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James Mattis Eyed As Trump's Possible Pick for Defense Secretary

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posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 03:27 PM
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originally posted by: odzeandennz
yes. kill kill kill.

we need a guy at the helm who is fascinated with killing.

make America great again.


What exactly do you think the military is for?

Quite frankly your opinion means squat to those of us who've had to put up with Obama's military policy for the last 8 years.

Mattis is extremely well respected in the military because he's unconcerned with making the Armed Forces kinder and gentler. He's concerned with making the Armed Forces better disciplined and deadlier on the battlefield. That's what matters.




posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 03:33 PM
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originally posted by: Pyle
Honestly I would prefer a Civilian to a retired general in Sec Def. No offense to the General. We have more than enough generals in the military as it is no need to appoint a retired one to the second highest civilian position.


No one whose job it is to fight on behalf of this country agrees with you.

We've had 16 years of politicians and people who forgot how to be soldiers running the DOD.

All its done is hurt discipline and morale.



posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 04:28 PM
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a reply to: projectvxn

There I'm going to have to disagree, if only slightly.

Most every soldier I know, all of them retired now, has told me when this comes up in conversation, that civilian oversight is the way it should go. Not the planning per-say, but control the yes and the no of operations.

That's not to say that the soldiers shouldn't be listened to, not that. That's where the issues/problems begin, when the civilians don't listen, but the converse holds true, as well.

Vietnam, and even Korea, were prime examples of this. Neither wanted to listen to the other, the result was a cluster **bleep**. During WWII, the politicians, with some sanguine exceptions **cough**Churchill**cough**, mostly listened when the admirals and generals had something to say--and the converse was true, as well.

The military in total control of everything is a road to disaster, as in coups etc...--but too much civilian control is just as disastrous, as we've seen.

There is a happy medium in there, and it needs finding again. Tactics are for the soldiers, strategy is for the civilians, with advice from the soldiers. Primacy to the soldiers, because they're the ones who are asked to bleed. They're the means to the end, the end, much as it may pain, belongs to the civilian side.

I hope you're not reading this as anti-soldier or military, hopefully you know me better than that.



posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 05:10 PM
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a reply to: seagull

I trust it's not rude of me to post a reply, since yours was directed toward projectvxn. One of the main principles Mattis adheres to is that it is up to the civilian government to formulate the goals of engagement, and it is up to the military to implement them. He has said in several interviews that it's not the military's mandate to tell the civilian government what to do, but that the civilian government would do well to heed the advice given by its military commanders (a great point you made in your post). This is all to say that we aren't headed toward a military dictatorship with SecDef Mattis.

Another thing which comes up often in his interviews, is his belief that the diffuse, changeable "goals" set forth by the civilian government during 4 out of 5 of the last wars the U.S. has been involved in are directly responsible for our grievous failures. When there is no clear, achievable political endstate in sight, we end up in these interminable cluster#s. That's not on our military, it's on civilian hawks with zero military service under their belts failing to define their goals, or keeping them purposely vague because longer conflicts mean fatter portfolios for them and their industry cronies.

Mattis has further always advocated for diplomatic strategy as the first line of action, once referring to the military and the CIA as a "brittle tool" to be used as a last resort should coalition-building and negotiation fail. Finally, he is down for switching to alternative energy for deployments and facilities. We could do a helluva lot worse than the Warrior Monk, regardless of his non-civilian status.


edit on 20-11-2016 by totesmcgrotes because: Ooh rah!



posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 05:13 PM
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a reply to: Snarl

This pic is making the rounds on FB and the net...



ANd BTW - I *love* this guy!!

Note for Mods - please don't ding me...I can't change it, and it is an actual quote.


edit on 11/20/2016 by Riffrafter because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 05:19 PM
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a reply to: totesmcgrotes

Feel free to reply.


Didn't say we were headed for a military dictatorship. If I implied such, it was certainly not my intent. There are far too many checks in place for that to happen here.

I like the guy, and he'd do a bang up job. My premise, which I probably screwed up, was that the military works best when the civilian and military work together as a team, with neither dominant.

Maybe I should have just said that...instead of the word salad above? Oh, well, I have a bad habit of stream of consciousness posts.

I agree with you that we could do a lot worse.



posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 06:39 PM
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Mattis , as Sec of Defence would potentially be a excellent appointment. I had feared that Trump would push for the next Robert McNamara or Donald Rumsfeld in a misguided effort to reform the Pentagon. A n nonsense hard nosed figure is the order of the day for sure. Make no mistake Mattis or who ever takes his place will inherit one hell of a mess. Some solutions will need to be unconventional by US military standards. I hope Mattis and his staff give the Pentagon Bureaucracy hell.



posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 09:03 PM
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Here's the main reason why we need this man somewhere in this godforsaken wasteland of a body politic:

"I think what we have to do is to re-discover a fundamental friendliness between all of us... I come back to an America that I've been gone from for most of a decade, or if I was here I wasn't really here, I was thinking about how better to kill certain people...and I come back and I'm wandering around this country, and it's like everybody's angry at eachother. I mean, we're Americans. Let's start with that, and remember that... mutual respect, admiration, love... I think we have to get back to a fundamental friendliness among all of us, and don't just go to a place where you talk in an echo chamber; listen to others."



Here's a FB-friendly version, since apparently that's how we talk about # these days:




edit on 20-11-2016 by totesmcgrotes because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 20 2016 @ 11:02 PM
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a reply to: seagull

No offense but a bunch of retired guys have zero idea what has happened to the military in the last 16 years.

It's gone from a premiere fighting force to a social engineering experiment. Training and morale has taken a back seat to social engineering and appeasement of every social idiosyncrasy.

It's hurting our readiness. It's hurting the well being of the soldier, and it is making us vulnerable as a nation.

We don't need more civilians with zero experience as a soldier, or civilians who have forgotten what it's like to be a soldier.

I've met the last two SecDefs and they are both political yes men and could care less what happens to soldiers or their families. They think another power point presentation will solve suicides, or #ty pay, or training time on basic soldier skills. It won't and that mindset needs to go away.

Right now that starts with the SecDef down.

edit on 21 11 16 by projectvxn because: (no reason given)



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 02:07 AM
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a reply to: projectvxn

At least a few of the "old retired guys" have only been out for a couple of years, they're younger than I am.

I don't really disagree with you, though I certainly made it sound that way, I was trying to be cautionary more than anti, if that makes any sense whatsoever.

Total civilian control, via "yes-men" is bad, I'll not argue that. But so, too, is a hierarchy comprised totally of military. There is a balance that must be achieved for it to operate best. MHO, of course, as a sorta kinda total outsider looking in.



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 02:12 AM
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a reply to: Snarl

A female NCO just tranistioned to a Cav unit without OSUIT .
She was a crew chief.
The say she received "200 hours of "intense training"
So I really SEE no future in it.



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 02:33 AM
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originally posted by: cavtrooper7
a reply to: Snarl

A female NCO just tranistioned to a Cav unit without OSUIT .
She was a crew chief.
The say she received "200 hours of "intense training"
So I really SEE no future in it.


Crap. Really?

That sucks. Mediocrity has now found its way to our military.

Where are our military leaders?



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 03:03 AM
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a reply to: Riffrafter

All the leaders who used lead have been purged through sequestration.

All that's left are political yes men, and weak willed idiots who care more about getting bullets on their NCOER/OER than they do about taking care of their soldiers.



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 03:12 AM
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a reply to: projectvxn

That really sucks.

My father - A gunny in the Marines - would be extremely disappointed.

Maybe the pendulum will begin to swing the other way in the next few months.

Hope, as always, springs eternal.



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 09:54 PM
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originally posted by: projectvxn

All the leaders who used lead have been purged through sequestration.

All that's left are political yes men, and weak willed idiots who care more about getting bullets on their NCOER/OER than they do about taking care of their soldiers.


Even civilian observers like myself are aware of the purge. Have you read Scales on War: The Future of America's Military at Risk by by Maj Gen Bob Scales Usa (Ret )? In Chapter 21 entitled Earning the Right the author deals with Women and Gays serving in the US Army with a fair hand.



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 10:18 PM
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originally posted by: seagull
Tactics are for the soldiers, strategy is for the civilians, with advice from the soldiers. Primacy to the soldiers, because they're the ones who are asked to bleed. They're the means to the end, the end, much as it may pain, belongs to the civilian side.

I can go along with you only so far. I would grant civilians the say in the announcement of the strategic goals. There are a certain set who are chartered to give the initial orders anyway.

But, the ultimate goal of war should be to utterly destroy the enemy. No half measures (and I firmly believe Soldiers are more than capable of identifying that stench). I'd go so far as to say that the military should be pointed in the general direction with the simple understanding that everything in front of them is 'the enemy'. Let the close with and destroy everything they must.

I also would like an accountability, post-action, against any civilian who interjected during the process and cost a life ... cost a yard of ground ... cost an extra taxpayer's dollar.

"They're the means to an end" is the same mindset Kissinger put on display. Not pointing fingers at him or you, but having been through my fair share of armed conflict, I have to say that I know better and respectfully disagree.



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 10:24 PM
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a reply to: Riffrafter

Politically nuking the Pentagon is the only way to go. Blowing up the ultimate legacies of Robert McNamara and Donald Rumsfeld is order of the day. Evidence from the Pentagon's shameful record concerning the Iraq and Afghanistan wars indicates the need for a far smaller and smarter bureaucracy. I don't see any other viable path forward , myself.



posted on Nov, 21 2016 @ 10:53 PM
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Ears are weird, but what's up with his left ear? Is there a story behind that? It looks deformed, like the lower lobe extent has been stretched.



posted on Nov, 22 2016 @ 01:51 AM
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a reply to: Snarl

As I've said many, many times over the years, both here on ATS, and elsewhere, I have nothing but respect--given that I'm a multi-generational military brat, how could I not be respectful?--for those of you who served/are serving with honor.

I don't really disagree with either you, or the others who've taken me to task. I may disagree in some slight manners, but never where it would cost lives--in that instance, I go with those who've smelled the smoke.

As for my use of "means to an end"? That was an extraordinarily bad choice of phrase on my part. Sorry.



posted on Nov, 22 2016 @ 09:16 AM
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a reply to: SignalMal

Jesus, I bet you were prone to blurting out rude questions to strangers in line at the grocery store as a kid (presuming you are now an adult, which might be stretch). Cartilaginous tissues grow as we age, and don't always do it evenly. Now, any thoughts on James Mattis' fitness for SecDef?



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