Breaking Defense | Is Congress Too Ignorant Of The Military?

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Congress - Military (200x200)What’s Eating Bill McRaven: Is Congress Too Ignorant Of The Military?

July 7, 2016

The US military is still at war but Washington is not. The resulting tensions are eroding the fundamental compact between America’s warrior and political classes.

The recent op-ed by retired Adm. William McRaven, former head of Special Operations Command and the man who led the strike against Osama Bin Laden, might have caused a national furor in more normal times.

McRaven had aimed a withering broadside of criticism at Capitol Hill. He accused lawmakers of cynically scuttling the career of a trusted former subordinate; routinely abusing and disrespecting senior military leaders to advance their political agendas; and undermining command authority and good order and discipline in military ranks through undue pressure and political correctness.

[…]

McRaven specifically took issue with a group of senators who forced Rear Adm. Brian Losey, commander of the Navy’s SEAL Teams, into premature retirement. A Pentagon Inspector General’s investigation concluded that several years ago Losey retaliated against whistleblowers on his staff who may, or may not, have questioned his travel expenditures. The Navy disagreed and wanted to promote Losey. Describing the IG investigation as a “miscarriage of justice,” McRaven blasted lawmakers for torching Losey’s career and reputation. McRaven pointedly noted that Losey was a veteran of numerous combat deployments to both Afghanistan and Iraq, and had “sacrificed more for this country than most members on Capitol Hill.”

[…]

If McRaven had left it there, his criticisms might have been dismissed as a former commander’s overzealous defense of a subordinate. Instead he went on to frame the case as part of a more general erosion in the core compact between civilian and military leaders.

[…]

“Over the past decade, I have seen a disturbing trend in how politicians abuse and denigrate military leadership…to advance their political goals, (Read More)

 

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