

Hey everybody, I know I have been writing some very serious blogs of late, due to the situation in Afghanistan. Today let me plug my book as well as a great organization that supports all of our Army: soldiers, families, and all of us that have retired: AUSA. If you are not a member, think about it – they can and do lobby for our Army and all of us, and make a difference each and every day. They have a great webinar series on Thought Leaders, and they kindly are featuring this week my book and I, as well…

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Don’t give up now

By Jeff Schloesser | August 29, 2021 |

All of us who wear or have worn a military uniform, and all of our family members, mourn for those 13 U.S. servicemen and women killed this week in an ISIS-K suicide attack at Kabul Airport. We know their lives were cut short while serving a greater good, which was to help fellow citizens and Afghans who fought alongside our forces a way out of a Taliban-controlled country. Many of us – I am one – believe to give one’s life that another human being may live is among the most noble things on earth. That attack, with some 180…

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Helping citizens and our Afghan friends

By Jeff Schloesser | August 21, 2021 |

If you have read previous posts from me I think you know how I feel about the American withdrawal from Afghanistan and the urgent need to help our Afghan translators and assistants get out of the country, along with their immediate families. Every night I seem to receive another cry for help from inside the country. Last night I learned of a spouse (with a valid US visa) of a US soldier. He is in the U.S. and she was sleeping on the ground outside of Kabul Airport, trying to get inside the gates. The chaos so far has prevented…

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Shame on us

By Jeff Schloesser | August 15, 2021 |

No matter your political leaning nor whether you believe we should end all “forever wars” or you are a national security hardliner, if you are American, you should be deeply disappointed in your country today. As the American flag at the US Embassy in Kabul comes down under Taliban pressure, as US Army Chinook helicopters shuttle American diplomats to the Kabul Airport as others burn sensitive documents, I am reminded of the shame I felt in 1975, watching the nightly TV, as Americans abandoned Saigon and our embassy (my father gave three years of his life leading troops in combat…

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Confidence!

By Jeff Schloesser | August 8, 2021 |

I have been posting about the foundations of character, competence, and moral courage. I said that both self-discipline and shear hard work were key. There is one more thing I have found in my life that, when combined with discipline and work, has really helped me as I seek to be a better person and leader: that is confidence. By that, I specifically mean self-confidence. No matter how hard you work at something, and no matter how disciplined you are, you will need confidence in yourself to really accomplish the bigger things in your life – like standing up for…

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Time for America to ACT!

By Jeff Schloesser | August 2, 2021 |

Folks, I have been posting about the foundations of character, competence, and moral courage. I will continue that line of discussion in my next post, but this week’s news forces me to change the subject to Afghanistan and America’s limited time to act. And it’s a great lesson in moral courage. With America’s troops all but gone from Afghanistan and 31 August set as the date for a total military withdrawal, the Taliban are ratcheting up their battlefield pressure against the Afghan Army and district, provincial and national governments. This weekend they rocketed Herat and Kandahar airports as they fought…

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