Seven Days In May

Military Encroachment On Civilian Authority & Seven Days In May

Via Digby comes this unsettling article by David Wood in Politics Daily about the growing militant contempt among military leadership for civilian authority and control.

The military officer corps is rumbling with dissatisfaction and dissent, and there are suggestions from some that if officers disagree with policy decisions by Congress and the White House, they should vigorously resist.

Officers have a moral responsibility, some argue, to sway a policy debate by going public with their objections or leaking information to the media, and even to sabotage policy decisions by deliberate foot-dragging.

This could spell trouble ahead as Washington grapples with at least two highly contentious issues: changing the policy on gays and lesbians in the military, and extricating U.S. forces from Afghanistan. In both cases, senior officers already have disagreed sharply and publicly with Defense Secretary Robert Gates and President Barack Obama, and in some cases officers have leaked documents to bolster their case.

…..

“The military officer belongs to a profession upon whose members are conferred great responsibility, a code of ethics, and an oath of office. These grant him moral autonomy and obligate him to disobey an order he deems immoral,” writes Marine Lt. Col. Andrew R. Milburn in Joint Forces Quarterly, an official journal published by the National Defense University under the aegis of the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

That is especially true if his civilian leaders are incompetent, writes Milburn, who currently is assigned to the U.S. Special Operations Command in Stuttgart, Germany.

….

“When the results of bad decision-making are wasted lives and damage to the Nation; when the customary checks laid down in the Constitution — the electoral voice of the people, Congress, or the Supreme Court — are powerless to act in time; and when the military professional alone is in a position to prevent calamity, it makes little sense to argue that he should not exercise his discretion,” Milburn writes.

Read the entire article; please.

Now, there is no sense of any direct coup type of trend afoot in all this so much as an accelerating trend to the militarization of government and resigned acceptance by the Continue reading

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emptywheel @atchley_sr First Gentleman.
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emptywheel @thegrugq He's gotta avoid admitting he was embarrassingly wrong at first. Very important. @mattblaze
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emptywheel If Clinton is lecturing POTUS on what he's doing it wrong, is he doing it as ex-POTUS or spouse of future candidate? https://t.co/Vbm9dp13o1
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bmaz Frankly, some of the better work ever done by FiveThirtyEightNate and his crew of stat kids http://t.co/luujZXGA4V
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emptywheel @billmon1 But but but! Inclusive government.
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bmaz Citizens shot by dozens in Chicago weekly, dozens kids killed in Newtown; but this country bed wetting over ISIS+Khorasan? #PatheticAmerica
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JimWhiteGNV Gosh, it sure isn't taking long for more of that camel to get into the tent.
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emptywheel @onekade Actually wonder if people who've been close to Karzai figure they need to get out while they can.
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emptywheel Why don't we call "inversion" defection, anyway?
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JimWhiteGNV RT @davewills34: Halloween came early to Boston... lots of the announced 35,566 people dressed as red seats for the game.
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emptywheel @TimothyS No, not really. They just don't realize that'll be the effect.
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