What Next In Afghanistan? The Five People Obama Is Asking
Click on photo for full story. Grades and comments are those of Phi Beta Iota.
Vice President Joe Biden. C+. Scale back, Drones and Special Forces on high-value targets.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. F. Delusional on Taliban as lovers of Al Qaeda, listening to slick Australian on spending our way into hearts and minds.
National Security Adviser James Jones. D. Good man that does not know what he does not know, drops from a C to a D because his job is outreach and ensuring the President hears from a diversity of views, that is not happening.
Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Adm. Mike Mullen. C+. A strategic savant trapped between a rock and a hard-place, his integrity fights his loyalty every day. A for the rest of the world, D for not calling AF for what it is: a blunder of epic proportions.
Defense Secretary Robert Gates. B-. Found his integrity in pushing the troop demand into the public eye after first being a loyalist. Learned from Viet-Nam that Ho was a nationalist after all, Taliban is more of the same. A lame duck while Obama decides between Chuck Hagel and John Hamre.
Administration Over-All: D. Empire as Usual, Bureaucracy as Usual, Sacrificing our Troops to Buy Time, Not Listening to Serious Experts, Not Able to Think a Strategic Thought, Not Able to Plan, Program, and Execute a Whole of Government Anything.
We knew the Pentagon had hit bottom when a former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (C/JCS) best left to his well-deserved obscurity said “Real men don't do Operations Other Than War (OOTW).” This is the same person that ignored General Al Gray, USMC (Ret), then Commandant of the Marine Corps, who in 1989 was calling for both “peaceful preventive measures” and what is today known as Irregular Warfare (nothing new, each generation rediscovers stuff–as Winston Churchill ikes to say, “The Americans always do the right thing, they just try everything else first”).
We were also very unhappy when flag officers who knew better allowed Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, and Feith to lie to Congress and get away with it. Integrity is about more than personal honor–it is about serving the Republic in good faith, and that includes protecting us all from enemies both domestic and foreign. Lies kill ones comrades. The current Administration is living multiple lies at multiple levels, which makes it an exact mirror of the previous Administration or, as the Libertarians are now saying: “two wings, one bird.”
The below piece warms our heart. We celebrate this blinding flash of integrity by adding a photo and short bio of this worthy gentleman. Now if we can just get the President and his National Security Advisor to flush the partisan hacks out of the White House, create a non-partisan Cabinet and a National Strategy Center, and buy-in to the 450-ship Sustainability from the Sea Navy and the Four Forces After Next that have been kciking around since 1992 or so when the USMC first conined the term “911 from the Sea,” we might just get DoD back on track at the same time that we learn how to do peaceful commerce and moral policy.
New York Times
August 28, 2009
By Thom Shanker
Message To Muslim World Gets A Critique
WASHINGTON — The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has written a searing critique of government efforts at “strategic communication” with the Muslim world, saying that no amount of public relations will establish credibility if American behavior overseas is perceived as arrogant, uncaring or insulting.
The critique by the chairman, Adm. Mike Mullen, comes as the United States is widely believed to be losing ground in the war of ideas against extremist Islamist ideology. The issue is particularly relevant as the Obama administration orders fresh efforts to counter militant propaganda, part of its broader strategy to defeat the Taliban and Al Qaeda in Afghanistan and Pakistan.
“To put it simply, we need to worry a lot less about how to communicate our actions and much more about what our actions communicate,” Admiral Mullen wrote in the critique, an essay to be published Friday by Joint Force Quarterly, an official military journal.