Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Patriotism Or Treason?

" I'm sick and tired of people who say that if you debate and disagree with this administration, somehow you're not patriotic. We need to stand up and say we're Americans, and we have the right to debate and disagree with any administration." ~ Hillary Rodham Clinton

I suppose there are a myriad of things happening in the news and elsewhere today that I could comment on, but the fact of the matter is, I'm just not too interested in anything I've seen in the news or on the internet.

I am mildly interested in the story of those 6 (seven, counting Wesley Clark) ex-Generals that are calling for Don Rumsfeld's resignation. It seems to me strange that they would all of a sudden come out as a group instead of individually. It seems somewhat....oh.....Choreographed.

But why? Why would six ex-Generals seemingly get together to try to force Rummy to step down? Are they disloyal? Traitorous? Patriotic?

I don't know.

My personal opinion is that they are traitorous. But not because of what they said. Because of when. In case the ertswhile Generals haven't noticed, we are still very much engaged in a war. A war that is creating casualties. A war that has yet to be concluded.

Anytime anyone attempts to undermine the efforts of the President and his staff and cabinet during a time of war, it is unseemly, if not outright treason. Unless there is strong evidence of deliberate wrongdoing on the part of the administration, and there is no such evidence.

I know little about them or their service to our country. I would assume they were all capable officers when they were in the service. They couldn't have risen to the positions of command if they were'nt well respected and well educated in the art of war. Could they?

No. I think not.

I am sure they are fine men with fine records and a heart for their country, which they so proudly served. They were all good generals.

But then, so was a General named Benedict Arnold.


Lone Ranger said...

This is odd. Hillary wasn't nearly as tolerant of people who disagreed with the President when her husband was in office -- thus the "vast right-wing conspiracy." See? Liberals CAN change their mind!

The officer ranks are more liberal than the enlisted ranks because universities have had a chance to warp their thinking. There are plenty of degreed enlisted men (I was one of them) but they got their higher education when they were older and better able to determine when they were being manipulated.

What these generals are doing, if not treasonous, is certainly treacherous. I'd be interested in knowing who appointed them. And there was collusion between them before they went public. They left an e-mail trail. Now I wonder what the other 7,000 or so retired flag officers have to say. You think CNN will interview them?

Erudite Redneck said...


Plus, officers surrender their First Amendment rights, LR, so they will say nothing.

Timothy said...

Are you freely admitting that? Just curious... They always made it clear to us that we had surrendered our rights and fell under the Uniform Code of Military Justice so that we could defend the Constitution.

Yes, the seven should be dealt with... but I don't think they will be... I would say, early retirement.


Erudite Redneck said...

The funny thing is I'd like to see Rummy go because he's too mich of a dang dove!

If yer gonna fight a war, FIGHT A WAR. Quit closing bases. Quit tiptoeing. Kick ass and take names.

We will rue the day we went into Iraq in this "preventive" war -- going against most of the rest of the world and our own ideals. We will rye the day we cheapened the definition of "war" -- witn the "war" on drugs in the '80s, then cheapened it further by caling this exceedingly complex situation with find outselves in *now* a "war."

We will regret Iraq more because we did it half-assed.

Never, ever send a Republican to do ANYthing that requires the involvement of the government and international relations -- even to fight a war. Repubs hate government and are not comfortable using it for anything.

Send a Dem. Dems respect government as the legitimate expression of "We the People," and are not afraid to use the power of government without apology.

Sheila said...

Lone Ranger,

I will echo Piffle and add crap and nonsense.

As a retired sailor, I can attest to 90% of the military being republican and the officers reflecting total consevative ideals.

SO that alone should make you sit up and say, "WOW, it must be serious for these men to have done so."

I can promise all of you that these men have very good reasons to be speaking out this way and it's not POLITICAL.

They spent alot of time trying to reason with SECDEF and HAD to wait until they got out to legally speak out. YOu civilians just don't get it. These men and all the rest of us are BOUND to oaths of loyalty. We can't speak out or pay the consequenses while on Active duty. If there IS a really good reason to speak out then we have to give up everything we've worked for personaly.

It's so easy for civilians to forget that once a career soldier speaks out while on active duty, they are subject to punitive action for violating the contract they signed.

Pay attention and get your heads out of the sand.

These men and ALL military carreerists are dedicated to the United States of America, their men, and their God. FOr you to balme this on politics is so shallow and just plain stupid.

I can't believe that this action by these men wouldn't make you sit up and pay attention.

Don't be blind.
Ok, Mark. Got to go back to that party for tomorrow. Not availible for full debate until next MOnday. :)

ELAshley said...

Not just Officers, every member of the U.S. Armed Forces. It comes with the oath, and is implicit in the UCMJ.

Now that these General's are retired they can say pretty much whatever they want, write anything they want, and they could always believe whatever they wanted.

I too find the "seemingly" coordinated efforts of these generals to be quite suspicious. And the timing... in the middle of a war... I think they're walking a very thin line between honest disagreement and treason.

Also, incompetence is found everywhere... even the military. And sooner or later everyone rises to the level of incompetence.

old soldier said...

I do not find it strange that any person would speak publicly to advance a cause. That cause may be to right an injustice or to promote oneself. Determination can only be found in the heart and mind of the speaker.

Tis true, that in 31 years of active duty in the U.S. Army, I found the majority of my fellow soldiers (enlisted, warrant and officer) to be more conservative in their ideology. That said, the military does not exist to promote political ideology, it exists to violently destroy an enemy. I find myself in agreement with ER (how strange). If we are going to fight a war, we should turn the hounds of Hell loose and let them do their job. To be moralistic and impose constraints in battlefield operations only serves the enemy, because it needlessly costs us precious soldiers’ lives. There is nothing moral or ethical about war and it is high time the namby pambies cease and desist in their demands to constrain collateral damage to the detriment of our forces.

Okay, on to the topic of the post.

These retired generals may be sincere or self serving. Or even sincerely self serving – who knows? I don’t find it strange that they have spoken out – after all, it is the national climate these days to dissent with whoever is in power, regardless of political party. There is no moral high ground on this issue. As for Wesley Clark, if anyone recalls his start in politics, he first went to the GOP but was not welcomed as he desired, so he switched to the Democratic Party. I’d say his true beliefs aligned more conservatively, but his ambitions and ego were not sufficiently stroked by the GOP, so he moved on. I have no inclinations toward the other six. I will say that Major Generals who have commanded a Division and are told they will not command a Corps have a tendency to retire with at least some bitterness. Each one of those officers (MGs) had layers of commanders between them and the SecDef, so I don’t understand their badmouthing Rumsfeld; other than speaking their opinion vs experience.

ER, I do disagree (at last) that a Democrat would/could run this war better than GWB. The two most likely Democrats to have been in office now are Gore or Kerry and I don’t see either of them running a war like Roosevelt did. I don’t believe either one would have turned their generals loose to obtain a victory as soon as possible. I don’t see either one of them acknowledging the severity of the problem we face in radical Islam. An argument can be made that Roosevelt handled WWII better than GWB is handling the WWIV, but that discussion is for another time.

Erudite Redneck said...

Gore would've been the best prewsident since, since, since Clinton.

Kerry -- GOD deliver my party from such elitest prisses.

Gimme back Sam Nunn! Zell Miller before he went off the deep end! David Boren!

Lone Ranger said...

Now, now, let's not denigrate the Democrats' warmaking skills. Remember how Truman won WWII? All it took was nuking two cities and forever blackening America's reputation. Remember how LBJ defeated the raggedy North Vietnamese? And it cost only 58,000 American lives. Bush is a piker compared to that. Remember Jimmy Carter's valiant rescue of the Iran hostages? Of course, the Iranians didn't even THINK about raiding the Russian embassy. I wonder why. And then there's the isidious way Carter won the Cold War by making the Russians laugh themselves to death. Remember Clinton's orders to wage a casualty-free war in Bosnia from the air? Genius! I wonder how many years it will be before we come up with an exit strategy from Kosovo -- a decade after Clinton told the troops to expect to be home for Christmas. Yessir, you can't mess with Democrats. You might be injured when they burn OUR flag.

tugboatcapn said...

Old Soldier, unfortunately Rooseveldt was not the Democrat candidate for President in either 2000, or 2004. (Which was your point.)

As to the "Piffle and Crap" crap, I am curious as to the opinion of the other 8,000 or so other Generals in the General Community before I form an opinion on the Military's opinion of Rumsfeld.

And that doesn't even matter.

If 100% of all past and present Generals in the whole Military hate Sec. Rumsfeld, as long as President Bush likes him, he will have a job.

As the President reminded the Media today, it is the President's job to appoint the Secretary of Defense.

Not former Generals, not Congress, not the Senate, Not Liberal Bloggers, Not the Media.


Rummy ain't goin' anywhere.

Poison Pero said...

A handful out of 8000 active or retired U.S. generals........That's a pretty good ratio in Bush's favor.

I was in the Air Force during Clinton's run, and can guarantee there were many, many more generals (as well as every other rank) which was disgusted with the psuedo-CinC we had.

Gayle said...

I agree 1000 percent with old soldier. I was going to call my husband in here, who retired as a Warrant Officer 3 after 20 years in the Army, to respond to your post. But I don't need to now. Old soldier has it exactly right, and I can't think of a single thing to add to it except to say your last comment: "But then, so was a General named Benedict Arnold" is right on.

Goat said...

So a half doxen retired flag officers out of some 8000 retired plus some 800 active duty have a beef , so what, they are retired.

Dan Trabue said...

"My personal opinion is that they are traitorous."

"Anytime anyone attempts to undermine the efforts of the President and his staff and cabinet during a time of war, it is unseemly, if not outright treason."

Y'all are tossing around treason and treachery a lot. Do y'all know the meaning of those words?

If a patriot believes that an American leader may be committing war crimes, or at least seriously undermining our beloved nation, it would be unpatriotic NOT to stand up in opposition to that leader.

"If only more to today's military personnel would realize that they are being used by the owning elite's as a publicly subsidized capitalist goon squad."

-Major General Smedley Butler

"May we never confuse honest dissent with disloyal subversion."

-President Dwight Eisenhower

Blindly following and being quiet merely because one's nation is at war is the worst sort of treason, seems to me.

Mark said...

Sheila, what party?

Mike's America said...

I had saved an audio clip of that Hillary quote. But it got lost in a computer hard drive meltdown.

A big Mike's America hug and wet sloppy kiss to anyone who can find one.

The audio is almost chilling as Hillary SHREIKS!

I'm surprised the audience of lefties didn't leap to their feet shouting "Seig Hillary."

Dan Trabue said...

So, you're all saying Shut up, be good little boys and girls and do what the administration says?

Pardon me if I say, Hell no!

I can't believe y'all are worried about this very mainstream quote from Hillary - a politician for whom I have no use, by the way. This is mainstream American thinking!

I know, I know: "Shut up you communist-loving terrorist or we'll throw you in jail without a trial and maybe throw in a little torture, to boot!"

Y'all'd be scary if you weren't so darn cute and silly and always good for a laugh.

Little Miss Chatterbox said...

I have that Hillary quote embedded in my brain because Hannity plays it so often :-)!!!

I think the generals are full of it and posted about it and Rumsfeld today :-)!

Jim said...

Wasn't Zinni a 4-star?

These men are now civilians. They have every right, perhaps responsibility to speak publicly about things they couldn't speak freely about while in uniform.

As to speaking against the president and SecDef in time of war . . . the president, Bush, and Rumsfeld have developed a perpetual state of "war" so that nobody can ever again criticize them without being branded a traitor by the administration and most of their supporters.