Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Good for McChrystal!

Was it rude?...yes. Did it violate military etiquette?...yes. Was it good for his career?...I doubt it, but the guy is already a four-star General. Was he being stupid?...I don't think so. Did he not know what the impact of those remarks would be?...I think he did know.

There is no question that the civilian government should have control over the military. Does that mean that Generals and their staffs should never publicly disagree with the President or other members of the Administration? No, in my opinion, it doesn't mean that at all. I know it's the politically correct thing to do, but I think We the People have a right to know what the Generals who are prosecuting the war think about the civilians who are in control.

According to the reporter who broke the story, McChrystal and his staff have been extremely frustrated with the Obama Administration for quite some time. In my view, it's too bad that Westmoreland didn't speak up back in the Vietnam days. I believe that this situation in Afghanistan is similar to the one in Vietnam back when. In both cases, I don't think the Oligarchy that rules this country wants (or wanted, in 'Nam) to win the war. What they want is perpetual war. [See my previous post immediately below this one.]

I don't support either war that we're engaged in currently...the troops, yes, but not the wars. Obviously, then, I didn't support the "surge" in Afghanistan requested by McChrystal. [Surge---that's government-speak for expanding the war.] Nevertheless, I see his point of view. As McNamara once pointed out, historically it has taken a ratio of ten conventional troops to one guerilla to win an insurgency-type war. By the time McNamara realized that he had to count North Vietnamese Regulars (as well as Viet Cong) in that ratio, it was too late. [That would have meant one million American combat troops in 'Nam.] If we accept that historical ratio, in McChrystal's case that means
250,000 American/Allied troops in Afghanistan. He won't ever get that. The main reason he won't is not because it would be politically unpopular; rather, it is because the Corporatocracy/Oligarchy doesn't want a resolution in Afghanistan for awhile. In my opinion, that's because the American public hasn't yet been conditioned enough to accept our invasion of the next country, whichever one that happens to be.

No-Drama Obama (the Media gave him that tag, not me) easily could prolong the Afghan War by firing McChrystal. Actually, though, it doesn't much matter whether he does or not, because according to the historical ratio mentioned above, whoever leads the troops does not have enough of them to bring about a favorable resolution anyway. [Thank God...more troops would mean more blood and treasure expended in vain.] The fact is, we need to get out of both Iraq and Afghanistan ASAP. Even if we "stabilize" both countries, what happens when we leave? Major combat (by Americans) supposedly is over in Iraq and the country still is not stable. We can't stay in these countries forever, but that seems to be the plan.

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