William Katz:  Urgent Agenda






THANK YOU, GENERAL – AT 11:44 A.M. ET:  Chuck Hagel is being brought in to slash the Pentagon budget.  And American officers are being told, in many ways subtle and not, to toe the line if they want careers.  I remain convinced that General Petraeus's resignation as CIA director was forced, not because he'd had an affair, but because he wouldn't go along with the Obama party line on Benghazi.

Now we have another incident that demonstrates this administration's real attitude toward the American military.  From the Weekly Standard: 

President Barack Obama fired General James Mattis, the head of Central Command, without even calling the general to let him know he was being replaced.

"I am told that General Mattis was travelling and in a meeting when an aide passed him a note telling him that the Pentagon had announced his replacement as head of Central Command. It was news to him -- he hadn't received a phone call or a heads-up from anyone at the Pentagon or the White House," Thomas E. Ricks reports.

In another post, Ricks says Mattis was fired because:

Pentagon insiders say that he rubbed civilian officials the wrong way -- not because he went all "mad dog," which is his public image, and the view at the White House, but rather because he pushed the civilians so hard on considering the second- and third-order consequences of military action against Iran. Some of those questions apparently were uncomfortable. Like, what do you do with Iran once the nuclear issue is resolved and it remains a foe? What do you do if Iran then develops conventional capabilities that could make it hazardous for U.S. Navy ships to operate in the Persian Gulf? He kept saying, "And then what?"

There is also a belief that Mattis and Obama differed on Iran. "A particular point of disagreement was what to do about mischief Iran is exporting to other countries. Mattis is indeed more hawkish on this than the White House was," writes Ricks in yet another post.

COMMENT:  Why should anyone be surprised?  And every time Obama insults the military, his base cheers.  This is not the Democratic Party of John F. Kennedy.  Kennedy couldn't have come anywhere near a presidential nomination in today's Dem Party. 

Stand by for more of this.  Just once, for the first time in more than half a century, I'd like to see someone wearing stars resign in protest over this administration's policies.  The last time I recall that happening was Lt. Gen. James M. Gavin's resignation in the 1950s, in protest over, ironically, Dwight Eisenhower's defense structure. 

January 26, 2013