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Sat Sep 14, 2013, 04:47 PM

Pentagon in Back Seat as Kerry Leads Charge

Pentagon in Back Seat as Kerry Leads Charge
By THOM SHANKER
Published: September 13, 2013

WASHINGTON — In the weeks of sometimes bewildering debate in Washington about what to do in Syria, one truth has emerged: President Obama has transformed his relationship with the Pentagon and the military.

The civilian policy makers and generals who led Mr. Obama toward a troop escalation in Afghanistan during his first year in office, a decision that left him deeply distrustful of senior military leaders, have been replaced by a handpicked leadership that includes Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Gen. Martin E. Dempsey, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

Through battlefield experience — Mr. Hagel as an infantryman in 1967 and 1968 in Vietnam, and General Dempsey as a commander during some of the most violent years in Iraq — both men share Mr. Obama’s reluctance to use American military might overseas. A dozen years after the Pentagon under Donald H. Rumsfeld began aggressively driving national security policy, the two have wholeheartedly endorsed a more restricted Pentagon role.

...

The crisis in Syria is the most recent and most powerful example of how Mr. Obama, elected twice on a promise to disengage the United States from overseas conflicts, has moved the Pentagon to a back seat. In this case, it is Secretary of State John Kerry who is leading the charge, not the far less vocal Mr. Hagel and General Dempsey.

...

Senator John McCain, the Arizona Republican, has been the most critical. Just before the current push for an attack, prompted by what American intelligence agencies say was the deaths of 1,400 people by poison gas, Mr. McCain said General Dempsey was campaigning to avoid action by describing the risks and costs of the most extreme options for intervention. The general’s assessments “are beyond anything that any rational military thinker that I know would ever contemplate,” Mr. McCain said.

...

http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/14/us/politics/syria-crisis-underlines-pentagons-move-to-the-back-seat.html?smid=tw-share&_r=0

"It doesn't concern me in the slightest" -John McCain

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Reply Pentagon in Back Seat as Kerry Leads Charge (Original post)
Catherina Sep 2013 OP
Solly Mack Sep 2013 #1
madrchsod Sep 2013 #2
KoKo Sep 2013 #3

Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sat Sep 14, 2013, 04:59 PM

1. K&R

Thanks. Good read.

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sat Sep 14, 2013, 07:40 PM

2. let`s get something straight...

kerry does what obama wants him to do and say . obama trusts kerry to do what he is asked to do.and those generals? they know they can be fired for publicly disagreeing with any president.


the headline should read...." the pentagon takes a backseat as obama leads the charge".

i think to many forget that obama is`t another george bush

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Response to Catherina (Original post)

Sat Sep 14, 2013, 09:44 PM

3. Does this strike you as some "disinfo" pushed to NYT...that there is a

break in the administration with those advising Obama? Leaks from both sides...covering butts? Maybe third group there trying to put out info?

It's confusing as to whether Kerry is being blamed for being more aggressive in posturing for a Strike or it's both Obama and Kerry while Hagel and Dempsey are more cautious?

Hagel is talked about as the wounded war veteran...while Kerry's Vietnam experience doesn't get play.

I read the article quickly...so maybe missed nuances that are there. But, it did seem to be information "someone" wanted put out there to the NYT for some purpose.

So much disinfo out there from so many sources these days its hard to keep up with the spins. John McCain is so "off his rocker" pretending to be the President who should be there that I can't deal with him. So...I didn't watch the video 'cause he makes me feel as crazy has he seems to be!





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