Brass Doorknobs

Brass Doorknob: Serving New Masters

If you’ve ever served in the military, you’ve probably encountered the sort of officer who winds up earning disdain from those under his command. It generally happens, if they weren’t this way from the outset, when they get close to making General. Other times, it happens when they wind up in staff positions in the Pentagon, and more frequently, when they come to be the Chief of Staff in their respective branches.  Ambition being what it is, one of the human frailties that often surfaces is the desire to maintain one’s position at any cost.  When you’re the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, you answer to the President. Yes, there’s a civilian Secretary of Defense, but that position also serves at the pleasure of the President.  Sometimes, with changes in administrations, Generals will swivel ideologically, like a doorknob, particularly if the opposing party has taken power.  In order to survive, they’ll do whatever their new masters demand, because their careers are more important to them than is the defense of the nation.  On Wednesday, current Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, General Mark Milley, testified before the House of Representatives.  To say his testimony was disgusting is to understate the matter.  General Milley is a bit older than I, but chances are he was a young Lieutenant when I was a young Private.  He was probably a Captain around the time I became a Corporal, and perhaps a Major by the time I was a Sergeant.  My point to you is that a man of his age and experience ought to know better, and his lengthy service ought to have afforded him the opportunity to learn all he needed to know, and fortified his integrity sufficiently to have been able to withstand whatever pressures he is currently enduring.  Instead, on Wednesday, his testimony before the US House of Representatives indicated that not only is he a “Brass Doorknob,” but he’s also an ignoramus.

Here’s a clip of the testimony, courtesy of the DailyCaller via Rumble:

His testimony indicated that he thinks the Army is beset by “White Rage.” I can’t imagine what’s creating such a thing, unless it’s the Army’s own policies. For decades, the Army has bent over backwards to accommodate people of all races; even during the years of my service in the 1980s, the Army used naked quotas in promotions, though they were hidden behind the machinations of the Department of the Army.  Later, these quotas came to encompass also female soldiers, and I suspect by now, there’s nary a subset of humans serving in the Army who isn’t afforded some sort of preferential treatment, unless they’re a straight, white male.  Those sorts of policies in an environment that should value solely the matters of service performance meeting or exceeding standards, and similar considerations of solely military importance, are almost certain to create friction once they become plainly visible.  I can’t speak to the post-Cold War Army from personal experience, but I can relate the impressions of others who’ve served since, and one of the things that becomes clear is that the Army no longer exists primarily to defend the nation or win its wars.  Instead, many soldiers now refer to it as the “Big Green Welfare Machine,” and it’s not an insignificant problem.  Many service-members quietly speak of the “woke” culture, quietly because they daren’t say so publicly, and this sentiment is expressed by men and women, be they black, Hispanic, Caucasian, or other.

Obviously, I can’t lay thirty years of history at the feet of General Milley, but there are things the General said that cause me serious heartburn. For instance, he claimed that the constitution says that African-Americans were counted as only “3/4ths” of a human. This is wrong on several counts. In the first place, the number in the constitution is 3/5ths. This number applied to all slaves – not “African-Americans,” and yes, there were plenty of people in the early United States who were slaves, but not of African heritage.  The purpose of the 3/5ths number was for the counting of heads in the census, for the sake of apportioning representation among the States. The fractional number was put forth by abolitionists, who wanted to get rid of slavery all together.  They wanted to use this in part as an inducement to end slavery in the slave states, by penalizing those states in Congressional representation. In effect, the men who put this clause in place did so with the intention of ending slavery, or at the very least, penalizing states for it. Slave states would necessarily have lesser representation in Congress because only free people counted as a whole person.  The fact that Milley doesn’t understand this means he doesn’t even understand the Constitution he’s sworn to defend, and that is beyond troubling. The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff has demonstrated that he’s ignorant of the Constitution, and therefore, doesn’t even understand that the criticism of it that he implied by his statement is historically inaccurate and completely false.

Another remark he made seemed to have been aimed at the so-called “insurrectionists” of January 6th. It was his contention that he didn’t understand what would motivate people to attack the Capitol with the intention of overthrowing the constitution.  To my knowledge, no person involved at the Capitol, at least not the sincere MAGA folk there, had any intention of overthrowing the constitution. Instead, from my understanding, it was their intention to see to it that it was upheld.  Again, either Milley is simply ignorant, or he’s simply serving the new masters.  Either way, he’s unfit for command, but I’m sure those characteristics make him perfect for service in the Biden administration.

The other thing Milley does is to claim victimhood.  If you’ll notice, he plays the same game as others, like Fauci: “If you attack me, you’re attacking the institution.” Fauci claimed to attack him was to attack science.  Milley claims that to attack him is to attack the whole of the military, including general officers, non-commissioned officers, and enlisted.  This sort of package-deal victimhood nonsense doesn’t work with me, and nobody else should fall for it. In fact, when I see it, I take it as the calling-card of a charlatan.  This conduct from the nation’s highest-ranking military official is despicable.  He ought to be ashamed, and if he had any integrity at all, he’d tender his resignation now.  He has no business leading our armed services.  Not now. Not tomorrow, and at no time in the future.

If ever a Republican makes it into the White House again, that President must completely de-construct the military chain of command.  The eight years of Obama clearly left a scar on the services, and the Pentagon is populated by people who may serve a different master all together.  I’m sure there are good people there, as almost no place is uniformly and universally corrupt, but the fact that we have senior military leaders who are either completely ignorant or entirely lacking in integrity is a serious national crisis of leadership.  Former President Trump recently remarked that if the senior military leaders believed, as Joe Biden had asserted, that the greatest threat to the US is Climate change, that they all need to be fired.  I hope this turns out to have been a foreshadowing of things to come, because from what we saw of General Milley on Wednesday, and the Chief of Naval Operations last week, one can assuredly say that all of them need to go.

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2 Responses to Brass Doorknobs

  1. the unit says:

    Didn’t we see the start when top brass wanted to respond to Benghazi and were relieved of duty?