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August 18, 2006

Ooooooooh, I Hope Karen Hughes Gets Some Public Diplomacy Credit For This

Have you ever wondered who's the new top Marine general at U.S. Central Command? And what kind of decisions he gets to make? And why things have gone so very, very well in Iraq?

I think you'll be pleasantly horrified by the answer to all three questions, here.

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And beautifully enough for lovers of human folly and hubris, he was promoted one day before this recent meeting at the Pentagon:

...the president expressed frustration that Iraqis had not come to appreciate the sacrifices the United States had made in Iraq.
Posted at August 18, 2006 07:48 AM | TrackBack

The General is only thinking the way he was taught. That's what soldiers do, that's what they are trained to do is kill people. That's what we pay them to do. Soldiers do not make good policemen. That's the reason for the posse comatatis laws.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at August 18, 2006 11:08 AM

That's why we have them here on the border. Time for Cheney to invite the General for a good ole fashioned immigrant shoot. The moms who have enrolled their 4-7 year olds in the local chapter of the Young Marines could maybe be talked into hosting the event, or at least making some cookies.

Posted by: Jesus B. Ochoa at August 18, 2006 12:30 PM

Jesus B. Ochoa:
Keep your ass down your head tucked in tight and your shit together, innocent bystanders can and will be caught in the crossfire.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at August 18, 2006 12:46 PM

Look on the bright side. He's better than Jerry Boykin.

Posted by: Jean at August 18, 2006 04:51 PM


I often agree with you but this time I do not think it is just a matter of Generals who like to kill people. I suspect one of the jobs of being a General is how to avoid killing people as in how to avoid wars. I think it I quite possible that a lot of Generals prefer not to kill people or have wars.

Army Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton, who ran the program to train the Iraqi military, followed with a New York Times op-ed piece lambasting Rumsfeld as "incompetent strategically, operationally and tactically," and a man who "has put the Pentagon at the mercy of his ego, his Cold Warrior's view of the world, and his unrealistic confidence in technology to replace manpower."

But the most eye-popping instance appears in this week's Time magazine, where retired Lt. Gen. Greg Newbold, the former operations director for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, not only slams the secretary and what he calls "the unnecessary war" but also urges active-duty officers who share his views to speak up. Newbold resigned his position in late 2002 quite a gesture, since he was widely regarded as a candidate for the next Marine Corps commandant. His fellow officers knew he resigned over the coming war in Iraq. The public and the president did not. He writes in Time:

I now regret that I did not more openly challenge those who were determined to invade a country whose actions were peripheral to the real threat al Qaeda. [T]he Pentagon's military leaders with few exceptions, acted timidly when their voices urgently needed to be heard. When they knew the plan was flawed, saw intelligence distorted to justify a rationale for war, or witnessed arrogant micromanagement that at times crippled the military's effectiveness, many leaders who wore the uniform chose inaction. … It is time for senior military leaders to discard caution in expressing their views and ensure that the President hears them clearly. And that we won't be fooled again.

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So I think it is fair to say there are Generals and then there are Generals and when Mattis speaks out in such a manner it is clear that he is a Bush butt kisser and completely insane not to mention has no notion of what being responsible is.


I am amazed at the people of Iraq, simply amazed. After all we have done for them it certainly is a puzzle why they keep betraying our efforts to help them be more like us. I almost think the Iraqi do not wish the freedom and all the other golden opportunities we are offering up to them. And to think this happened one day after we appoint the good General Mattis who wishes to guide them with love and understanding why it is enough to break your heart.

And notice the reference to the domino effect mentioned by the good Mr. Davis. It sounds so familiar somehow. Now where have I heard that before? I wonder if he is talking about how Turkey and Iran are now preparing for war in northern Iraq.,,1852843,00.html

Turkey and Iran have dispatched tanks, artillery and thousands of troops to their frontiers with Iraq during the past few weeks in what appears to be a coordinated effort to disrupt the activities of Kurdish rebel bases.
Scores of Kurds have fled their homes in the northern frontier region after four days of shelling by the Iranian army. Local officials said Turkey had also fired a number of shells into Iraqi territory.

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By golly that sure looks like a domino effect to me but the strange part is that it is happening BEFORE we pull out. How could that be?

Posted by: rob payne at August 18, 2006 07:39 PM

Before I went into the Army I weighed 135lbs, had long hair, wore strange raggedy clothes, and I BELIEVED in peace and love and thought I could never really shoot anyone. I was much like the other guys at the induction center. First they took away my sleep. Then my individuality and in six lomg long weeks I weighed 165lbs, had no hair and dressed exactly like everyone else, and I'd learned to HATE. Not everybody gets over that. (I'm still trying) That's just the beginning and it goes down hill from there.
The General there has probably done his share of killing, being a Marine and all. You CAN'T throw down on some stranger you've never met before, put him in that PERFECT sight picture and squeeze one off, if your heart is full of peace and love and reguard for the well being of your fellow man. No, my friend, gotta have a little spark of HATE in there somewhere. ANYBODY can do it once, it's almost an accident, but to do it twice or more.
Your Army General there, he's just looking out for the troops because he loves his people and they're his people. He LOVES AMERICA and doesn't want to see HER strength wasted by some GREEDY bastard with an empty head, empty heart, empty pockets. That doesn't mean that when he gets that stranger, he's never met before, lined up in that PERFECT sight picture, that a smile don't show when he squeezes one off. To make General you GOT to love the job, and killing people IS the job.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at August 18, 2006 11:20 PM


I have no doubt that you know what you are talking about. I am not sure that we really disagree or perhaps are just talking about two different things.

And I do not doubt the capacity for any General to kill but I think the point here is that we are supposedly trying to stabilize the violence in Iraq if you can believe that. But if we are to believe that we are trying to end the violence then this seems like an oddly inappropriate statement to make.

Posted by: rob payne at August 19, 2006 02:07 AM

BINGO, you hit the nail right on the head. I believe that ending the violence in Iraq is the last thing this Administration desires. I feel that's what I have been saying all along. (or trying to)(damn lack of education) When the violence ENDS the siphoning off of BILLIONS of TAXDOLLARS ends. (YOUR TAXDOLLARS) When a HOOK starts with a lie the whole thing is a lie, even the part about trying to bring some PEACE.

Posted by: Mike Meyer at August 19, 2006 10:41 AM

What's with Bush? Talking like a defeatist? Turn that frown upside down, Mr. president.

Posted by: Lloyd at August 19, 2006 03:22 PM