Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Third Retired General Wants Rumsfeld Out

WASHINGTON, April 9 — The three-star Marine Corps general who was the military's top operations officer before the invasion of Iraq expressed regret, in an essay published Sunday, that he did not more energetically question those who had ordered the nation to war. He also urged active-duty officers to speak out now if they had doubts about the war.

The article is continued in today's New York Times.

Not many will speak up. Just like the article says, it's not a good idea to do that if you have or are wanting to make a career in the military. And, as the article also says, it's just not part of the military culture to speak out against civilian leadership. Even though I'm against the war, I kind of have to agree with that.

But when these guys really disagree with what's going on, they have the right (and, in my opinion, the obligation) to leave the military and speak out about it. These people deserve our respect, because it's not easy to what they're doing.

The military is a decidedly top-down paradigm, and that's why it's essential that we, the people, elect only the very best among us to lead. While there may be a few heated meetings scattered around during the planning of a debacle such as Iraq, there'll never be a serious challenge. War is a political decision, and while the Pentagon can certainly throw down in the political arena (the budget process in particular comes to mind), they are not one challenge broad policy decisions such as this. Their job is to execute.


Blogger Steve said...

Crooks and Liars has the video link of Gen. Zinni on Meet The Press a week or so ago.

I find it amazing that there are so many military personnel coming out of the Iraq encounter and are seeking office because they disagree with current policy and actions. Maybe it's more publicized now, but you really didn't see ex-military running for office in the past 20 years. Maybe because of the internet, information about races across the country is more accessible. Maybe I just wasn't paying attention.

It seems as though a law degree was the only way to get a high ranking position for quite some time. With major focus on the military due to Iraq and Afghanistan, it's opening up doors that I think may have been partially closed for a while.

Take a look at Band of Brothers for a line up of what's been dubbed "Fighting Dems." I've searched a bit and I don't know of and can't find a republican/conservative counterpart.

Tue Apr 11, 09:32:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Steve said...

Crooks and Liars also has video of Gen. Joulwan on CNN's Situation Room.

Also a link to Lt. Gen. Newbold's article in Time.

Tue Apr 11, 10:11:00 PM 2006  

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