8/21/12

General Dempsey misses the boat

General Martin Dempsey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, says he is 'disappointed' that former military members are mounting a campaign against Obama.

“If someone uses the uniform, whatever uniform, for partisan politics, I am disappointed because I think it does erode that bond of trust we have with the American people,” Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey said in an interview with Fox News while flying back from a trip to Afghanistan and Iraq.

Perhaps the general has not noticed, but using the uniform and wrapping oneself in the flag is common practice with politicians, and has been for some time. It gets the vet vote. While I agree completely with the general when he says the military must remain apolitical, the people campaigning against Obama are not active duty military.

“That’s how we remain our bond of trust with the American people,” Dempsey said. “People don’t want us to be another special interest group. They don’t want that. In fact I think it confuses them.”
 
I'm not sure of the 'confuses' part of that statement, but I think he is right on the money with the rest of it. But we are not talking about active duty military.  

But Scott Taylor, one of the former Navy SEALs behind the campaign, responded to Dempsey's comments in an interview Tuesday night with Fox News' Greta van Susteren, saying that they consciously excluded active-duty military because of restrictions on such political activity. This group, however, intends to speak out.

"We have our First Amendment rights," Taylor said. "We fought for them, and we're going to continue to do so."

And that too, is right on the money.

The general says:

“Is their criticism valid? I won’t comment on that,” Dempsey said onboard a C17 military aircraft en route back from the Middle East. “Is it useful? No, it’s not useful. It’s not useful to me.”

The general's going to have to get over that.

Using those stars and the position of chairman of the Joint Chiefs to gag, or threaten, or intimidate citizens is some seriously bad stuff, and is likely to blow up in the administration's faces. I wonder if the general is going to have that "Ooops, I think I just screwed the pooch!" look on his face when/if Obama tosses him under the bus with all the rest?