The guy who surrendered himself with general’s in the beginning of his tenure as President?
Has separated himself from the general’s….
Has ignored past actions of respect for HIS troops,,,,
Has let it be known that other countries military alliances are based on money for him…
And has failed to listen or heed much of any advice from his military leaders…..
Instead subjected HIS military to political media pawns for him to move around….
American citizens don’t think much about civil-military relations. That’s good: It’s a sign of a healthy polity. We don’t worry about tanks rolling up North Capitol Street or paratroopers lolling about in Lafayette Square. We’re not that kind of country. But the president has taken a dangerous path, excoriating retired military leaders who criticize him and lavishing praise and make-believe pay raises on the active-duty military voters who he believes support him. A precious heritage built on the dual pillars of military obedience to civilians and civilian respect for military professionals is now at severe risk.
The president began New Year’s Day with a blast at retired Army General Stanley McChrystal, who in a recent interview indicated that he would never be able to join a Trump administration because he thinks the president is “immoral.” Trump, resorting to the limited vocabulary that has marked his later years, tweeted that President Barack Obama had fired McChrystal “like a dog” and that McChrystal is known for his “big, dumb mouth,” and that he is a “Hillary lover!” (The exclamation point, of course, is de rigueur.)
This wasn’t Trump’s first shelling of senior military leaders. In December 2018, he referred to unnamed critics of his slapdash decision to pull U.S. forces from Syria as “failed generals.” During the 2016 campaign, he lashed out at Colin Powell and John Allen, Obama and Hillary Clinton supporters, respectively, not for their politics but specifically to ridicule their abilities as commanders.
Once elected, Trump hired a number of well-known generals, not only to assuage the fears of his own party, but in order to bask in the reflected glow of their stars. He put John Kelly at Homeland Security and, in a departure from tradition, sought a waiver from Congress to bring recently retired Marine General James Mattis into civilian government sooner than the law allowed. Congress, relieved to have a man of Mattis’s character and experience between Trump and the Pentagon, granted the request.
Of course, he also put retired Army General Michael Flynn—now a convicted felon—in the national-security adviser’s chair. When Flynn had to be forced out, Trump reached out to an active-duty officer, H. R. McMaster, who could hardly say no to a direct request from the president of the United States. By the summer of 2017, generals headed the National Security Council, the Pentagon, the White House staff (once Kelly replaced the hapless Reince Priebus), and even the U.S. prison system.
This, in itself, was a bad idea. Retired generals and admirals are invaluable national resources who should be called back into government service sparingly and only for the most important reasons. Even when they retire, they can never really take their stars off, and placing them in positions of senior civilian leadership should be done with great caution. It should not be done purely to spackle the cracks in a president’s ego, or as a shot of political Xanax to calm the fears of a jittery nation. It is the most anti-Republican of sentiments to have Americans reassuring one another, as they have for two years, that all is well because the generals are really in charge.
Worse, it is fundamentally anti-American to disparage the courage and ability of senior military leaders merely because they are exercising their First Amendment rights on return to civilian life…..