This is what happens when we lose faith in the competency and motivations of the commander-in-chief.
It’s been almost 40 years since a general resigned to protest a feckless foreign policy. That was Major General Jack Singlaub, who voluntarily laid his stars on the table in defiance of President Jimmy Carter’s plan to withdraw U.S. forces from Korea.
However, in an op-ed for Breitbart, retired Lt. General Jerry Boykin says “generals should resign to protest Obama’s use of the military.” An original Delta Force member and former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence, Boykin points out only 26% of the military community approves of the job performance of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel. Yet instead of singularly blaming the culprit – President Obama – for the military’s low morale, Boykin also takes aim at his collaborators.
Boykin bluntly writes:
So what about the current military leadership? Should some of them put their stars on the table and resign in protest of the ongoing deterioration of our military? Or how about the abuse of our men and women in uniform? Sending up to 4,000 service members to Liberia to fight Ebola is abuse. Consider that America has been at war for 13 years and our military has an all-time high suicide rate, out of control PTSD, and family disintegration at unprecedented levels. Now America will send these young men and women — who are not adequately trained to fight Ebola — on something that is NOT a military mission in the first place.
In addition, the Obama administration has not announced a serious and coherent strategy to destroy ISIS. It is time for stars on the table, without delay. What military professional wants to preside over the demise of America’s Armed Forces? One would assume that the answer to that would be none. Yet that is exactly what is happening. The passiveness of the current Joint Chiefs of Staff is giving support to the destruction of America’s war fighting capabilities.
There’s no easy way to say this, but Boykin is essentially questioning the honor of those who are enabling Obama’s fraudulent foreign policy by carrying out his foolish plans. No chief executive, no matter how authoritarian, can unilaterally carry out his own edicts. He needs a bureaucratic infrastructure to implement his agenda. Someone willing to just follow orders, if you will.
Boykin is openly questioning why Pentagon brass seem so willing to carry out an agenda he sees as dismantling the very military they’ve given their life’s service to. This is some tough love, for sure, which Boykin later puts it even more directly:
It is past time for some resignations to protest the Obama administration’s damaging policies. The oath that each military member takes is to “Support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic.” This is a serious and sacred oath and when you know that a policy is just plain wrong, then you are obligated by that oath to do something; that something is for military leaders to say to the President of the United States, “I can no longer support your ill-advised and reckless policies that I regard as threats to national security and the welfare of our men and women in uniform.”
So is Boykin right, or is he taking his criticism too far? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section below.
Regardless of what you think of Boykin’s no-holds-barred assessment, there’s no denying his opinion, given his impeccable military resume, should not be taken lightly. The mere fact a respected military figure is willing to discuss such unprecedented possibilities publicly like this is disturbing enough. For Boykin would not have casually chosen to go public with such pointed criticism unless he was convinced desperate times called for desperate measures.
This entire conversation is a by-product of having leadership who isn’t primarily motivated by defending the Constitution, and promoting American Exceptionalism. When leaders don’t lead, or lead wrongly, they put the onus on their subordinates to do their duty for them.
That’s easier said than done. There is always a price to pay for such acts of civil disobedience or peaceful defiance, which is why it’s only those with extraordinary courage of conviction who are willing to do them.
(Steve Deace is a nationally-syndicated talk show host and also the author of the new book “Rules for Patriots: How Conservatives Can Win Again.” You can “like” him on Facebook or follow him on Twitter @SteveDeaceShow.)