Friday, October 07, 2005

Should the Generals Resign?

The latest post from Col. W. Patrick Lang, a retired officer of U.S. Military Intelligence and the U.S. Army Special Forces who is a voice of reason on military and political events in the Middle East, from his blog Sic Semper Tyrannis 2005:

Is The Military Upset With Me?
Someone asked me if I experience hostility from the US military (active or retired).
The answer is no, not so far. I had a college classmate (a retired officer) write to me early in the Iraq War to say that my presumption in writing on this subject reflected his memory of me as a "smart ass," and that his present (then) employment as a consultant for a DoD contractor company providing hot meals for the troops should make me more sensitive of the fragility of his warlike feelings and morale. Touching.
There a lot of generals out there who are scared silly of Rumsfeld and Bush and would never talk to me in pyblic for fear that Rummy might find out. Warriors? A lot of them are reading this now. My father was a tough old soldier, rather like one of the senior sergeants in "From Here to Eternity." He retired as an officer, but in his heart he was always a sergeant major. He told me often that whenever I might be tempted to trust a general officer I should remember how he "got to be one." There are generals whom I admire. You know who you are, but the craven behavior of present day generals is depressing. Why has no one resigned in the face of stupidity on both the strategic and tactical level? Why?
There are a lot of people out there in "cloud cuckoo land" who would like to "turn Iraq into a glassy parking lot." That would work, but we are not going to do that. The American people will not allow that. That being the case, let us all think positively about solutions for this awful dillemma that we have made for ourselves. Above all, remember that "Specialist Snuffy Smith" of the Arkansas National Guard or "Lance Corporal Jones" of the 1st Marine Regiment were sent there by the government that we elected. They did not pick this war or this enemy and they only volunteered once, when they joined up.
Having said this, I should expect nastiness in the mail. I do
Pat Lang
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