That phrase always ticks me off.
It's as if everyone must now use warrior-speak, and I'm sick of it.
Nothing against the article or the author. I just want that phrase to go away.
Since 2001, certain words and phrases have come into wide use, or at least into a new kind of use
Boots on the ground.
Shock and awe.
And I must not forget "massive", now used for basically anything and everything, to the point that it has become almost meaningless.
. Feel free to add to the list. These are all I can think of at the moment.
My point is that a definite change in our "American English" language- public language in particular- has both described and supported the post-2001 war state that used to be the United States.
Using these terms seems like bad luck to me.