“In this spirit, I offer three historically validated observations about the character of combat. First, war is a dangerous and uncertain activity that will tax a person’s mind, body, and spirit to the limits. In war, Murphy’s law is the rule rather than the exception. Second, war is more art than science. It is an activity dominated by improvisation and ingenuity. It is essential a human activity—a contest between thinking, emotional beings. It is not a battle of machines. Third, only the warrior can understand war, and the warrior is our best hope for improving both our deterrent and war-fighting capability.”
Lt Gen Leo Marquez The Logistics Warrior, AF Journal of Logistics, Spring 1986
Lt Gen Leo Marquez and his tremendous influence regarding maintenance, munitions, and logistics excellence still reverberates today throughout the entire force.
His comments and writings as the Deputy Chief of Staff, Logistics and Engineering are still applicable today. I think it is fair to say we have grown comfortable at our forward AOR postings complete with WiFi and Green Bean coffee vendors. General Marquez is correct what happens when things get really tough?
One of the exercises designed to test our “abilities to survive and operate” occurred at Spangdahlem AB, West Germany in the Spring of 1985. It sure was a busy few weeks for SSgt Decker and the rest of the Spangdahlem compliment.