Friday, December 2, 2016

The philosophy of James Mattis: Gen. James N. Mattis - Google Search

"But the retired general, a lifelong bachelor who has said that he does not own a television and has often been referred to as a “warrior monk,” is also famous for his extensive collection of books on military history. “Thanks to my reading, I have never been caught flat-footed by any situation,” he wrote a colleague in 2003. “It doesn’t give me all the answers, but it lights what is often a dark path ahead.”... 
Mr. McCain said in a statement that General Mattis was “without a doubt one of the finest military officers of his generation and an extraordinary leader who inspires a rare and special admiration of his troops.” He added, “America will be fortunate to have General Mattis in its service once again.”

Gen. James N. Mattis - Google Search

1 Share
Story image for Gen. James N. Mattis from Washington Post

Trump picks retired Marine GenJames Mattis for secretary of defense

Washington Post-11 hours ago
President-elect Donald Trump said Thursday he has chosen retired Marine GenJames N. Mattis, who has said that responding to “political ...

The philosophy of James Mattis

1 Share
Retired Marine Gen. James N. Mattis is known as “Chaos,” “Warrior Monk” and “Mad Dog.” The names reflect his blunt way of speaking — and his ability to cut through bullsh–t to get results. A man whom many would like to see run for president himself, he is Donald Trump’s expected pick for secretary of defense.
Mattis, who retired with four stars in 2013, met with Trump as a candidate on the short list to direct the Defense Department. Afterward, the president-elect called the 66-year-old “impressive” in a tweet.
The general led Task Force 58 into Afghanistan in 2001 — the first large U.S. ground force to enter the nation, as a one-star general based at Camp Pendleton.
Mattis went on to lead San Diego County Marines in the initial invasion of Iraq in 2003 and the bloody Fallujah campaign of 2004. He later had a hand in writing the counterinsurgency doctrine that helped turn around the deadly Al Anbar district after 2006 with Army Gen. David Petraeus — who is also being considered for a post in the new administration.
The Marine icon — a legend, even — is known to speak truth to power, and has a few thoughts on how to make America great again.

America is not an island

America now is built on the ideology of the post-WWII generation, meaning the institutions of this country, and its attitudes toward the rest of world, revolve around one idea: the world works best when countries work together to stop global threats.
“The constructed order reflected the wisdom of those who recognized no nation lived as an island and we needed new ways to deal with challenges that for better or worse impacted all nations,” Mattis told Congress in 2015. “Like it or not, today we are part of this larger world and must carry out our part… The international order built on the state system is not self-sustaining.”

Prioritize threats accurately

Who exactly is America fighting? Why? What exactly is America fighting, ideology-wise? These questions are unclear — and they need to be answered in order to best allocate resources, manpower and funding under the Trump administration.
“Murky or quixotic political end states can condemn us to entering wars we don’t know how to end,” Mattis says.
He called on the intelligence committee to “delineate and provide an initial prioritization” of all current threats to the U.S. in order to solve these questions, including “rigorously defining the problems” and creating a “more intelligent and focused use of resources.”
The biggest physical threat Mattis identifies is the Middle East as a whole, where he notes “our influence is at its lowest point in four decades.”
Because our influence is waning, Mattis urges the American military to take a relaxed leadership position where we “recognize that regional counterweights like Egypt, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and the rest of the Gulf Cooperation Council can reinforce us if they understand our policies and if we clarify our foreign policy goals beyond Iran’s nuclear weapons program.”
The biggest ideological threat Mattis identifies is defining Islam vs jihadists.
“Violent terrorists cannot be permitted to take refuge behind false religious garb and leave us unwilling to define this threat with the clarity it deserves.” he states. That is a tall order for an issue that is political to its core in the post-9/11 era.
Yet, he offers a few questions that will help the administration clarify its dealings: “Is political Islam in our best interest? If not what is our policy to support the countervailing forces?”

Stop cutting military budgets and refocus resources

The biggest challenge to the U.S. military isn’t ISIS, according to Mattis: it’s sequestration. Sequestration, or “spending limits on the federal government,” per The Hill, “mandates $1.2 trillion in cuts across federal agencies to include $500 million to the military over the next decade,” as part of the 2011 Budget Control Act.
Gen. Mattis is not a fan — but his answer isn’t to bulk the military back up.
“With less military available, we must reduce our appetite for using it,” he explains. “Tiered readiness with a smaller force must be closely scrutinized to ensure we aren’t merely hollowing out the force.”
He continues with specific applications for the Army, Air Force, and Navy:
“With the cutbacks to the Army and Air Force and fewer forces around the world, military aspects of our strategy will inevitably become more naval in character… Are the Navy and our expeditionary forces receiving the support they need in a world where America’s naval role is more pronounced because we have fewer forces posted overseas?”
Most shocking of all, Mattis advises the Trump administration to do that without increasing the national debt.
“If we refuse to reduce our debt or pay down our deficit, what is the impact on national security for future generations who will inherit this irresponsible debt and the taxes to service it?” Mattis said. “No nation in history has maintained its military power while failing to keep its fiscal house in order.”


Read the whole story

· · · ·

Gen. James N. Mattis - Google Search

"A now-famous quote has Mattis, then the senior marine in the volatile Iraqi province of Anbar, informing a local interlocutor: “I come in peace. I didn’t bring artillery. But I’m pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: if you fuck with me, I’ll kill you all.”

“The guy ... understands the big picture. He’s an internationalist and he understands engagement. He also understands the judicious use of military power. He’s not looking for a fight but he’ll always finish the fight,” he said.

While Trump has signaled a warmth to Vladimir Putin, Mattis has criticized “the unfortunate and dangerous mode the Russian leadership has slipped into”, warning Nato allies against accommodating “Russian violations of international law”.

For Secretary of Defense, another LGBT hostile Trump pick

1 Share
BY STAFF  |  Continuing his string of LGBT hostile Cabinet picks, Donald Trump has tapped James Mattis for Secretary of Defense.
Mattis, in August of 2016, said that President Obama was trying to foist “social change” on the military with what Mattis views as the President’s campaign to accept gay and transgender troops who serve openly in the military.
He has repeatedly said that efforts to be inclusive of LGBT soldiers has weakened the military.
In a book published in August 2016,  Warriors & Citizens: American Views of Our Military, Mattis and his co-author Kori N. Schake, wrote about a “progressive agenda” that seeks to impose “social change” on the military. “We fear that an uninformed public is permitting political leaders to impose an accretion of social conventions that are diminishing the combat power of our military,” Mattis and Schake wrote.
Mattis argues that the desire of some soldiers (57 percent he claims) to object to the presence of LGBT soldiers, even if it brings discredit on the military, is an example of the complexities the military must allow.
The argument echoes the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” debates of the 1990s.
His arguments have been used by the Military Religious Freedoms Foundation, a group that seeks similar carve outs on LGBT issues sought by Mike Pence’s Religious Freedom Act. The group claims their religious right to discriminate is violated by the military’s requirement to accept LGBT soldiers.  There is no evidence General Mattis has any affiliation with this group.
Washington Post writer Josh Rogin recently quoted Mattis as having something of a sense of humor about Don’t Ask, Don’t tell:  “When Gen. Abrial arrived to relieve me as the supreme commander, only don’t ask, don’t tell kept me from hugging and kissing him,” the General allegedly joked.
Mattis was fired by President Barack Obama in 2013. The President felt the General was, according to The New York Times, “too hawkish on Iran.” Other sources online said that he was fired for being out of step with the administrations progressive policies.
Mattis has also questioned whether women are suited for what he called the “intimate killing” of close combat, and whether male commanders would balk at sending women into such situations.
Of Post Traumatic Stress Disorders, “There’s no room for woe-is-me, for self-pity, or for cynicism” in the military, Mattis said. “Further, there is no room for military people, including our veterans, to see themselves as victims even if so many of our countrymen are prone to relish that role. In the military, we make choices. We’re not victims.”
General Mattis led a Marine division to Baghdad during the 2003 invasion of Iraq.