Gates Shuts Down Criticism From Military Leaders

Via Rowan Scarborough at Human Events.

Defense Secretary Robert Gates is consolidating his power over who can speak and what they can say. The casualty will be candor about the wars America fights.

Gates sent a memo last week ordering officers and officials not to talk to the press unless his personal staff approves. That was chilling enough.

But Gates has sent other shut-up signals that leave the impression he wants his voice, and his message alone, to represent the Pentagon.

The most onerous was a far-reaching gag-order he had top and mid-level officials sign during internal deliberations on the 2010 defense budget. With the threat of firings hanging over their heads, it essentially shut up the world’s largest office building.

……Republicans, including Rep. Randy Forbes of Virginia, saw the silencing as a way for Gates to restrict information to Congress.

“Can I expect a candid answer from a senior military official when I ask them about the process used to establish priorities, either now or after the president’s detailed budget is released to the public?” Forbes and five other GOPers asked Gates in a letter. “Members of Congress deserve candid answers from senior military officers that are not suppressed or censored — either directly, or implicitly via culture of regulations that muzzle their independent professional judgment.”

As long as that candid opnion doesn’t criticize THE ONE.

……Four four-star generals have been fired on his watch.

He fired Gen. T. Michael Moseley, the Air Force chief of staff, supposedly for weak controls over the nuclear arsenal. But Moseley allies suspect it was because the fighter pilot had emerged as the most outspoken Joint Chiefs members, one who was willing to push-back against Gates’ air-power vision which included scuttling production of the vaunted F-22 stealth fighter.

Gates fired Marine Corps Gen. Peter Pace, a big proponent of the war on terror and traditional values, by not giving him the customary second two-year term as Joint Chiefs chairman.

He fired Gen. David McKiernan, the top commander in Afghanistan, then saw his replacement, Gen. Stanley McChrystal, fired by President Obama for indiscreet remarks to Rolling Stone.

……This can only have a chilling effect on the flow of information from source to reporter to the public. Why would an Army two-star division commander, for example, bother with a lot of face time with reporters knowing he risks the wrath of Gates by saying something the defense secretary thinks is “out of proper context,” or “uniformed.”

This is the same Gates who shut down another flow of information from the Pentagon to Americans. Because the New York Times did not like the process, Gates ended the periodic Pentagon briefings for retired officers who go on TV or on the radio to explain the war on terror.

Two independent investigations—one by the Pentagon inspector general, the other by the Government Accountability Office (GAO)—found the program did not violate any laws or rules.

Wanna bet this latest crackdown on candor came right from Obama?

Military personnel are trained to go after the enemy and get the job done. They don’t operate very well under the half-assed, ham-strung policies of a craven assclown who has no intention of winning the war against Islamic aggression and terrorism.

Gates has fired four Generals so far. Under the current conditions, General Petraeus will probably be the fifth.

Obama at odds with Petraeus doctrine on ‘Islam’

Seems the good warrior General Petreaus has a different take on this war; he thinks we should win it.

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