Tuesday, June 22, 2010


Today, it was reported that President Obama has summoned the top US commander in Afghanistan to the White House.   Reportedly, he is to explain "derogatory" remarks he made about the administration, in a Rolling Stones  article.

Hummm.... let's think a minute.  Let's start off by saying that my father retired from the Marine Corps and I served seven years in the same.  So , I have some familiarity with the Armed Services.  As I remember correctly,  The President is the Commander in Chief of the Armed Services.  Last time I looked,  this general fell in that group.

General Stanly McChrystal was totally inappropriate in making his comments public.  No excuse.  I learned early in life, Praise in Public, Criticise in Private.  Especially when it gives aid and comfort to the enemy. And this man spoke publicly against his Commander in Chief. And I don't even know what he said.  Just that is supposedly derogatory.

I have several problems with this situation.

First,   let's address the summoning of the General and the "authority" President Obama has to "fire" him  as spelled out in the AP report.  The President doesn't summon , he orders and every member of the Armed Forces is sworn, before God, to obey.  (I hope they still swear the oath)   And a General, for that matter the lowliest private, doesn't get "fired.  They get relieved and/or  forced to retire or discharged. But this man is not a used car salesman, who showed up late too many times. 

Second, this man was picked by the President to replace someone else.  Obviously, at that time he was on board with the direction things were going.  What happened?  What did he really say?  Granted, I don't have a copy in front of me, but it seems like the remarks were were made by aides to the general. And there were some inappropriate jokes about members of the administration.   That sort of commentary has been part of military life from it's inception.  No big deal right?  Then  you remember what Obama thinks of anybody that dares to disagree or criticise him.  Fox News, bloggers, people against health care.  Remember the Rahm Emanuel "retard" remark?  So, if the General has said anything against Obama, he'll soon wish he was back in Afghanistan.  As point man on patrol,  quicker that way.

Third, when did Generals become rock stars?  We have changed our military when the Commanding General is giving out interviews to Rolling Stone.(A fine magazine)  Shouldn't he be taking care of business?  You know, like winning this damn thing and taking care of the troops.  But we ( the collective we)  have turned our military into a parapolitical organization. Every member of the military has to be a PR spokesman nowadays.  We should return to the days when the political masters  said do this or that and the military did it.  President Bush understood.  Don't ask the military to be something it isn't. 

The General was wrong and should be relieved if there is just cause.  If he wasn't taking care of business, relieve him.  Have him counting mess kits somewhere. However, with this administration's attitude toward anyone who dares to criticise,  he may get "fired" for a joke.   Should that kind of triviality be apart of our National Policy?  

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