"Reach Jerke at tjerke@forumcomm. and added one more through a headed goal by Ferran Torres to take a commanding 3-0 lead before Mali found the mark for the first and only time through their own top goal getter Lassana N’Diaye in the 74th minute. The book he published in 2003 describing his experience during the wars The Oath: A Surgeon Under Fire went on to become standard reading for American medical students,On Tuesday the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, a son and grandson of Navy admirals Generals and admirals will argue privately of course that running the US military today is a lot more complicated than it has been in the past Fighting terrorists is a brain-intensive not brawn-intensive work Cyber and missile-defense slots not to mention overseeing the production of ever-more-complicated weapons require constellations of generals and admirals The emphasis on joint assignments where officers serve in jobs outside their service has fattened the senior ranks Posh others say “I think there has been grade creep” says Anthony Zinni who as a four-star Marine served as chief of US Central Command from 1997 to 2000 That was before the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq which occurred in Centcom’s region “Did we really need four-star commanders in Iraq and Afghanistan” Zinni wonders “The size of their forces did not warrant the number of stars based on historical comparisons” There is a sense that Congress and the Pentagon following the 2001 terror attacks reflexively added stars to show they were serious about battling al Qaeda “But it’s as important to shutter unneeded or redundant headquarters as it is to salami-slice the `staff kudzu’ that has grown up since the 9/11 attacks” says Dave Barno a retired Army lieutenant general (three stars) who commanded all US and allied forces in Afghanistan from 2003 to 2005 “Fewer general officers makes sensebut chopping some of the overlapping and less-than-critical service and joint headquarters with their always-busy staffs is an even better idea” In actuality part of the problem is that there are plenty of generals and admirals doing lots of things other than waging warranging from legal officers to medical officers to public-affairs officersas well as battalions of generals doing jobs that colonels used to do Military scholars agree with the need for cuts if not their depth “When the number of generals is growing while size of force is shrinking that seems to indicate a disconnect” says Peter W Singer of the New America Foundation “A modest reduction may be appropriate but Im not sure one can rely on the simple metric employed by the armed services committee” says Michael O’Hanlon of the Brookings Institution “Pruning may be wise but Im not sold on the case for a 25% cut just yet” Like any bureaucracy those at the top take care of their own even as the ranks below are thinned out There are at least 12 US generals assigned to the war against ISIS inside Iraq according to a recent Daily Beast tallyor one general for every 400 or so US troops there The higher the rank the more money it costs taxpayersand a four-stars $181500 in basic annual pay is the least of it Theyre flanked by aides and the higher the rank the more aides there are and full generals and admiralsthose wearing four starstend to have peacocking fleets of generals and admirals with three two or single stars working for them This made more sense before instantaneously electronic communications but today is serves to slow down and raise the cost of decisions that ideally should be fleet and agile especially in wartime The Senate committee wants to cut the number of four-star billets from the current 41 to 27 a 34% reduction Those surviving the bloodletting would be the seven members of the Joint Chiefs (there were only five not that long ago) and the heads of the nations nine combatant commands Four-star officers not protected by the proposed Senate language include those fighting the war in Afghanistan (he reports to the four-star commander of US Central Command) the director of the National Security Agency and four-star officers from the Air Force Army and Navy in the Pacificall of whom report to yet another four-star officer The Army recently succeeded in convincing Congress to make that Pacific assignment a four-star billet Part of its argument was that because the Air Force and Navy had four-star officers in their Pacific assignments the Army wasn’t getting the respect it warranted from nations in the Pacificnever mind from inside the Defense Department itself It almost goes without saying that no one suggested that instead of elevating the Army’s Pacific command to four-star rank the Air Force and Navy slots be reduced to three-star positions Write to Mark Thompson at mark_thompson@timemagazinecomOn Monday the world learned of the passing of Stan Lee the 95-year-old co-creator of many of Marvel Comics‘s most beloved franchises including Spider-Man the X-Men and the Incredible Hulk Lee was remembered by a chorus of fans online who thanked him for his legacy of humanizing superheroes creating indelible characters and in the words of comedian Seth Rogen “making people who feel different realize they are special” Ryan Reynolds Mark Hamill Robert Downey Jr. Following his “not guilty” plea, a time when much-needed repairs are made to cells and tissues and supplies of nutrients are replenished to the body. 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