A political party cannot be all things to all people. It must represent certain fundamental beliefs which must not be compromised to political expediency or simply to swell its numbers. — Ronald Reagan

Ammunition? What Ammunition?

August 21, 2012   ·   By   ·   0 Comments

ammunition“War is much too serious a thing to be left to military men.” So said French Prime Minister Aristide Briand to English Prime Minister Lloyd George during the First World War. Is a possible corollary to this “maxim” that: “Ammunition Purchases by a Federal Agency are too serious a thing to be left to Federal Government Cabinet Civilians?”

Many of you have inquired about the recent humongous ammunition purchase orders by the NOAA Weather service. The news cycle has run its course and the mainstream media [MSM] apparently have no worries about any action taken by this Obama government. The MSM refuses to cover the outrageous actions of the Attorney General Eric Holder Justice Department during “Operation Fast and Furious.” So why would one expect them to cover something like this ammunition order in the NOAA? The MSM and the Obama government have a demonstrated pattern here of cooperative behaviors.

Well, here is another hard-hitting perspective. This time it is by a decorated, retired, Army Two-Star, Major General Jerry Curry, who grasps the over-arching concept and asks the right questions.

“Oh no! What an outrage! A retired military officer should stay out of the political process!” the Liberal Progressives cry out in a reflexive anti-military outburst. It is the sum of all their fears! To most of them, the military officer is a watch dog kept on a chain to be whipped, beaten and kept out of sight until he serves their needs.

There are many who think that retired military officers should simply retire to the farm, enjoy their retirement, remain silent, write a Memoir perhaps, and let the politicians run amok over our National Security and the Constitution. Charles Lane, a senior reporter from the Washington Post, stated as much on Fox News Channel [Bret Baier's Panel segment] last week. I was infuriated. Should we be disenfranchised too? [Oh yes, I forgot, Attorney General Holder recently tried to do that very thing with absentee military voters stationed overseas.]

Let’s think “outside of the box” that has been constructed over the last 50 years by the statists. The big government statists apparently think that it is entirely appropriate for retired military officers to remain silent on Constitutional Issues involving military matters. Of course, this is nonsense. military officers should not, and must not, check their brains at the door when serving any President. Presidents should regularly entertain constructive give-and-take advice and counsel of their military Leaders on related matters. So what is going on here? I cannot imagine any member of the JCS summarily approving this ammunition purchase without posing serious questions. The American public deserves a transparent explanation.

Retired military officers … and for that matter, government and private business leaders … are all citizens. They should make it a priority duty of their citizenship to be educated on all Constitutional issues. It is the primary duty of all oath-taking citizens, military or civilian, to uphold, and protect, and preserve the Constitution from all enemies … foreign and domestic. Any action, by any entity within or without this country, that seeks to destroy or deconstruct our Constitution requires proper, appropriate attention and positive actions to restore the status quo. One need not wed oneself to any political party to agree with this analysis. Comments about any and all political party actions are appropriate for the sake of the republic where citizen’s rights, freedoms, or US national security are in question … or when certain actions by the federal government raise serious questions.

This is not to suggest that high government Officials should sound-off publicly whenever they choose. All criticisms and issues are best resolved internally as a normal part of the business day and in the best interests of the Country. To do otherwise unnecessarily would be destructive and scandalous. It would otherwise result in chaotic foolishness and gaffes like those made by the current Vice President. Having said that, there is a noticeable lack of unity, team-work, cohesiveness and accountability in the decision-making of this Administration. Obama’s presidency has been characterized by very many observers [as diverse as the late, liberal Christopher Hitchens or the very lively conservative Charles Krauthammer] as being egocentric, dysfunctional, and extra-Constitutional from its very beginning.

Country first! Senior officers on Active Duty regard their duty to the Constitution first, and do not stand by idly or kowtow to political pressure as our armed forces and national security are put into jeopardy by ill-advised political decisions. If those actions result in their being fired or dismissed, then so be it. Officers are all charged to obey the lawful orders of our superiors. The Constitution is the supreme law of the land and it is the final arbiter. The President and his Cabinet are subject to the same constraints. So why is it that we see so many Presidential Executive actions that are so questionable going unchallenged? Why do our elected and military Leaders appear to allow charades like this to go unchallenged? In a positive, constructive fashion they must demand accountability and respect for the Constitution.

Debate history all you want, but the past dismissal of Generals like Patton, MacArthur, Singlaub, McChrystal and others were not so much because of a clash of egos as they were about doing their duty to force protection, national security, and their officer oath the Constitution as they saw it. They were dismissed for speaking out on leader decisions, yes; but, they did their duty as God gave them eyes to see it and the conscience to do it, and they accepted the consequences of their actions. Our country is better for this sort of principled moral courage

It was irritating [at least to this writer] to see this President of the United States line up his Defense Secretary and the Joint Chiefs of Staff and others as a backdrop as he outlined his plans for the drastic reductions in our armed forces. There they stood, dour-faced and serious. It was sickeningly reminiscent of pictures of an autocratic Kremlin Leader backed up by a slavish, bemedaled military staff. This is not the proper image for our constitutional republic where the Citizen is sovereign. The President of the United States should stand alone when he makes a call like this. As President Harry Truman’s desk plate said, “The buck stops here.” The military chiefs of the United States are not presidential enforcers. Those officers are called to be the guarantors of Freedom, not manikins for presidential photo-ops. And while we’re at it, all Citizens must cry out loudly against any plans for the use of the regular armed forces in any extra-Constitutional or law enforcement matter thus violating the tenets of posse comitatus. Remove posse comitatus and you risk serious mischief. Adherence to duly created Constitutional laws is the guarantor that prevents the creation of a “sub-tropical banana republic” in the United States.

How long before this present Obama Government, that amasses war stockpiles or ammunition in the NOAA Weather Service, finally explains itself? How long before somebody in the current Government says, “Enough,”? Write to your congressmen and congresswomen. Inquiring minds want to know.


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William R. Mann is a retired U.S. Army Lieutenant Colonel. He is currently a political observer, analyst, activist and writer for conservative causes. He received his Bachelor of Science at West Point and a Masters in National Security Affairs at the Naval Postgraduate School. He currently resides with his wife in Pensacola, Florida.
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