I do not like to be an armchair quarterback, however, I feel the need to speak up.
Just for credentials I spent 30+ years in Fire Management with the BLM. I was the Fire Management Officer on three BLM districts, BLM Montana State FMO, Fire Staff in Washington DC and Chief of Fire Management at the National Interagency Fire Center in Boise ID. I waw also a Type I Incident Commander.
In all my years I never heard talk about monitoring fires, except rarely by the National Park Service. It is a concept which I fail to comprehend. The easiest fire to suppress is the small one. Regardless of what is spent to put it out it is still as cheap as it will probably get. Waiting until they become unmanageable and then attacking them does not make sense.
As far as loss of forest resources, in this day of environmental input, chances are very good the timber will never be utilized anyway. Fires also open up the forest for increased wildlife use.
The down side is the extreme large fire expense, lost property, and the worst, the constant valley of smoke. Who knows what effect this will have on our health now or in the future?
We need to get back to aggressive initial attack on all fires, regardless of where they start. Unfortunately, fires do not respect Wilderness boundaries. This will not eliminate large fires but will cut down their numbers.
Fire is a great useful tool but use it when all factors are in our favor, not when fire conditions favor the fire.