MarkHertling Profile picture
Retired soldier. Loves family, dedicated to nation. Student of leadership, nat’l security & healthcare. Cardinals fan.
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Mar 8 5 tweets 2 min read
Just finished an engagement with @KimDozier & @abbydphillip on CNN regarding the testimony of our intel leaders on current threats to the US.

I mentioned the yearly @ODNIgov unclassified report, which I've attached. 1/5… The ODNI threat assessment is a short and easy read, broken down into 10 chapters and 40 pages.

Americans should take a look.

It lists our four major competitors (China, Russia, Iran and N Korea), but it also provides information on other threats. 2/
Feb 21 10 tweets 4 min read
Woke up early to Putin's "State of the Russian Federation" remarks. It's mostly being reported due to his comments about him deciding to end the New Start Treaty agreements.

While that was significant, there was MUCH more. 1/ Putin "vowed" to "systemically" continue the offensive in Ukraine.

As I said in this @washingtonpost piece published yesterday, Putin's military has failed, in all 5 phases of this war, in achieving his strategic objectives. 2/
Feb 16 9 tweets 3 min read
For the record, the Russian attacks on Vuhledar have not "renewed doubts" for me.

The doubts have been there from the beginning.

Any offensive, carried out by an unprepared army, is always a failure.

A short 🧵 1/9… I've not provided battlefield comments for some time because both forces are fighting hard, surviving the winter, and prep for respective offensives.

Right now, there's a race between mobilization (RU) and the preparation for planned offensives (UA). 2/…
Feb 7 10 tweets 4 min read
The @GOP is debating on condemning @potus actions on the China Balloon at the SOTU. If they do condemn, after the gang of eight and then other members it will only show how unserious they are about national security.

Why? A short 🧵 1/10 As I said on Friday, as a former Cavalryman I learned that unless there is an immediate threat, a smart person spends time observing, reporting, and analyzing.

While the immediate reaction may be "shoot it down," experts may provide a more prudent approach.

That happened. 2/
Jan 24 13 tweets 3 min read
For those saying "don't doubt Ukraine's soldiers, they've proven themselves & can handle any tank they're given," I'd say 3 things:

1. I've never doubted Ukrainian tankers to learn how to fire & drive the Abrams. I've worked w/ Ukraine's Army, I know them. They're good. 1/ 2. It's isn't "learning the tank" I'm concerned about:
--can they quickly learn the capability of the Abrams (& Leopard II) the way it is designed to operate. That's training w/ other tanks, infantry, scouts, drones,artillery, engineers, intel...all more than crew training. 2/
Jan 21 20 tweets 5 min read
Woke up this morning to find a thread from someone claiming I posted things that are "100% untrue" about the "M1."

I hesitate to respond to @secretsqrl123 - especially since he posted an insulting tweet (violating my rule #1) - but providing tank insight is important to me. 1/20 "David" is a "former ADA 16/14R & 96B/P (an air defense soldier & intel analyst w/ airborne experience). He is a "master driver & a 22 yr combat vet." To which I say "thanks for ur service."

Don't know how much tank experience he has, but he gets some things right in his 🧵2/
Jan 19 10 tweets 5 min read
The next US aid package to Ukraine will be announced Friday.

Reports suggest that package includes a large number of Stryker Fighting Vehicles & more Bradleys.

I'm pretty familiar with the Strykers. This is a terrific. 1/10… In 2000, I was commanding 3/2 Armored Brigade (Arrowhead!), when I received new orders to be prepared to field a new organization with new equipment.

Our Brigade would become the 1st Interim Brigade Combat Team (IBCT), then later the Stryker Brigade Combat Team (SBCT) 2/
Jan 16 11 tweets 2 min read
Military theorists & historians have –in my view, incorrectly- concluded there are 2 types of strategy.
One is annihilation & the other is attrition (or exhaustion).
While these aren’t the *only* strategies, it's helpful to understand them to comprehend Ukraine right now.1/11 A strategy of ANNIHILATION suggests a nation can defeat its enemy by forcing a decision (or series of decisions) by using overwhelming maneuver, effective political & military leadership, and combined actions (like offensive operations, alliances, economics , information, etc).2/
Jan 12 4 tweets 2 min read
.@RadioFreeTom nails it again. Yes, it was a big mistake and there must be an investigation & accountability & the govt ought find ways to prevent in the future. But mistakes differ from purposeful actions, lack of remorse, excuses for lying and refusal to return when caught.1/2 I’m going to bet the inquiry into the ones found with @POTUS may show some systemic problems w/ SSO handling as well. That can be fixed. Just admittedly taking govt docs and refusing to return needs to be addressed in a different way.2/2
Jan 10 10 tweets 2 min read
So, I put this information out and 2/3rds if responses are “why didn’t we start giving them this equipment and training them on it earlier?
For those asking those questions, let me reply with a few of my own that might help people consider the implications. 1/9 -How many Ukrainians do you think need training for these kind of operations?
-How many US servicemen will be needed to train them?
-On what specific pieces of equipment?
-since the US doesn’t have warehouses unused military equipment ready to give away, where do we get it? 2/
Jan 4 11 tweets 5 min read
While Americans are focused on the House & the the election of a Speaker, Ukraine continues to fight.

And the US & @NATO cotinues to look for *viable* solutions for equipping & supporting Ukraine on the battlefield.

Many rumors the last few days. What might happen? A 🧵 1/11 A few days ago, @bloomberg was 1st to report possibility of US sending Bradley Fighting Vehicles to Ukraine.

IMO, this is a a great idea...something I support wholeheartedly!


As I said a few days ago, I was a Brad Commander in Desert Storm. 2/…
Dec 30, 2022 9 tweets 4 min read
The wonderful @PamelaBrownCNN was about to ask me about this @washingtonpost article, but I think she ran out of time on @CNN tonight.

But I'd like to talk about it because it talks more than just about the "weapons" the west is's about training for combat.1/9 Most readers will marvel at the tactics & maneuvers UKRs army and its generals used in the east (Donbas) & the southeast (Kherson) during their Oct/Nov operations.

But there's so much more to be gleaned from this article.

It speaks to the transformation of UKR's Army. 2/
Dec 10, 2022 12 tweets 6 min read
Today, I RT this @WSJ article on logistics challenges w/in Ukraine.

It generated a bunch of "but what about..." from many who may not understand what goes into decisions related to delivering weapons to allies/partners.

So here's a 🧵on that. 1/… The @DeptofDefense is focused on planning & analysis as an organization for decision-making.

Each decision is based on a variety of practical & national security considerations.

As citizens concerned primarily about our own national security, we expect nothing less. 2/ Image
Dec 2, 2022 19 tweets 10 min read
In the last few days, two articles by @OrenCNN for @cnn & @DanLamothe for @washingtonpost on the potential for expanding Ukrainian training at @7thATC in Germany.

Perhaps some info may be helpful, as it is one many (me included) thought should happen.

A 🧵on training. 1/18 First, here is @OrenCNN (with @KatieBoLillis,@NatashaBertrand & @kylieatwood) in the article that officially "broke" the story: 2/…
Nov 27, 2022 18 tweets 6 min read
Many suggesting how Ukraine should "keep up the momentum" against the Russians in the NE (Donbas) while continuing to Melitopol (further east from Kherson Oblast).

While certainly desirable, both those efforts will be tough.

Here's why. A brief 🧵 1/18 1st, let's discuss the NE, Donbas.

Since 2014, trench warfare in the Donbas has been prevalent.

The line between the falsely described "people's republics" of Donetsk & Luhansk has become a no-man's land, and Russia's attempt at a "frozen conflict." 2/… Image
Nov 24, 2022 22 tweets 6 min read
Good military units will conduct “after action reviews” (AARs) many time during the conduct of training & operations.

AARs assess what’s happened & determine required adaptations.

Many of my followers are asking for a new Ukraine thread, but perhaps an AAR is better. 1/ Ukraine is 9 months into this fight. They're at the start of a new phase (Phase IV). Let’s review & then look at what may be ahead.

In this AAR, I’ll include past descriptions, slides I made at different times, news articles…and predict what we may need to watch.

Here goes. 2/
Nov 15, 2022 5 tweets 2 min read
It's right to analyze the explosion/strike near the Polish town of Przewodow before making accusations.

There won't be any conclusive evidence of the type of missile or where it came from until a thorough "bomb damage assessment (BDA)" is complete. 1/… But looking at the map in this @nytimes article shows
1) how close the strike is to the Polish border
2) how close the strike is to the Ukrainian town of Lviv
3) while it's not shown on the map, how close the strike is to the Ukrainian military base at Yavoriv, NW of Lviv. 2/
Nov 11, 2022 4 tweets 1 min read
Happy Veterans' Day!

I've had this photo hanging in my office everyday since 2004 as a reminder of what we ask of our military. Let me tell the story in a short 🧵.

It's a picture of a soldier from the 173d Airborne Brigade.
He had just parachuted in on a mission. 1/4 When most see it, they are appalled by the soldier's load. And yes, that's what they carry into combat.

But look closer...

It's hard to see, but he has a comrade right next to him. Soldiers always have "battle buddies" to help them through the tough times. 2/
Nov 11, 2022 4 tweets 3 min read
@soledadobrien @CNN Basically, Kherson is a critically important piece of terrain due to major roads (from Rostov in Russia to Odesa and beyond), wide rivers, important bridges, and ability to control access to Crimea. RU army made a bad operational mistake of moving forces beyond their ability.. 1/ @soledadobrien @CNN …to resupply. They also made the mistake of attempting to establish a RU government w/o the adequate supply of troops to “secure” cities in the Oblast. But the biggest mistake was pushing 40k troops across the Dnipro River. Without going into tactical details…2/
Nov 9, 2022 6 tweets 1 min read
Lots of commentary on RU withdrawal from Kherson & potential for UA capturing equipment & personnel.

Yes. Watching RU activities in this Oblast since about 3 Oct, was predictable.

Plus, from experience an enemy's withdrawal provides many opportunities. 1/6 Please know that armies can gain a great deal of intelligence from an enemy's withdrawal.

The UA has great intelligence gathering and that capability is supplemented by its partners & allies.

They won't be fooled. They'll know if RU action is a "ruse" or "feint." 2/
Oct 30, 2022 17 tweets 5 min read
Last week, @SpyTalker published a solid piece commenting on how RU's lack of an NCO Corps were the chief cause of failure in UKR.

It not the only one, but it's a huge contributor.

We'll see implications of that as winter approaches

A new 🧵 1/17… I've been evaluating the actions of both sides based on something the Army calls "Warfighting Functions."

Warfighting functions are defined in an Army Doctrinal Publication 3-0. It's a group of tasks & systems commanders use as a guide to successfully accomplish missions. 2/