by Andy Weddington
Thursday, 08 December 2016
"I believe a man that has not served in the military is incomplete." Harry F. Weddington, Jr.
A better opening quote did not come to mind.
Dad, a veteran (10 years U. S. Air Force), offered that bit of perspective for as long as I can remember.
Seed planted. Nourished. Yet he did not push any of his children into military service. Through example, and a relevant story on occasion, he encouraged.
Nevertheless, his four sons are veterans (Navy, Coast Guard, Marine Corps). And his daughter married a veteran (Air Force and son of an Air Force veteran).
President-elect Trump has nominated General John Kelly, USMC (Retired), to head Homeland Security.
With General Joe Dunford, USMC, as Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff, and General James Mattis, USMC (Retired), nominated to be Secretary of Defense that would place three Marines in key assignments tasked with protecting and defending our United States.
Already some (mostly election disgruntled) politicians and citizens of note (as they consider themselves) are voicing concerns about Mr. Trump "militarizing" his Cabinet.
Since when did military service (despite current law, made post World War II [arguably antiquated], requiring 7 years between retirement and re-entering public service) become a disqualifying variable?
As to national security, we have lived negligence, at the least. Gross incompetence others charge. And purposeful dereliction some suspect.
President Obama so much as confirmed during a recent interview with (ridiculous) claim the enemy, and its true strength, was not on his Intel radar. The Intel community, Congress, and the public knows otherwise. So his statement alone suggestive of something disturbing worthy of investigation.
Tiresome is an 8-year failed President shirking responsibilities for falsely and wrongly blaming the citizenry he fractured. But that is another comment.
Are there more experienced and qualified citizens to best continue service to country and advise our new President in matters of national defense and security?
But would you turn to an orthopedist if requiring a lung transplant or heart surgery? Or a waste management specialist if requiring hip or knee replacement? How about brain surgery?
Perhaps extreme examples but germane to point.
Considering national and global circumstances, not only is the military experience of these men a benefit such should be viewed as essential, a requirement.
As to the three Marine generals, what do they know?
They know the enemy.
They know the realities of combat - all have led Marines in battle.
They have seen Marines and Sailors die.
General Kelly knows the realities of combat up close and personal - his Marine son killed in combat in Afghanistan. His friend, General Dunford, donned dress uniform to deliver the news. Picture that.
General Mattis, as reported, after retiring, quietly traveled the country visiting Gold Star families of Marines that served under his command. That's something Hollywood might include in a movie but not think of until someone did it.
These men are not politicians.
These men are not safe-space academia hacks, wimps, whiners and twits ("p" word understood as inclusive).
These men are not glad-handers, arm-chair theorists, nor La La Land pontificates.
These men have no necessary need to continue any sort of public service.
But they do.
These men continue to serve (General Dunford) and are answering our new President's call (Generals Mattis and Kelly) for their knowledge, experience, deep love of country, and professional sense of duty.
The bottom line is these are serious men.
They are grounded in reality.
They are direct no non-sense plain-speaking truth-tellers.
They are leaders.
Each an infantryman - MOS (Military Occupational Speciality 0302). Better to now acronym MOS 'Ministers Of Sanity' (of peace and quiet) - because that is their ultimate objective.
They are men who know how to identify the enemy, close with, and destroy them. And do the necessary killing efficiently and effectively.
They are men who men follow.
They are men who know how to protect us.
Thoughts of "militarizing" our government?
Were President-elect Trump interviewing lesser men or women, we should all be concerned. Terrified more like it.
In fact, considering his instinctive genius taking down 16 opponents for the GOP nomination while momentarily dismantling the Republican Party, he'd be considered incompetent. And under attack more so than presently.
Seems to me, President-elect Trump is carefully completing his Cabinet with complete men.
And more good news is there are plenty of like trained, experienced, gifted, and ready and able men and women standing by should duty call.
Dad - though eternally still, the wisest, most capable, most complete man known to me; still - would agree.
And that is not to say Mr. Trump should not be asking tough questions.
Previous commentary - General Trump's Generals - pertains.