Sunday, June 27, 2010

McChrystal for (Fill in the blank here)

There is an interesting OPED piece by Frank Rich at the NYT today.....

" The 36 Hours That Shook Washington " - While it goes into some of the "back story" regarding the Sacking of the General, it touches on some themes that lead me to another place.

" What we saw was this: 1) Much of the Beltway establishment was blindsided by Michael Hastings’s scoop, an impressive feat of journalism by a Washington outsider who seemed to know more about what was going on in Washington than most insiders did; 2) Obama’s failure to fire McChrystal months ago for both his arrogance and incompetence was a grievous mistake that illuminates a wider management shortfall at the White House; 3) The present strategy has produced no progress in this nearly nine-year-old war, even as the monthly coalition body count has just reached a new high. "

The casual reader will know that there is much there "in-between" the lines as there is in the words that were written. The indictment of the culture of WASH DC and the present Administration is evident in the anti-incumbent fever that is sweeping the land.

So that leads us to the next point, who better to take on the festering system that is our Government than a Military Leader who has a great disdain for all that represents bloated, ineffective and inefficent systems & structures. This clip from the Rolling Stone article illustrates the point perfectly:

'How'd I get screwed into going to this dinner?" demands Gen. Stanley McChrystal. It's a Thursday night in mid-April, and the commander of all U.S. and NATO forces in Afghanistan is sitting in a four-star suite at the H̫tel Westminster in Paris. He's in France to sell his new war strategy to our NATO allies Рto keep up the fiction, in essence, that we actually have allies.....

"The dinner comes with the position, sir," says his chief of staff, Col. Charlie Flynn.
McChrystal turns sharply in his chair.

"Hey, Charlie," he asks, "does this come with the position?"
McChrystal gives him the middle finger.

Dressed in off-the-rack civilian casual – blue tie, button-down shirt, dress slacks – McChrystal is way out of his comfort zone. Paris, as one of his advisers says, is the "most anti-McChrystal city you can imagine." The general hates fancy restaurants, rejecting any place with candles on the tables as too "Gucci."...

McChrystal takes a final look around the suite. At 55, he is gaunt and lean, not unlike an older version of Christian Bale in Rescue Dawn. His slate-blue eyes have the unsettling ability to drill down when they lock on you. If you've (f'ed) up or disappointed him, they can destroy your soul without the need for him to raise his voice.

"I'd rather have my ass kicked by a roomful of people than go out to this dinner," McChrystal says.
He pauses a beat.

"Unfortunately," he adds, "no one in this room could do it."
With that, he's out the door."

The key point illustrated is that he is a " Pattonesque" leader who has been tried in the fires-of-battle that would wither the average politician who has never even heard a shot fired in anger....His mettle is genuine, brusk and decidedly UN-P.C., which is the breath-of-fresh air that sorely needs to be interjected into the whole of WASH DC.
He has not been adverse to making some unpopular decisions also. Taking the Burger King & other fast food joints out of AFGHN FOBs as they were unrequired went over like a lead-balloon with the troops but he stood by the decsions as it was likely what was best. We NEED leaders who will know what MUST be done, regardless of the popularity factor. That is the sign of a true leader.

McChrystal also has baggage, as he was involved in the Pat Tillman issue, and that has yet to be finalized to many people's satisfaction. Regardless, as Colin Powell has rejected the political path, the " Insurgent General " might be the very answer to our country's issues with putting someone in power who can deal with the " Wimps in Washington"

Gotta be a far sight better than the empty-suit who occupies the office presently. No doubt about it.

I would relish seeing a true leader that would tell the establishment that there's a new sheriff in town, and he doesn't play by the old rules, in fact, he is willing the throw the rule book out the window. In the new geo-political environement, it may be the move we need to make to keep the wolves at bay.

" Some must go to fight the Dragons" - General McChrystal understands that better than anyone else in Washington other than Senator John McCain. If we can't have McCain as POTUS, let's take a long look at McChrystal...He may be just what we need in these perilous times.

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