Under Obama, there came to be a cancer in the Pentagon

Pentagon

Obama purged the Pentagon during his presidency. Recent events give us an insight into the anti-American mindset of those whom he left in place.

Pentagon

Do  you remember when Obama started purging the upper echelons in the Pentagon, sometimes under cover of law, sometimes under cover of darkness? After the pullout from Iraq, Obama had a little list of those people he didn’t want to see serving anymore in America’s military. Some he fired outright. Others he treated so shabbily that they had no option put to leave.

Just in the first five years of his presidency, Obama fired almost 200 military officers:

[W]hat has happened to our officer corps since President Obama took office is viewed in many quarters as unprecedented, baffling and even harmful to our national security posture. We have commented on some of the higher profile cases, such as Gen. Carter Ham. He was relieved as head of U.S. Africa Command after only a year and a half because he disagreed with orders not to mount a rescue mission in response to the Sept. 11, 2012, attack in Benghazi.

Rear Adm. Chuck Gaouette, commander of the John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group, was relieved in October 2012 for disobeying orders when he sent his group on Sept. 11 to “assist and provide intelligence for” military forces ordered into action by Gen. Ham.

Other removals include the sacking of two nuclear commanders in a single week — Maj. Gen. Michael Carey, head of the 20th Air Force, responsible for the three wings that maintain control of the 450 intercontinental ballistic missiles, and Vice Adm. Tim Giardina, the No. 2 officer at U.S. Strategic Command.

From Breitbart.com’s Facebook page comes a list of at least 197 officers that have been relieved of duty by President Obama for a laundry list of reasons and sometimes with no reason given. Stated grounds range from “leaving blast doors on nukes open” to “loss of confidence in command ability” to “mishandling of funds” to “inappropriate relationships” to “gambling with counterfeit chips” to “inappropriate behavior” to “low morale in troops commanded.”

Nine senior commanding generals have been fired by the Obama administration this year, leading to speculation by active and retired members of the military that a purge of its commanders is under way.

I have no way of knowing whether some in that long list really deserved to go. Perhaps Obama discovered a badly-calcified, top-heavy, lazy, corrupt bureaucracy when he took office. Two things argue against that conclusion, though: First, Obama seldom fired other bureaucrats, which argues that generally he had no problem with calcified, top-heavy, lazy, corrupt bureaucracies. Second, in my remembered lifetime (that is, excluding my childhood years), I don’t know of any other president who pushed out so many high ranking officers.

When Obama was cleaning out the Pentagon, at least some retired officers expressed their concern that this was a purge, not a necessary reboot to a degraded institution:

-Retired Army Major General Paul Vallely: The White House protects their own. That’s why they stalled on the investigation into fast and furious, Benghazi and Obamacare. He’s intentionally weakening and gutting our military, Pentagon and reducing us as a superpower, and anyone in the ranks who disagrees or speaks out is being purged.

-Retired Army Major General Patrick Brady: There is no doubt he (Obama) is intent on emasculating the military and will fire anyone who disagrees with him.

-Retired Army Lt. General William G. Jerry Boykin: Over the past three years, it is unprecedented for the number of four-star generals to be relieved of duty, and not necessarily relieved for cause.

-Retired Navy Captain Joseph John: I believe there are more than 137 officers who have been forced out or given bad evaluation reports so they will never make Flag (officer), because of their failure to comply to certain views.

A Pentagon official who asked to remain nameless because they were not authorized to speak on the matter said even young officers, down through the ranks have been told not to talk about Obama or the politics of the White House. They are purging everyone and if you want to keep your job just keep your mouth shut. Now this trend appears to be accelerating.

Food for thought, right? I can’t say whether those quoted officers were correct or not, for I don’t know what was going on in the Pentagon. Maybe those retired officers were just whiners and malcontents, sorry to see the Pentagon under Democrat control.

However, when I look at Obama’s practical, strategic, and tactical demands on the military (e.g., draw-downs, aiding America’s enemies, unduly restrictive rules of engagement) and his open efforts to turn our military into a social justice experiment (e.g., women in combat, transgenders in the military, etc.), I’m inclined to believe that Obama’s decisions about officers were not primarily aimed at ensuring that our military was the best, most honorable fighting machine in the world. Obama seemed to have other goals in mind.

I’ve recently been thinking about all those missing officers and the mystery behind their banishment. The reason for these thoughts is that I’ve read statements from two officers Obama elevated to important positions and one who served under Clinton. The most touted statement came from William H. McRaven, the Admiral who oversaw the Osama bin Laden mission.

For those who’ve gotten hazy about bin Laden, he was the man who masterminded 9/11, killing 2,996 people on American soil. This attack included a direct strike on the Pentagon and an attempted strike at the White House or Congress. The latter was stopped only because brave citizens on United Flight 93 went to war with the terrorists. Bin Laden was also the man to whom McRaven gave a private, respectful burial at sea, one that ensured “that bin Laden’s body was be handled in accordance with Muslim traditions complete with.” How nice.

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Anyway, a little over a week ago, McRaven launched a full frontal media attack against President Trump, including the not-so-subtle implication that Trump should be the subject of a coup. This implied attempt to destroy a sitting American president came after multiple paragraphs in which McRaven burnished his own military credentials by draping around himself the lives of others in the military. And then this:

As I stood on the parade field at Fort Bragg, one retired four-star general, grabbed my arm, shook me and shouted, “I don’t like the Democrats, but Trump is destroying the Republic!”

*snip*

If our promises are meaningless, how will our allies ever trust us? If we can’t have faith in our nation’s principles, why would the men and women of this nation join the military? And if they don’t join, who will protect us? If we are not the champions of the good and the right, then who will follow us? And if no one follows us — where will the world end up?

President Trump seems to believe that these qualities are unimportant or show weakness. He is wrong. These are the virtues that have sustained this nation for the past 243 years. If we hope to continue to lead the world and inspire a new generation of young men and women to our cause, then we must embrace these values now more than ever.

And if this president doesn’t understand their importance, if this president doesn’t demonstrate the leadership that America needs, both domestically and abroad, then it is time for a new person in the Oval Office — Republican, Democrat or independent — the sooner, the better. The fate of our Republic depends upon it. (Emphasis mine.)

The sooner, the better? That doesn’t sound as if McRaven has the patience to wait for the November 2020 election, does it? That sounds like a call to arms . . . to military arms.

But McRaven isn’t the only one. Barry McCaffrey served in the Clinton White House and, judging by his words today, I’m betting Obama would have been glad to keep him on. McCaffrey is a West Point grad and a Vietnam vet. One would expect from him a strong grounding in history and a sober nature, one not prone to hysteria. Anyone expecting that would be wrong.

When word got out that Trump said the government (i.e., the taxpayers) should no longer have to pay for the Washington Post and the New York Times, both of which have abandoned any semblance of journalism in favor of operating as the media arm of the Democrat Party, McCaffrey got very, very excited:

I wonder if that tweet gives us a clue about the identity of the general whom McRaven quoted, the one who burst into tears and then started screaming to the Heavens about Trump’s iniquities. Only a hysterical ninny could liken cancelling newspapers to becoming Mussolini.

For those who have forgotten their history, there is no relationship at all between Trump and Mussolini. Politically Mussolini dragged every institution and business in Italy under the state’s umbrella. (“All within the state, nothing outside the state, nothing against the state.”) Trump, in contrast, is doing his best to limit state power. To that end, he’s been shrinking the regulatory state by cutting regulations, decreasing the number of employees, and trying to move the agencies out of D.C. and closer to their mandates. In this regard, it’s useful to remember that Louis XIV consolidated his power by building Versailles and forcing the nobles who might have challenged him were they further away to live in his court under his watchful eye. Trump has also limited his own executive authority (he’s the first president to have done so) and placed strict constructionist judges on the court.

Also, for all the (well-deserved) insults Trump hurls at the press, he’s done nothing to harm journalists. During Trump’s presidency, no journalists have been imprisoned (unlike Judith Miller, who was imprisoned on Dubya’s watch), none have been spied upon (as happened to James Risen under Obama), or bugged a news outlet’s phones (as happened to the AP, which still happily carries water for the Left, and to Fox, again under Obama).

Mussolini on the other hand…. Mussolini was a former newspaperman himself, and he assiduously sought to co-opt the media as a propaganda branch of his fascist government. Those who did not get with the program, whether within or outside of the media, were subject to shattering violence and cruel deportations. Today, under Trump’s presidency, Democrats cannot point to a single journalist who has lost a job, been deported, or been the victim of government violence directed against the journalist or the journalist’s family. And no, being called names at Trump rallies doesn’t count.

But wait! There’s more! The above examples are just general complaints (get the pun?) about Trump’s presidency from two former Democrat military operatives. Al-Baghdadi’s death this weekend, however, not only shined a light on the Democrats’ relationship to terrorists versus Trump (respect the former, hate the latter), it also revealed again the kind of military officer the Left loves — and the kind whom Obama promoted even as he fired scores of other high-ranking officers.

Before I get to this last tweet, let me remind you who al-Baghdadi was. Or rather, let Clarice Feldman remind you, for she provides an excellent summary about the picaresque adventures of one of the most foul, evil, sadistic “austere religious scholars” ever to walk the face of the earth:

First, a little background to refresh your memory. Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, was an ISIS leader. He was a very, very bad man. In 2009, we had him captured and imprisoned in Iraq. For some utterly inexplicable reason, President Obama released him from Camp Bucca. Thereafter, Baghdadi and his troops took over the Iraqi cities of Fallujah, Ramadi, Tikrit and Mosul, and threatened Baghdad.

Along the way they burned down everything in their path and tortured and murdered civilians, soldiers and police officers.

Director Blue posted a gruesome photo essay of his butchery.

Baghdadi photographed and publicized how he and his fellow butchers roasted alive men hogtied over flames, burned whole families with their children in cages, drowned prisoners in cages, raped and murdered thousands of Yazidi women and girls, and beheaded, shot, and blew up countless thousands of people.

Among those he kidnapped, tortured and murdered was a young American woman Kayla Mueller whom Obama failed to rescue in time.

After his Iraqi mayhem, Baghdadi took refuge in Syria where he hid out.

Aside from inviting sadists like himself to enjoy the feast, Baghdadi also inveigled Islamic true believers into following his train by enticing them with the promise of a glorious martyr’s death, one that would lead the faithful, not to a meeting with the one true Islamic God, but something better! Follow me, he said, and you’ll not only get “infidel” women and children to rape in this life, if you get killed, you’ll enjoy the carnal pleasures of an eternal brothel. Surely that’s worth fighting and dying for!

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Given the way in which ignorant and brainwashed fighters are brought into ISIS’s army, Trump understands that it is extremely important that Baghdadi’s followers know precisely how Baghdadi himself met that death: Did he embrace it as the final act of a glorious martyrdom that would give him the wonders of an endless orgasm or did he, as hypocritical a monster as ever lived, cling to life, dreading what awaited him in the afterlife? President Trump loudly, clearly announced that the same man who murdered tens of thousands and enticed thousands more to their own deaths, died in abject, pathetic, groveling, cowardly fear — and murdered his own children as his last act:

He died after running into a dead-end tunnel, whimpering and crying and screaming.  The compound had been cleared by this time, with people either surrendering or being shot and killed.  Eleven young children were moved out of the house un-injured.  The only ones remaining were Baghdadi in the tunnel, who had dragged three children with him to certain death.  He reached the end of the tunnel, as our dogs chased him down. He ignited his vest, killing himself and the three children.

As a throw-in, Trump again made sure in the same speech to remind people just how bad Baghdadi was, along with another reference to Baghdadi’s own cowardly end:

Baghdadi and the losers who worked with him – in some cases people who had no idea what they were getting into and how dangerous and unglamorous it was – killed many people.  Their murder of innocent Americans Jim Foley, Steven Sotloff, Peter Kassig, and Kayla Mueller were especially heinous.  The shocking publicized murder of a Jordanian pilot who was burned alive in a cage for all to see, and the execution of Christians in Libya and Egypt, as well as the genocidal mass murder of Yazidis, rank ISIS among the most depraved organizations in history.

The forced religious conversions, the orange suits prior to many beheadings, all of which were openly displayed for the world – this was all Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi’s work.  He was vicious and violent, and he died in a vicious and violent way, as a coward, running and crying.

Kudos to Trump for establishing unequivocally that America will catch up with the bad guys, that it will send them to their deserved death, and that it will not allow anyone to forget why they deserved the end they received.

You already know how the media and prominent Democrats responded to the unexpected news about Baghdadi’s death. I already alluded to the Washington Posts‘ infamous “austere religious scholar” headline (and you’ll find a boatload of spoofs here). Others in the media and in government were just as disgusting. Don Surber has a good round-up that includes the WaPo making Baghdadi’s death about abandoning the Kurds, James Clapper warning that ISIS will be “galvanized” by this, Bloomberg praising Baghdadi’s meteoric rise from teacher to ruler, and Nancy “the Leaker” Pelosi complaining that nobody told her about it.

Of all those pathetic, anti-American responses, though, the one that stopped me in my tracks was the reaction from James Winnefeld, a now-retired Navy Admiral who served as the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff under Obama from 2011 to 2014. He wasn’t purged under Obama, he was elevated. And here’s what one of Obama’s officers had to say about the death of a sadistic murderer who acted out his sick psychopathies against thousands of people:

Take a moment and contemplate what you just read: A former member of Obama’s Joint Chiefs celebrates the careful, respectful reverence with which America’s troops were forced to treat bin Laden, the greatest mass murderer of Americans in history, and mourns the fact that we didn’t do the same for Baghdadi, a sadist of the first magnitude.

As far as I know, Trump has not purged the military’s high officers. I’m wondering, though, whether he shouldn’t take a very close look at the caliber of men and women Obama left behind after his purges were through. If they’re anything like McRaven or Sperry, our military is in very big trouble.

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Bookworm came late to conservativism but embraced it with passion. She's been blogging since 2004 at Bookworm Room about anything that captures her fancy -- and that's usually politics. Her blog's motto is "Conservatives deal with facts and reach conclusions; liberals have conclusions and sell them as facts."