Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Two Resignations: One with Honor, One with None

It's not everyday that the Governor of the State of New York and the Commander of the United States Central Command resign their respective positions within about 24 hours of each other.

Little need be said about the New York guy, other than he was exposed as a conscienceless hypocrite who prosecuted people as the state's Attorney General, ruining their lives in the process, while he himself was committing the very crimes of which he charged the defendants. The vileness of this man leaves one breathless.

The other resignation, of Admiral William J. (Fox) Fallon, is much more interesting. As stated, he was serving as Commander of Centcom during a time when a war was (and still is) being waged within the boundaries of his command.

Numerous press accounts over the past several months made it clear that Adm. Fallon had serious doubts about both the tactical and strategic approaches of the civilian leadership regarding the war in Iraq and the US relationship toward Iran. Surprisingly, it was the serviceman with 40 years in the Navy, Falon, who was the "dove;' the civilian leadership, with virtually zero armed forces service among them, were the "hawks."

The US military is clearly subordinate to and takes its marching orders from the civilian leadership, period. The President holds the rank of Commander-in-Chief. And civilian authority over the military is inculcating into the training of all who serve as officers in uniform. Indirectly, the Admiral and the President were butting heads. In that contest, the Admiral can only lose, which he did.

But will the departure of such a high-ranking military commander prove to be the straw that breaks the camels back regarding the credibility of the current administration with both the Pentagon and the American public regarding the patent fiasco referred to, erroneously I believe, as the Iraq War? Will others in uniform atop the military structure become more public with their doubts about the efficacy of the policies thus far dictated by the duly elected civilian authorities? Will more resignations follow? Could Fallon's departure finally mark the beginning of the end of the Iraq misadventure?

The subordination of the military to the elected civilian leadership is one of the foundations of our freedoms; the country is not in danger of a military coup by a flock of doves. But it certainly would be ironic if the Armed Forces were at the center of the movement to cease and desist from a set of policies that has proven itself to be more destructive to ourselves rather than our enemies.

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