If you’ve been involved in a pointless war in a hopeless part of the world against a bunch of stone-age savages for the better of part of 15 years, and you still haven’t finished them off, you might want a few successful generals in your cabinet, too. Of course, they might upset the snowflake media, which hates things that go bang:
President-elect Donald Trump has selected retired Marine Gen. John F. Kelly as secretary of homeland security, officials familiar with the decision said Wednesday, recruiting a third former member of the military’s brass to serve at the highest levels of his administration.
Trump’s choice of Kelly — and his continued deliberations about tapping as many as two more military figures for other posts — has intensified worries among some members of Congress and national security experts that the new administration’s policies may be shaped disproportionately by military commanders.
“I’m concerned,” said Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), a member of the Foreign Relations Committee. “Each of these individuals may have great merit in their own right, but what we’ve learned over the past 15 years is that when we view problems in the world through a military lens, we make big mistakes.”
Maybe that’s because you’ve had the wrong generals, Chris. After all, the point of the “War on Terror” under the Obama administration was never to win it, but to bleed the American military to death. And given the military’s ironclad deference to civilian authority, as embodied in the commander in chief under the Constitution, there was nothing anybody could do about it. So why not bring a few guys who know how to win?
Despite making regular remarks on the campaign trail disparaging the nation’s generals, Trump has long shown an affinity for them. In shaping his administration, Trump has prioritized what one adviser described as “can-do, no-bull types,” which the president-elect sees as a deliberate contrast from the personnel choices President Obama has made.
If confirmed, Kelly and defense secretary nominee James Mattis, a retired Marine general with the nickname “Mad Dog,” would join retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, Trump’s pick for White House national security adviser. Meanwhile, retired Army Gen. David H. Petraeus is under consideration for secretary of state, and Navy Adm. Michael S. Rogers is a contender for director of national intelligence.
Other figures with military backgrounds are populating the administration as well, including Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), who graduated from West Point and served in the Army in the Gulf War, is Trump’s nominee to lead the Central Intelligence Agency, while Stephen K. Bannon, a former naval officer, will serve the president in the West Wing as chief strategist and senior counselor.
A good, strong group. Naturally, the Washington Post — which disgraced itself and American journalism with its breathtakingly negative coverage of the Trump candidacy — can’t restrain itself from a little snark:
Trump, who received multiple draft deferments and who has no military experience beyond his years at a military boarding school, is said to be drawn to generals by their swagger and dazzled by their tales from the battlefield.
Or maybe — just maybe — he’s finally acting like a responsible C-in-C whose first allegiance is to American troops and not the well-being of enemy combatants. Who understands that the most merciful way to end a war is by killing as many of the bad guys as possible in the shortest amount of time. Who knows that until the Muslim ummah cries uncle — the way it did after Tours, Lepanto, Vienna and Omdurman — there can be no peace.
What a refreshing change after 16 years of Bush and Obama.