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What I now ask of you is military success - I will risk the dictatorship

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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 07:44 PM
Original message
What I now ask of you is military success - I will risk the dictatorship
Edited on Mon Oct-09-06 07:46 PM by ddeclue
What I now ask of you is military success, and I will risk the dictatorship.

Bob Woodward of Watergate investigation fame reported in the Washington Post on Sunday that on May 1st, 2006, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld issued a secret memo entitled Illustrative new 21st Century Institutions and Approaches.

In a key paragraph of that six-page memo, Secretary Rumsfeld made the following statement:

It is time to consider a new Hoover Commission to recommend ways to reorganize both the executive and legislative branches, to put us on a more appropriate path for the 21st century. Only a broad, fundamental reorganization is likely to enable federal departments and agencies to function with the speed and agility the times demand. The charge of incompetence against the U.S. government should be easy to rebut if the American people understand the extent to which the current system of government makes competence next to impossible.

In short, Secretary Rumsfeld believes that the failings of the Defense Department in the war on terror are not his fault as secretary but rather are structural in nature and require ominous sounding fundamental changes not only to the executive branch of our Federal Government but also the legislative branch which is composed of the United States Senate and the United States Congress. More ominous still is the fact that the structure and powers of both branches, which Secretary Rumsfeld seeks to change, are strictly defined by the United States Constitution.

In light of the Bush Administrations perpetual efforts to expand and consolidate all power within the executive branch, one can only assume that the Secretary is seeking that yet more unchecked power be bestowed upon the President and himself.

Upon reading Rumsfelds memo, I was immediately reminded of another memo this one written during the Civil War. This memo was sent from President Lincoln to Major General Joseph Hooker on January 28th, 1863.

In it, Lincoln wrote the following:

I have heard, in such a way as to believe it, of your recently saying that both the Army and the Government needed a dictator. Of course, it was not for this, but in spite of it, that I have given you the command. Only those generals who gain successes can set up dictators. What I now ask of you is military success, and I will risk the dictatorship.

Lincolns words of wisdom ring as true in todays war on terror as they did in the much more serious crisis he faced - the Civil War.

We do not need dictators we need military success.

If Secretary Rumsfeld doesnt understand this, then its time for him to resign.

by

Douglas J. De Clue
Orlando, FL
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bigtree Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 07:49 PM
Response to Original message
1. superb!
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 07:59 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Thanks, I sent it to the local paper but I doubt they will print..
Doug D.
Orlando, FL
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cui bono Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 08:03 PM
Response to Original message
3. Unbelievable. Do you have a link to the WaPo story? n/t
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 08:29 PM
Response to Reply #3
4. The World According to Rummy, Sunday October 8th 2006
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 09:46 PM
Response to Reply #4
7. nt
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PurgedVoter Donating Member (753 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 08:32 PM
Response to Original message
5. K&R
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 09:03 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. thanks
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filer Donating Member (444 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:29 PM
Response to Original message
8. Considering what followed that memo,
the Federal's disaster at Chancellorsville, it seems Lincoln had little to worry about Hooker's careless words.
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 10:38 PM
Response to Reply #8
9. True..you are someone who knows some history...
Lincoln went through a lot of egomaniac generals who wanted his job until he found some good ones in Grant, Sherman and Sheridan.

The Civil War was so much more devastating and serious than the so-called "war on terror" yet no one seems to appreciate this fact.
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 11:21 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. It's actually an apt comparison - both Hooker and Rumsfeld are bumblers
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Oct-09-06 11:15 PM
Response to Original message
10. Typo..it was January 26th, 1863..sorry..
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mom cat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 05:12 AM
Response to Original message
12. You nailed it! K&R!
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BlueEyedSon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 06:42 AM
Response to Original message
13. Why do they hate America?
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1932 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 07:09 AM
Response to Original message
14. These are exactly the attitudes Republicans and some Democrats begged of
Edited on Tue Oct-10-06 07:10 AM by 1932
FDR in January 1933. It would have been the end of democracy. FDR's instict that MORE democracy would solve America's problems and that a dictatorship would not is the only reason that we are still America today. I can't believe that we have to fight this battle again. I guess if your public schools suck and if most people who were alive then are now dead, you forget the lessons of history. Anyone who's interested, should read Alter's recent book on FDR. It's about the first 100 days of the administation and is organized around precisely the ideas Rumsfield is talking about.
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 07:49 AM
Response to Reply #14
17. Great Presidents like FDR and Lincoln get it..
Of course * doesn't...

Doug D.
Orlando, FL
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endarkenment Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 01:42 PM
Response to Reply #17
19. In *'s defense here
FDR and Lincoln were fighting enemies with organized regular armies in a traditional military conflict. That criminal idiot in the white house, although he is too dim to understand this, is not fighting this sort of war. In fact it isn't a war at all, other than the little wars we fought while taking over Afghanistan and Iraq. The Holy War On Terror is a fiction invented to justify the crap they have indulged in over the last five years.

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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 02:04 PM
Response to Reply #19
20. FDR yes ... Lincoln yes and no...
The Civil War was both a traditional war fought by traditional armies and also a "terror" or insurgent war..

All Civil Wars are..it's too easy to cross "behind the lines" and blend in...

Ever hear of Quantrill's Raiders or of the Great Locomotive chase?


Doug D.
Orlando, FL
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GeorgeGist Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 07:45 AM
Response to Original message
15. We need neither....
Doug. 'We do not need dictators we need military success. .
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 07:48 AM
Response to Reply #15
16. That's just plain stupid..
I'm not saying that we need to conquer Iraq...you don't understand my point.

We DO need to be succesful in defending this country from attacks such as 9/11 however.

Doug D.
Orlando, FL
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endarkenment Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 01:39 PM
Response to Reply #16
18. Well then your point is a bit obscure.
Our military efforts are currently the occupation after conquest of Afghanistan and Iraq, neither of which is going well. Excuse the poster for not understanding that you didn't mean those military efforts.

What exactly do you think is the military option or plan of action that will defend us from all attacks such as the one on 9-11? I do not believe that there is a reasonable military option that will provide such a defense.

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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 02:11 PM
Response to Reply #18
21. We have a purpose in Afghanistan - we do not in Iraq...
That purpose isn't to occupy Afghanistan, it's to hunt down al Qaeda.

Iraq is obviously about the oil.

Yet as Clinton pointed out in his interview on Fox, Bush thinks that al Qaeda and Osama are only 1/7th as important as Iraq.

This kind of war can't be won by occupation. It's more about good intelligence, special forces, and law enforcement and by making friends rather than enemies.

Doug D.
Orlando, FL

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endarkenment Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 03:53 PM
Response to Reply #21
22. We don't have a purpose in Afghanistan and that is obvious.
We stopped most efforts to hunt down al qaeda shortly after toppling the taliban regime and installing our guys. What exactly is our purpose these days? By all accounts I've read, we've pretty much failed there if our goal was to establish a legitimate central authority in Kabul and restart Afghanistan on the way back from failed state status. Instead we have another missionless occupation with no legitimate goals and no end in sight, increasingly viewed as a hostile occupying force by the people of Afghanistan.

I initially supported the attack against the Taliban regime, and I now view my support as deluded by my assumption of good intentions by the Bush administration. They didn't have any good intentions and most likely viewed the operation as a small piece of their global strategy to insert our military forces throughout central asia, to surround Iran, and to control the oil supply routes that will transport gas and oil out of resource rich central asia and to whichever great power has more to say about it.
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 04:07 PM
Response to Reply #22
23. Just because BUSH isn't doing what he is supposed to do in
Afghanistan doesn't mean that SOMEONE shouldn't be.

Osama bin Laden is a real threat to this country but he isn't dealing with it.


Doug D.
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endarkenment Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Oct-10-06 04:39 PM
Response to Reply #23
24. "Osama bin Laden is a real threat to this country"
Another widely accepted statement that I think is silly. al Qaeda is a nuisance, a major nuisance, but not a real threat.

Yes 9-11 was a disaster, but stepping back a bit, in ten years of their war against the USA, al qaeda has managed to conduct one good hit that knocked down a few buildings and killed 3,000 or so people. This was not exactly an existential threat to our nation.

Consider the frequently compared event of pearl harbor - now that was an existential threat. The Japanese Navy was out to strike a death blow to our pacific fleet and came very close to doing just that.

Consider the German airwar against England early in WWII - compare that real threat to what al qaeda is capable of.

I don't see how one can really sustain the case for 'al qaeda is a real threat to our country', unless you mean something quite different by 'real threat' than 'a danger to our continued existence as an independent nation'.


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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-11-06 04:26 PM
Response to Reply #24
25. There are degrees of threat...
al Qaeda is not the national equivalent of a "hangnail" but I don't think it's a danger to our continued existence either. It's somewhere in between and taking out al Qaeda and Osama is still something that ought to have already been done and ought to always be on our plate until it's done given 9/11 - if for no other reason than to say that attacks on the United States will not go unpunished.



Doug D.
Orlando, FL
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ddeclue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Oct-11-06 04:26 PM
Response to Reply #24
26. There are degrees of threat...
al Qaeda is not the national equivalent of a "hangnail" but I don't think it's a danger to our continued existence either. It's somewhere in between and taking out al Qaeda and Osama is still something that ought to have already been done and ought to always be on our plate until it's done given 9/11 - if for no other reason than to say that attacks on the United States will not go unpunished.



Doug D.
Orlando, FL
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