Good riddance to Mad Dogs

Apparently there are no exclusions. This mutt will bite anybody.

Defense Secretary Mattis summarized . . . more an “Obama General” than a Trump General

Opposed, slow-walked, politically undermined, was disloyal to the Trump administration he worked for:

  • on “climate change”
  • on illegal immigration policy
  • on the Iran Nuclear Agreement
  • on NATO paying its share of Europe’s own defense
  • on Trump’ transgender and women in combat proposals,
  • and who knows what else?

Actually, Secretary Mattis didn’t champion or even agree with the Trump administration and voters on much of anything. DLH

Defense Secretary James Mattis Breaks With Other Cabinet Members On Climate Change  (Mar 15, 2017 HuffPo article bold our emphasis, excerpts only)

Mattis said that climate change is real and threatening global stability. “Mattis’ statements could hearten world leaders who have urged the Trump administration to remain engaged on addressing global warming. German Chancellor Angela Merkel is scheduled to meet Trump on Friday.”

Secretary of Defense James Mattis has asserted that climate change is real, and a threat to American interests abroad and the Pentagon’s assets everywhere, a position that appears at odds with the views of the president who appointed him and many in the administration in which he serves.
In unpublished written testimony provided to the Senate Armed Services Committee after his confirmation hearing in January, Mattis said it was incumbent on the U.S. military to consider how changes like open-water routes in the thawing Arctic and drought in global trouble spots can pose challenges for troops and defense planners.
He also stressed this is a real-time issue, not some distant what-if.

Mattis has long espoused the position that the armed forces, for a host of reasons, need to cut dependence on fossil fuels and explore renewable energy where it makes sense. He had also, as commander of the U.S. Joint Forces Command in 2010, signed off on the Joint Operating Environment, which lists climate change as one of the security threats the military expected to confront over the next 25 years.

“I agree that the effects of a changing climate — such as increased maritime access to the Arctic, rising sea levels, desertification, among others — impact our security situation. I will ensure that the department continues to be prepared to conduct operations today and in the future, and that we are prepared to address the effects of a changing climate on our threat assessments, resources, and readiness.”

Not unreasonable in and of itself except this political general (his iconoclast shtick can be a political or self-promoting one ) and the science he relies on is extremely politicized, often worst case hyperbole or simply lies. He should know the science is not settled, if he is as astute as he thinks he is.

Mattis should have been at least loyal enough to faithfully issue the administration position and clarify that he was not implicating or suggesting climate change is not predominantly the result of natural factors and the administration position that current climate change accords are bad for America because our rivals and enemies ignore them and bad for the poorest countries (destabilizing them) as economic growth is inhibited.

Saying open water in the arctic is a real-time issue should have been clarified as quite probably a short term or intermittent matter as well, not necessarily permanent or brought on by any global warming. The latest on the arctic open water is that it isn’t (see references below*) But then Mattis’ shortcomings in “real-time” science, economics and loyalty probably make him the Pope’s favorite general, other than the gun thing. R Mall


Washington (CNN) Secretary of Defense James Mattis said Tuesday that he believes it is in US national security interest to remain in the Iran nuclear agreement despite repeated hints from President Donald Trump that he is inclined to scrap the deal.

During a hearing before the Senate Armed Services Committee, Sen. Angus King asked Mattis: “Do you believe it is in our national security interest at the present time to remain in the (Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action)? That is a yes or no question.”
Mattis replied, “Yes, senator, I do.”

“The point I would make is if we can confirm that Iran is living by the agreement, if we can determine that this is in our best interests then clearly we should stay with it,” Mattis added. “I believe at this point in time absent indications to the contrary, it is something the President should consider staying with.”

Except that the terms of the deal Iran may or may not be complying with are bad for peace in the region, and do not adequately prevent nuclear weapons development. A weak one-sided deal is a weak one-sided deal. So what if they abide by it. Delay in building nuclear devices is not all that comforting. As the report does objectively point out (a rarity for CNN)

Trump has repeatedly criticized the Iran deal, most recently during his address to the United Nations General Assembly last month.
“We cannot let a murderous regime continue these destabilizing activities while building dangerous missiles, and we cannot abide by an agreement if it provides cover for the eventual construction of a nuclear program,” Trump told the assembly.

That is the administration position and it was disloyal for Mattis to say anything else.


Defense Secretary Mattis disagrees with Trump, says he does not see media as the enemy

ABU DHABI, United Arab Emirates — Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said Sunday that he does not see the media as the enemy of the American people, disagreeing with a claim made Friday by President Trump about numerous outlets.

Mattis, asked directly about Trump’s criticism of the media, said he has had “some rather contentious times with the press” but considers the institution “a constituency that we deal with.” The defense secretary added: “I don’t have any issues with the press myself.”

On Friday, Trump tweeted that “FAKE NEWS media” is not his enemy, it is the “enemy of the American People!” He specifically cited the “failing” New York Times, NBC News, ABC News, CBS News and CNN, though he has at other times accused other news outlets of also reporting “fake” stories.

The loyal thing to do would have been to refer such questions to the administration’s press office. Mattis had no business commenting if he could not defend the President. And how could an objective general be so oblivious not to realize the press treatment of Trump is openly hostile including to the extent to have made things up? If Mattis does not realize such is an assault on the truth the American people deserve, then that disloyalty alone is enough to cashier him from what is a political appointment.


Jim Mattis tells US troops America has ‘problems’, urges them to ‘hold the line’

Mattis, a figure widely respected in the US military for toughness in the field married to intellectualism away from the front,

We’ve got the power of inspiration and we’ll get the power of inspiration back. We’ve got the power of intimidation, and that’s you, if someone wants to screw with our families, our country and our allies.”
Jim Mattis talks to troops

Mattis’s remarks came to light after, on Friday, White House economic adviser Gary Cohn was reported by the Financial Times as saying the Trump administration must “do better in consistently and unequivocally condemning” groups such as the far-right and neo-Nazi activists whose rally in Charlottesville, Virginia, earlier this month turned to deadly violence.

Is the report of Mattis’ comments an effort to further wedges in the Trump administration? Yes, but the bigger question is why such a political appointee implies by such language in an address that the President he work’s for and those addressed take an oath in part to, is not inspirational? Has he been to any of Trumps political events? Does Mattis think Trump’s accomplishments to date are small and uninspired?


From the Washington Times: General Mattis Criticizes Obama“In a criticism of the (Obama) administration’s social engineering policies in the military, such as allowing gays to serve openly and planning to integrate women into combat roles, the retired Marine issued a warning. “No matter how laudable in terms of a progressive country’s instincts, this committee needs to consider carefully any proposed changes to military rules, traditions and standards that bring non-combat emphasis to combat units,” he said.”  

Except after becoming Trump’s Secretary of Defense Mattis and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Dunford championed women in front-line combat roles and as for transgenders in the military, slow-walking the latters’ discharges.

So before conservatives go all weepy over the firing of “Mad Dog” Mattis as Sec. of Defense by President Trump, readers might better inform themselves on Sec. Mattis’s recent history…including his military tenure during the Obama years. Trump will do better. DLH and R Mall

*articles questioning strategic assumptions about a dependable arctic passage (and which we think by inference paint Mattis as a political panderer, not necessarily someone who ‘tells it like it is’)


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *