ARLINGTON, VA — The Department of the Army announced Wednesday they are determined to eliminate all operational memory from more than a decade of fighting the Global War on Terror.
Secretary of the Army John McHugh made it clear that these kind of cuts were necessary in the post-Afghanistan Army, despite having troops deployed in the field. "The Army has acquired a lot of useless knowledge that we're currently in the process of purging from our data banks in the Pentagon," McHugh said.
Cuts to personnel have been the Army's greatest reduction of all, as mid-level officers and NCOs alike have fled the Army's bureaucracy in droves.
"Personnel cuts and a hiring freeze are set to take effect. It's a good start." said Assistant Secretary of the Army Thomas Lamont. "We have to go further however, and branches like the Army have to realize they've had it easy with learning invaluable lessons in counter-terrorism and counterinsurgency."
Lamont stressed that once finished, the Army wouldn't even remember having fought such a conflict.
"We're intent on reducing the Army to a spit and polish force, the likes of which will remind us of the roaring nineties, when terrorism was at best, an annoyance and we were more worried about Bosnia. That should eliminate any remaining veterans with operational experience, via sheer boredom."
Soldiers around the Army had mixed reactions, mostly dependent upon the amount of time served.
"I was a Private First Class during Bosnia. Even did a tour in South Korea," said Chief Warrant Officer Mark Grey. "I like to think that defined my attitude about things. True, when it comes to analysis, you're supposed to keep an open mind, but no one said anything about not maintaining standards."
"We did the most we could with what we had. Next thing you know, we're hip deep in a decade of war with ugly ass wash and wear ACUs with so much money, you would have thought we were the Air Force. Everyone faces resource constraints and we have to prioritize. Good riddance to the obsession over counterinsurgency and counter-terrorism. We need to worry about force-on-force. You know, like Vietnam."
Others were not as receptive as Grey, regarding the mass purge of operational knowledge.
"Chief Grey knows that movie features an irregular clandestine and cyber attack, right?" asked Specialist Ray Karney, an analyst in Grey's shop. "I mean, I don't get it. Sure, I'm light on deployments, with only the 'stan under my belt, but we should try and remember history, shouldn't we? Didn't the Navy have something like this happen to it when they forgot about the lessons they learned with U-boats — from the same enemy no less! Just doesn't seem right to me."
Regardless of the difference in generational attitudes, the Army's mass elimination of all operational memory proceeds, unhindered.
"The Army remains on schedule," said Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel. "We expect them to completely eliminate and/or discourage the retention of any human memory of either Afghanistan or Iraq by fiscal 2016."
At press time, Hagel offered no further details on whether he planned to use the Army as a model for the other branches.