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Petraeus’s Successor Is Known for Impolitic Words

July 20th, 2010 . by TexasFred

Petraeus’s Successor Is Known for Impolitic Words

WASHINGTON — To those who have served under him, Gen. James N. Mattis is the consummate Marine commander, a warrior who chooses to lead from the front lines and speaks bluntly rather than concerning himself with political correctness.

But General Mattis, President Obama’s choice to command American forces across the strategic crescent that encompasses Iraq and Afghanistan, has also been occasionally seen by his civilian superiors as too rough-edged at a time when military strategy is as much about winning the allegiance of local populations as it is about firepower.

If his predecessor as the commander of Central Command, Gen. David H. Petraeus, is known for his skill at winning over constituencies outside the military, General Mattis, 59, has a reputation for candid, Patton-esque statements that are not always appreciated inside or outside the Pentagon.

“You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap around women for five years because they didn’t wear a veil,� General Mattis said during a forum in San Diego in 2005. “You know guys like that ain’t got no manhood left anyway, so it’s a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them.�

Full Story Here:
Petraeus’s Successor Is Known for Impolitic Words

Seeing Gen. Mattis picked by Obama was as surprising to me as it would be if I were picked to be the President of our local TEA Party group. Fire eating LEADERS aren’t appreciated in some places, of that I am certain.

Gen. Mattis and I share a lot of the same views, we are not politically correct, we speak our minds and don’t give a damn who likes it, and we see victory achieved by actually defeating the enemies of this nation, not by talking them to death.

Gen. James N. Mattis is a Marine. He is a tribute to the Corps, and no Mr. Obama, it is NOT pronounced *corpse*. Mattis leads, he doesn’t hold a ‘beer summit’, although I would bet that his staff has enjoyed a celebratory drink on occasion!

In these times of uber-PCness it truly is a shock that Gen. Mattis has been chosen as the leader of CentCom. Not to denigrate the DoD and CentCom, but in the current administration, oh hell, in many PAST administrations, the POTUS seems to think that the title of Commander in Chief automatically makes him the ultimate warfighter.

It does not.

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates described General Mattis as “one of our military’s outstanding combat leaders and strategic thinkers.�

That description, “one of our military’s outstanding combat leaders and strategic thinkers.�, has me wondering how long Gen. Mattis can, or will last working under the most gutless POTUS in U.S. history. Barack Hussein Obama has openly demonstrated his disdain for the military and law enforcement. An un-PC Marine General is bound to offend Obama, sooner or later, and I am betting it will be sooner rather than later.

But the general angered one of Mr. Gates’s predecessors, Donald H. Rumsfeld, in 2001 with another remark that played well with his Marines, but not with civilian leaders in Washington. After Marines under his command seized an airstrip outside Kandahar, establishing the first forward operating base for conventional forces in the country, General Mattis declared, “The Marines have landed, and we now own a piece of Afghanistan.�

Mr. Rumsfeld and other senior officials believed that these words violated the official message of the invasion, that the United States had no desire to occupy a Muslim nation, but was fighting to free Afghanistan from the Taliban tyranny.

As I have stated on numerous occasions, Donald Rumsfeld was a less than competent leader and was *Peter Principled* throughout most of his career. Rumsfeld was no more a military leader than was George W. Bush or is Barack Hussein Obama.

General Mattis is viewed differently by those who have been with him on the front lines.

It was the first winter of the war in Afghanistan, when the wind stabbed like an ice pick and fingertips froze to triggers, but a young lieutenant’s blood simmered as he approached a Marine fighting hole and spotted three heads silhouetted in the moonlight. He had ordered only two Marines to stand watch while the rest of the platoon was ordered to rest before an expected Taliban attack at first light.

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Pentagon: Terrorism to be threat for decades

July 31st, 2008 . by TexasFred

WASHINGTON - Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates says that even winning the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan will not end the “Long War” against violent extremism and that the fight against al-Qaeda and other terrorists should be the nation’s top military priority over coming decades, according to a new National Defense Strategy he approved last month.

The strategy document, which has not been released, calls for the military to master “irregular” warfare rather than focusing on conventional conflicts against other nations, though Gates also recommends partnering with China and Russia in order to blunt their rise as potential adversaries. The strategy is a culmination of Gates’s work since he took over the Pentagon in late 2006 and spells out his view that the nation must harness both military assets and “soft power” to defeat a complex, transnational foe.

“Iraq and Afghanistan remain the central fronts in the struggle, but we cannot lose sight of the implications of fighting a long-term, episodic, multi-front, and multi-dimensional conflict more complex and diverse than the Cold War confrontation with communism,” according to the 23-page document, provided to The Washington Post by InsideDefense.com, a defense industry news service. “Success in Iraq and Afghanistan is crucial to winning this conflict, but it alone will not bring victory.”

Full Story Here:
Pentagon: Terrorism to be threat for decades

Sec. Gates seems to be a master of *the understatement*, a lot like the eggheads that keep saying that California *could* have a massive quake sometime in the next 30 years. Safe bets, hedged bets, they works pretty well, and the probabilities are in your favor.

Terrorism will not go away, even with a full victory in Afghanistan and Iraq, terrorism won’t go away even if radical Islam is totally wiped out. Timothy McVeigh wasn’t an Islamic terrorist.

But maybe Gates is on to something, fighting terrorism with “irregular” warfare tactics?? What a concept! And verbiage is everything, semantics make it all seem so much better.

Irregular Warfare? Wasn’t that what the U.S. Army Unconventional Warfare Manual covered for years? Isn’t irregular warfare, and the necessity of it’s use one of the really important lessons we supposedly learned in Vietnam?

Let’s face facts, we turned up the heat in Iraq, and to do so we drew down our forces in Afghanistan, and there was a fairly rapid resurgence of the Taliban in Afghanistan. We turned up the heat and it now appears that many of the insurgents in Iraq, those not Iraqi themselves, have moved on to easier picking so to speak.

When we ramp up our efforts in Afghanistan, and I feel we must, I hope the DoD doesn’t forget that if we make it too tough on the insurgents there, they’ll simply move on to less challenged areas.


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