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Applauding Obama's appointment of James Mattis to Central Command

I think it a good move:

A four-star Marine general known equally for blunt speech, combat prowess and understanding counterinsurgency warfare will be nominated to command American forces across the Middle East, officials said Thursday.

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates described the nominee, Gen. James N. Mattis, as "one of our military's outstanding combat leaders and strategic thinkers, bringing an essential mix of experience, judgment and perspective to this important post."

If confirmed by the Senate as the top officer of the military's Central Command, General Mattis would be in charge of American military forces in a strategic area from Egypt through Pakistan, and from Central Asia past the Persian Gulf.

His area of responsibility would include Iraq and Afghanistan, but most of his focus would be on other trouble spots in the region, as each of those two conflicts have a four-star officer specifically in command.

What kinds of blunt things has the man been known to have said?

These kinds of blunt things:

  • For the mission's sake, for our country's sake, and the sake of the men who carried the Division's colors in past battles -- "who fought for life and never lost their nerve" -- carry out your mission and keep your honor clean. Demonstrate to the world there is "No Better Friend -- No Worse Enemy" than a US Marine.
    • Mattis' words in a message to the 1st Marine Division before the 2003 Iraq War as quoted in "Eve of Battle Speech" in The Weekly Standard (1 March 2003); also quoted in War Stories: Operation Iraqi Freedom (2003) by Oliver North, p. 53
  • Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.
    • One of the rules Maj. Gen. James Mattis gave his Marines to live by in Iraq, as quoted in Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq (2006) by Thomas E. Ricks; as excerpted in Armed Forces Journal (August 2006)
  • I come in peace. I didn't bring artillery. But I'm pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you f*ck with me, I'll kill you all.
    • After the invasion of Iraq -and after sending his tanks and artillery home- Mattis sent this message to the Iraqi leaders in every area his men served in, as quoted in Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq (2006) by Thomas E. Ricks; as excerpted in Armed Forces Journal (August 2006)
  • In this age, I don't care how tactically or operationally brilliant you are, if you cannot create harmony--even vicious harmony--on the battlefield based on trust across service lines, across coalition and national lines, and across civilian/military lines, you need to go home, because your leadership is obsolete. We have got to have officers who can create harmony across all those lines.
  • PowerPoint makes us stupid.

It's likely to be a long time before I tip my hat to Obama again but tip it I do here.

Well done Mr. President. 


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Comments (8)

I think it a good move:<... (Below threshold)

I think it a good move:

Then it must have been somebody else's idea. Probably Gates. Barry Lackwit wouldn't know the first thing about picking a good military commander ... and if he did, he'd deliberately pick a bad one.

While I applaud the appoint... (Below threshold)

While I applaud the appointment, I'll reserve judgment until I see if Barry backs him up.

Wouldn't surprise me if Barry later pulls him out saying "I didn't think you were actually going to KILL people."

I suspect Obama is setting ... (Below threshold)

I suspect Obama is setting up Mattis and Patraeus for a fall.

"I suspect Obama is setting... (Below threshold)
jim m:

"I suspect Obama is setting up Mattis and Petraeus for a fall."

If only because that is how barry treats everyone. He will use them to achieve whatever ends he finds helpful in Afghanistan and then he will find a way to discredit them because anyone who might gain popularity would be a threat.

It is a good pick. Lets ho... (Below threshold)
retired military:

It is a good pick. Lets hope there werent ulterior motives but that is like saying we can hope the sun wont rise tomorrow.

Here is something worth a p... (Below threshold)
Papa Ray:

Here is something worth a post.

Off Topic? Maybe but in the big picture of what has happened to the U.S. in the last thirty or so years, worth putting down here.

Anyway, something most of you won't go for, but posted here for a few that might.

Want to sabotage the liberal traitorous media, especially the lefty Hollywood idiots?

Want sound values and want to be a part of getting them out to America and the world?

Want to be a Citizen Producer of quality pro-American movies?

Go here and check it out:


It could be the best money you ever spend for your kids and grand kids. I'm poor but will forgo $10.00 bucks a month so that American ideals and beliefs can be rebuilt for our children and grand children.

Papa Ray

Here are the real questions... (Below threshold)

Here are the real questions Inquiring Minds want to know:
Did Petraeus request this successor?
Did Petraeus know who his successor would be (ignoring the immediate succession by Lt Gen Allen)?
Do these two get along or are they oil and water (or maybe better sodium and water)?

The confirmation hearings s... (Below threshold)

The confirmation hearings should be fascinating.






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