It’s not every day that a general-grade officer takes the commander in chief to task for decisions he makes that put the nation’s security in peril.
Yet, that is what has happened with two superb military officers. They both have combat experience. They both have commanded many thousands of men and women. They both are true-blue American heroes.
Retired Admiral William McRaven, the former special operations commanding officer, has penned a New York Times essay in which he declares that Donald Trump is putting our democracy “in jeopardy.” He cannot fathom that the president sidles up to dictators and trashes our allies and our alliances that have been vital to keeping the world safe from tyrants. McRaven, under whose command our military was able to kill Osama bin Laden, has laid it on the line with regard to Donald Trump.
Retired Marine Gen. James Mattis, who served as defense secretary in the Trump administration, resigned because the president doesn’t know what he is doing with regard to the military and his handling of foreign policy. Trump selected Mattis to lead the Pentagon, calling him at the time of his hiring a first-rate commanding officer; now he refers to Mattis as an “overrated general.”
They aren’t alone in expressing their dismay and disgust at the way the president conducts foreign and military policy. Retired Army Gen. Barry McCaffrey, the former head of Central Command who led troops during the Persian Gulf War — and served with valor and heroism during the Vietnam War — has been a fervent critic of the president.
These are serious men with serious views about the commander in chief. They are patriots. They served heroically. They faced our enemies on the battlefield. These men deserve to be heard.