Hagel’s Salty Farewell To Mattis

Hagel’s Salty Farewell To Mattis

Even the usually stone-faced Marine Gen. James N. Mattis had to crack a smile.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, an Army sergeant in Vietnam, had just ditched one of the unspoken protocols of the Corps – that only Marines can utter the famed “Semper Fidelis” motto, and then only to each other.

“Now some of you may believe, and I know Gen. Mattis does, that an Army infantryman is not worthy of the words “Semper Fi” passing from his lips. Well, the hell with it, general. I am the Secretary and I say ‘Semper Fi’ and thank you.”


Hagel was presiding Friday at a combination change of command and informal retirement ceremony for the 62-year-old Mattis, whose call sign was “Chaos.” At MacDill Air Force Base outside Tampa, Fla., Mattis was turning over the colors of the U.S. Central Command to his “battle buddy” and successor, Army Gen. Lloyd Austin, and ending more than 40 years in uniform.

In his remarks, Austin, who oversaw the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq as the last commander of Operation New Dawn, noted that he will be undertaking a similar task at CentCom in the scheduled 2014 pullout of all combat troops from Afghanistan.

His job will be to ensure a smooth transition of lead responsibilities to the Afghan national security forces and “to get the equipment out,” Austin said. In both Iraq and Afghanistan, the U.S. goal was “to provide their people with the opportunity to come out from under the oppression of a dictator,” Austin said.

Challenges still exist in Afghanistan, Austin said, “but we are seeing some progress being made in some areas.”

As head of CentCom, Austin will be taking over what is arguably the most important of the combatant commands with an area of responsibility, including the Middle East, Central Asia and North Africa, that has seen constant turmoil from the revolts of the Arab spring and the threat from Iran.

Austin suggested that diplomacy would be a main part of his job portfolio. He commented favorably on the work of the Arab League and the Gulf Cooperation Council in easing tensions and said “this is what we hope to see more of.”

In paying tribute to Mattis, Austin recalled the 2003 invasion of Iraq, when he was with the 3rd Infantry Division on the “Thunder Run” to Baghdad up the western bank of the Euphrates. “To our right was the 1st Marine Division, led by my battle buddy ‘Fighting Jim Mattis,’” Austin said.

Mattis, as usual, was brief and blunt in taking leave of CentCom. He said he had tried to lead CentCom “across a tumultuous region in the interests of peace,” and at the same time deliver a message to “the maniacs who attacked us” on 9/11 that CentCom troops stood ready to deliver swift justice. “I would happily storm hell in the company of these troops,’ Mattis said.

In his eventful career, Mattis led the longest ship-to-shore assault in Marine Corps history – more than 400 miles by helicopter from ships to Kandahar in 2001. He also led the longest overland assault by Marines in the race to Baghdad by the 1st Marine Division in 2003.

His bluntness has occasionally led to controversy. At a forum in San Diego in 2005, Mattis said: “You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn’t wear a veil. You know, guys like that ain’t got no manhood left anyway. So it’s a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them. Actually, it’s a lot of fun to fight.”

Gen. Michael Hagee, then the Marine commandant, said Mattis should have toned down his remarks, but he was not disciplined.
Hagel called Mattis “a legendary figure that Marine recruits will know of and draw inspiration from for many years to come,” and he also noted the slogan for Marines that Mattis made famous in Iraq: “No worse enemy, no better friend.”

“Gen. Mattis has demonstrated to the world that truly there is no worse enemy, and no better friend, than a United States Marine,” Hagel said. “He has devoted his life, his energy, his intellect, and his force of courage and personality to the U.S. Marine Corps, our military, and our country. And our nation is forever grateful for his service.”

Mattis said that the troops he has commanded over the years had proven repeatedly “that free men and women can fight like the dickens,” and he paid tribute to all who volunteer to serve and “sign a blank check payable with their lives to the American people.”
Mattis said there was “no one better prepared” to succeed him than Austin and then, before quickly returning to his seat, added “I bid you all a fond farewell.”

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Hagel is already proving himself to be a bonehead

Hagel also noted the slogan for Marines that Mattis made famous in Iraq: “No worse enemy, no better friend.”

I bet COL Dowdy and ODA 574 might differ…
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I’m not a fan of Matts (nor do I detest him) but the press tends to make some Generals superhuman. The same was the case with Shwartzkopf. I wish Mattis well but he had his share of blemishes.

God’s Speed General Mattis, thank you for your service and for your honest assessment and remarks.…Damn shame we don’t have a lot more like you. General Austin, the best of luck, God bless both of you and the troops you lead.

Stone Faced!!!! This man is a great leader and always had a smile on his face. He enjoyed his service and the troops he served with.

The only journalistic coverage of Mattis’ retirement, and you publish a picture of the back of his head and make the lede how bold Sec Def Hagel is for saying “Semper Fi?” Really? Was there no picture of his face to be had or is the most important element of the story actually Sec Def Hagel’s canned humour? Fail. Try again and do better.

“No worse enemy, no better friend.”.….….….….….Sulla 78 B.C.E.

YOU MUST HAVE LOST YOUR MIND, YOU COMPARE FAT ASS SHWARTZKOPF TO MARINE GENERAL MATTIS. GO TO THE CORNER AND TAKE A TIMEOUT.

Really? That all you got? You want to YELL about looks?

Classic RICHARD.

You mean Mattis didn’t invent that quote?

Mattis is an atavistic throwback.

Thank God for atavistic throwbacks.

In an era when generals are known for clinical MBA managerialism above all else, the country did at least produce and promote a valiant warrior soul who rejected PowerPoint and all its works.

It’s to our collective detriment that he is leaving.

At the very least he is no comparison to the King Hell Bonehead, Donald Rumsfeld. By far, the worst SecDef in history.

Its Schwarzkopf you moron, and he was a damn good general officer, show some respect

Good grief. You’re as bad as Richard. Spelling is your hang up huh? Did you know KrazyCol that Krazy is with a “C”? You may want to be more cautious in calling others a moron? It draws attention…

Reread what I wrote. Generals don’t walk on water. Maybe if more officers realized their leaders were fallible they’d be more likely to question (respectfully) a decision or two.

Mattis part of the generation of self serving bravado that lost Somalia, Afghanistan and Iraq.

Mattis is a well-known reader of the classics. I’ve never read where he’s claimed credit for “inventing” the saying, that is the writer’s assertion.

I think the general would heartily agree however, with your earlier post of not idolizing general officers. Sorry to see him go.

yes he was, and the only man 2 have the job 2x the youngest & oldest SECDEF. The way he treated CofJCofS Shinseki was criminal. All he wanted was yes men for his “Go in light” vision for Iraq, totally negating the “Powell” doctrine. Many brave soldiers & marines paid the price for his squinty eyed “vision”

its Shwarzkopf! and he was a damn good general officer and field commander!

its K by choice major with a zero, and I’ll call a major a moron when ever I want. I know plenty of them!

No doubt, many officers forget when they were younger and dumber… Rank has that tendency…

I was taught not to disparge subordinates as a group. You’re painting an awesome image of yourself “Colonel”.

Like I said, as some advance, they forget…

Some of us have fat fingers. Typos always get you so excited?

Yes, KrazyCOL, I’m sure you would’ve done a much better job leading 540,000 troops during ODS than he did. He did such a terrible job, didn’t he.

I was in the same division as General Schwarzkopf when he was an ADC and was good friends with his second aide. He treated my battalion commander wrong, but he was definitely one of the clan. I had honest questions about the guy’s ability to command a large mechanized army, but everything came out all right in Desert Storm in large part due to Stormin’ Norman’s vision and leadership. May he rest in peace. Mattis has many intellectual flaws, but heroic leadership is not one of them. I think a bit more humility, especially among the brothers of the bayonet, at the time of his retirement is in order. And yes, I agree with him about the veils, even as much as I disagree with reducing counterinsurgency to squad level tactics. Speed and Power.

Amazing most all of these comments being made here reflct nothing more than that old “ONE UP,MENSHIP” role. Envy and jealous is a choice.…envy is preferred, while the other may be inferred as an illness.…. We seem to froget tha 40 years of miliatry service supercedes 10 years of service??? Think before to leap.….fools…

Shinseki was NEVER Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. He was the Chief of Staff of the Army. Despite their differences, given GEN Shinseki’s many years of honorable service, I agree he was treated very poorly by the former SECDEF especially when Shinseki retired from the Army. However, Shinseki’s testimony to Congress on the estimate of forces needed in Iraq of “a few hundred thousand” eventually proved far more accurate than predictions by either Rumsfeld and his Deputy, Wolfowitz.

This general talks big and proud but what did he say when the coalition forces let go the Republican Guards in Desert Storm? What did he say then and now about the Clinton administration denigration of the military and the debacles of Rwanda and Serbia, etc.? In 2003? I wonder not how many enemy killed but how many our own Marines were killed and maimed and fired on by our own weapons. What does the general say about that? What does the proud Mattis say about the failures of counterinsurgency in Afghanistan and Iraq? What does he say about the changing military in terms of the new enlistment standards? What did Mattis say about the Benghazi murders? The present Oval office occupants? He says NOTHING! Mattis says big things when it doesn’t hurt him.Did Mattis made assure his career was intact and convenient for 40 years by playing the game of politics at the expense of the Marines, the Corps and the military as a whole? It looks that way.

When he’s in front of the boss he a different person. He let the SecDef chide him even on his last day. The general should have popped Hagel a good one right in front of the cameras. Doesn’t sound like a bad a$$ general to me! I know privates, PFC’s, and sergeants who did more on the battlefield in a day than did this general officer in his 40 years. A typical flag officer of today, good riddance.

The system today promotes careerists because otherwise total syncophants would rise to the top. Managerial or not, generals today operate in a totally different envoronment than in the past. I don’t care what you call it…leadership…management, whatever. No General Patton, MacArthur, or Pershing would survive in the U.S. military today due to the thin skinned, PC-politically-senistive-policy-making environment our elected officials and their staffs place them in. Can you imagine one of these famous generals being more concerned with the sexual orientation of their troops than the troops ability to survive and win in combat? If a general today evokes too vociferously the purpose of the military; that is to defend our country and if need be to close with and destroy our enemies, he must be very careful lest he not only offend our protagonists but those who apologize for the enemy’s real aggression or imagined affronts to their polity. At least Mattis, a boy scout compared to other historically relevent military leaders, got a few memorable martial soundbites in without suffering an early dismissal.

I highly doubt “KrazyCOL” is or ever has been a Colonel. He is actually probably some butter bar who got kicked out the military for being such a bonehead.

This general talks big and proud but what did he say when the coalition forces let go the Republican Guards in Desert Storm? What did he say then and now about the Clinton administration denigration of the military and the debacles of Rwanda and Serbia, etc.? What did he say when so many Marines were gunned down by friendly fire in 2003? What did the proud general say about the failures of counterinsurgency in Afghanistan and Iraq? What does he say about the changing military in terms of the new enlistment standards? What did he say about the Benghazi murders? The present Oval office occupants? He said NOTHING! If the general is anything like his reputation he would have popped Hagel a good one right in front of the cameras. But, he didn’t. Doesn’t sound like a tough guy to me. I know privates, PFC’s, and sergeants who did more on the battlefield in a single day than did this general officer in his 40 years.

You are spot-on. Rumsfeld’s arrogant and mocking dismissal of the Powell Doctrine was as shameful as it was incompetent. And in true Rumsfeld fashion, left the American Warrior holding the bag of excrement…

Skin color was bad enough in their day.

“Hmm, can they operate weaponry, or should we relegate them to driving for Red Ball Express?”

And before that, it was the USCT building roads because nobody was sure if they would fight.

The Army has always had to deal with integrating Those Other Guys…

I know General Mattis and have worked with him and for him. He is a dedicated professional totally without guile. I have also worked with General Austin and he is every bit as professional and dedicated to serving his country with honor and courage. We are lucky to have sucg incredible men wearing the cloth of our Nation!

You have obviously never worn the uniform.

Hegal is a Punk and read end kissing apostle for Obama.
No General normally in their right mind that wantsd to maintain their career will speak back to a President, even the loser we have now that would wet his pants if he had to get in a fire fight.

The actual phrase on Sulla’s epitaph reads “No friend ever served me, and no enemy ever wronged me, whom I have not repaid in full”. Same meaning, though.

Farewell to a great warfighter. I wish him well in his retirement. General Mattis was a great Marine, and a spirited leader. He lead with strong conviction, and stood proudly alongside any Marine of any rank. Although many might chastise him for some of the decisions that he made during his career, many Marines would proudly serve under his command. The political structure of our armed forces can force a good service member to make decisions that they utterly cannot avoid. A leader must choose his battles appropriately. General Mattis did his best to maintain the balance between being a true leader of warriors and a political statesman. I hope many future leaders in our armed forces take heed to General Mattis’ example and the examples set forth from the many great leaders in our armed forces of past. Farewell General Mattis and Semper Fi.

You are full of shit. He’s been there, done that!! The troops loved him.

Excellent point. We are so screwed.

What? You think that Mattis has to prove he is a badass by committing a crime? Assaulting his designated superior is a CRIME under the UCMJ and would be punished severely.
Yeah, you know Privates, etc who SAY they did more than Mattis in a day but I seriously doubt it.

Lets see, Desert Storm was 22 yrs ago and Mattis was FAR from being a 4 star general back then. Tell us all what he was supposed to do back then. Should he have quit? Mutinyed? Be specific.

Are Generals supposed to give political commentary on the orders that they are given? What world do you live in?

Don’t we all.

A person does not become a flag officer without knowing Article 38 “…keep your mouth shut if you cannot say something good about your commanding officer”…and POTUS is his commanding officer.

I understand what your saying.… But you misundersatnd my frustration. Of course mutiny is not an option, but quitting is, as so many good officers and NCO’s do under unpopular leadership. Gen Mattis, like all military professionals, studies warfare, battles, conflicts and he has a responsibility to speak up and speak out when political decisions adversely impact the desired end result of a battle plan or if a political decision interfers with subordinate command’s attempts to exploit opportunites on the battlefield. Our generals today are spineless and do not measure up to the standards of senior officer quality 60 years ago.

Tool … I have neither the time nor inclination to explain myself to a man who sleeps under the very blanket of freedom I provide and the pn the question the manner in which I provide it. I’d rather you just said thank you!

Are you kidding … Where did you serve and when? And serving as a “community organizer” in south Chicago doesn’t count …

Semper Fi Sir!
Having served with him at I MEF.…thank you for the honor.…and welcome to the next chapter!

Having served with the USMC, a Devil Doc has earned this honor too! So Semper Fi Devil Dog.

Farewell General Mattis, I know you have to fight and ‘survive’ in a terrible PC atmosphere that binds our troops hands and has an imbecil from Kenya telling General’s and Admiral’s what he want’s them to do. Sadly when one stands up and tells Obama to go F himself there is suddenly some scandal to trash that leaders abilities and remove them from the Military. There is now a group of Ass Kisser’s in the Pentagon that bow to this fake dictator wannabe. A Patton or McArthur in today’s military would sadly be bound for life in levenworth for standing up, kicking ass and letting some one else take the names. Our Military is a mere shadow of what it used to be and the new recruit’s have to be willing to blindly follow any order given lawful or otherwise

There was NEVER a more political animal than MacArthur. Even his momma kissed political ass to push him up the ladder. He was the Alexander Haig of his day.

All the chrap that gets thrown around about our military makes me wonder. How in hell do we still get people willing to volunteer their lives in support of our nation? If every one hates the leadership how do they get elected? I am a soldier for LIFE no matter how old I am. I am so very proud of the son’s and daughter’s that make up our military today! I served with draftees and saw the change to a volunteer force, which at the time I didn’t think would work, the reductions in force putting out many very good soldiers. I saw changes all the years that I was active and all the years since I retired in 1988. The one thing that hasn’t changed is that soldier’s fight for those with them first and foremost!

Served under him with task force 58 and This Marines humble opinion is that General Mattis was a Leader of Marines and probally not the most PC fella I ever met. I retired at 20 years and it felt at times it was a life time. I can not imagine 40 years of service.

Semper Fidelis Sir
GySgt (Ret)
88–09

Another example of history repeating itself. A SFOD on the Laotian border on highway 9 was being overrun by tanks. The nearest help was 26th Marines at Khe Sahn. Guess who refused to come to the aid of SFOD in dire need. I should let you know that I am a former Recon Marine (A Co 3rd Recon RVN) and a former SF Trooper from a SFOD. I have seen both sides of the argument. As I recon marine, when we got shot out while on patrol, if it was night time, only the Army would send the choppers. I know my opinion is my own and not everyone will agree with me. Thank God for the freedom to have and express an opinion.

Hagel, like his boss Obama, just HAD to violate tradition and protocal!! The United States has great, time honored, and internationally envied traditions which bind us into the great Republic we are! Obama and his minions are hell bent on destroying the traditional and exclusively American way of life and mold us into the hodge-podge from which Obama came!
Hail and Farewell, General Mattis!

Why does all these politicians keep spending ‘OUR’ hard earned tax money to go to all these other countries who could less for the Americans? Why not save money, get on the phone ans call these different countries and tell them what they want to say. It would save money not only on plane fuel, but at the most expensive hotel, dinners and meals that cost hundreds of dollars and save money for the special agents that has to tag along so they can have call girls in there room with parties that coat thousands of dollars. That’s the main reason the US is such a debt for the past 15 years. Also stop paying x-Presidents a retirement when they only served 4 or 8 years. We all know John F. Kennedy had fun with Marilyn Monroe & Angie Dickenson and others while he was president, so did L.B. Johnson, and then my Uncle Bill Clinton. I figure more than half of our presidents had affairs with pretty women during their term as president. But who cares about that, I don’t, I only don’t like see my hard earned tax money going to other countries for nothing, other countries who don’t give a damn for the Americans, only the money. If these politicians want to go somewhere, let them pay for their own air fare and dinners and hotel bills from their pockets. NOT OUR TAX MONEYS. The US need that tax money to pay for road repair, and maintenance of the city and state vehicles.

Well that’s about the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard! You must be a Muslim extremist! What a detriment to this country you are! We haven’t lost anything! I know right where those countries are! GET A MAP! Then quit letting your butt do your talking!

OK — seriously. there is no Private, PFC or Sergeant who did more in 1 day than Gen Mattis did in 40 years. You better go back and do some REAL homework. You have no idea what you are talking (or should I say Grandstanding) about.

A soldier don’t have mutter words to remind us of our obligations to the Country, or have these cute little motto’s. we show it on the field of battle by “Blazing a path to glory for others to follow”. Thats not a motto, thats a way of life. Good luck on your retirement General.

say what you will.. i hear both sides of this argument but it still boils down to the simple but huge fact that “you respect and salute the rank and uniform, not the person wearing them” … This man, regardless of your opinions, still signed up, took the test, passed the test, earned the coveted EGA and the right to wear the uniform and join OUR ranks, OUR brotherhood, through blood, sweat and tears! he lasted 40yrs (thats double enlistment) in the roughest, toughest, most respected military service on the planet.. and that counts for alot in any business let alone the waging war business! yes there are ups and downs, good calls and bad..lives saved and lives lost in this type of business but have you done it? could you do it? i didnt think so!! regardless of your opinions and even my own, this man earned his place at the table and represented us well… for that i say my fellow belleau woodsman, THANK YOU for your service to OUR country and OUR Corps!! may God bless you and yours in your future missions! carry on with pride Devil Dog “SEMPER FI”

PS) hey DOC, no need to explain your place at OUR table… you know YOU BELONG there!!! Hagle & Oblama… noww thats a different story! “SEMPER FI” my brother!!

B.S. Our military does not get defeated by the enemies military. We “lose” wars because of our wishy-washy government and spineless clots like you. When at war listen to the experts — the military — not some local yokel who bought his way into congress or who is a political hack.

Apparently you know nothing about the civilian/ military relationship, and related rules that exist in this country.
It is illegal for a man/woman on active duty to criticize the civilian “leadership” if that’s what you want to call it.Advice is provided, and then orders are followed. I’d be willing to bet that Gen. Mattis speaks out as a civilian much as other senior officers have. Ever heard of Gen. Boykin? Listen to his take on the current administration.! You better hope the U.S. military never decides to have a coup. Guys like you would be the first to “go”.

Kenya? “Fake dictator wannabe”?

Good god, turn off fox fantasy channel and raise your IQ to at least room temperature, dittohead.

What’s disheartening, is reading nonsense like your post where you sling out silly lies and misinformation propagated by those who hope you don’t question nor investigate further. Another words, you proved them right, you don’t think beyond what you heard on the TV.

Chances are, you’re a real authentic arm chair warrior, just like the last administration.

You obviously work for the highway department or some state entity and are a little disgruntled at being forced to drive an Ford Ranger as a work vehicle instead of your preferred F-350 gas guzzler. You and your kind are part of the problem. You think you deserve something and your fat A$$ should walk sometime.

Look at the influence and impact that narcissistic ego in the White House (and his appointees) have had on our republic generally and the military in particular. Is it any surprise?

W/o, not sure what military, if any, you served in, nor for what country, but in my country, and my military, there was a book called the UCMJ. Amongst the many articles of this Uniform Code for Military Justice, was Article 92, disrespect to a senior (your choice) Officer/Non-Commissioned Officer. That still holds true even in today’s military, the Secretary of Defense works for the EXECUTIVE Commander-In Chief, the POTUS, thus making the Secretary of Defense in the General’s Chain of Command, therefore, any disparging words or actions against either was subject to a Court Martial or Non-Judicial punishment.

The Constitution specifically specified these positions, occupied by civilians, to maintain a separation of of the military by civilian command.

OK, class of military and Constitutional history is dismissed

“Arm Chair Warrior”?? You may disparage Bush’s Air National Guard service but he did fly high performance fighers in an era when they were known as “Lawn Darts” because of how often they crashed. He did actually fly them. Now compare that to the service given by President Obama.

Bush was a deserter! His daddy got him into the national Guard to avoid the draft (back then, the Guard didn’t serve as it does now). Bush spent most of his time drinking and partying and spent a good portion of his already gifted existence AWOL from the guard.

Those the facts about our “mission accomplished” phoney.

Nonsense.

A$$HOLE

You sure sould like you have a chip on your shoulder. Wanna meet me in the treeline?

Go ahead and keep spewing the bullshit.
Neverless:
FACT : Reservists who do not meet attendance requirements are discharged for non-participation, they are not charged with desertion. I served over 20 yrs as a reservist and in command for 10 of them. I had a number of cases like this and they were not considered deserters.

FACT : Bush flew F-102’s which were notorious for crashing. This included 2 years of active duty.

FACT : President Obama has not served AT ALL

Fact: Bush performed part-time Guard duty as an F-102 pilot through April 1972, logging a total of 336 flight hours. After April 1972, Bush failed to meet the attendance requirements established for members of the Air National Guard. In mid-1972, he failed to meet the Air Force requirement for an annual physical examination for pilots, and lost his authorization to be a pilot.

“In a document dated May 2, 1973, Bush’s immediate superiors gave him his annual performance review for the period from May 1, 1972 to April 30, 1973. The review stated that “Lt. Bush has not been observed at this unit during the period of the report.”

Reason was Bush was working for a family friend’s senate campaign, Winton Blount. Another family friend got him that job (though, not the same family friend who got him in the Guard thus getting out of the draft). An interesting side to his work on that senate campaign… Winton Blount’s son Tom said (of Bush) “He was an attractive person, kind of a ‘frat boy.’ I didn’t like him. Blount lost the election.

Right you are! However Mac still said what what he wanted to say and did what he wanted to do without political reprecussions until Truman came on the scene. Patton still got promoted. And, well Pershing jumped the rank structure almost completely.

Obviously you know NOTHING about becoming a military pilot, even in the National Guard. It is not done “Part Time”.

Thanks for detailing the number of hours logged in the F-102 which proved my point that he SERVED and that service was in a somewhat dangerous job. LOL, generally the “privledged ones” get the safe duty working on the base newspaper or working in an obscure office somewhere.

Oh, and what possible relevance is some BS quote for the son of a senate candidate to this issue? Does Winston Blount’s son Tom have comments on whether Obama served or not?

Nonsense. I’m through with you. You fail to make coherent comments. The whole point of ‘ol “mission accomplished” military record is just the point you made, dittohead! He failed to honor his obligation! Daddy and friends got him out of the draft and he knew it, he knew it was all a charade. Jesus, do some study, turn off fox and the drug addict known as “Rush”!

I predicated the comment, ditthohead or did you not pay attention? Reading comprehension problems, maybe?

I’m out of here… you are tedious, not interesting at all.

Avoiding the issue as usual. You fail to acknowledge that Bush was active duty for 2 years and that there was no desertion.

Again… do you have a reading comprehension problem? The facts are there, the Shrub was AWOL for close to a year, while working on Blounts campaign. He never took the guard seriously because it was merely the means for him to avoid the draft. Besides, daddy and his friends took care of any fallout from the Shrub’s immature behavior. He was a party boy. If you’re going to jump behind someone, go with McCain. At least he really does have a military record, the Shrub? Nope. Mr. “mission accomplished” failed miserably.

Oh and remember this dittohead, the majority of America re-elected the President (he’s actually fixing what 8 years of failed republiCon policy wrought). You lost. Get over it.

We are more than so screwed but what applies can not be put in words here.

General Mathis, thanks for your service. I really applaud your desire to help your wife during her time of need. Having been a Marine brat, and a Marine for a short time, but then a law enforcement officer for 35 years, our wifes put up with a lot of crap for us to do our jobs. You have done yours and have made a difference. Now time to help the family. I salute you not because of your rank, but because of you as a person.

You do a disservice to Patton and Pershing by linking them to MacArthur. He wasn’t ready despite hours of warning on Dec. 7th. Then, he left wounded soldiers on Corregedor to make more room for his furniture on the PT boats sent to rescue him (for which FDR nearly fired him). And let’s not even start on Korea. Having said that, overall, I doubt the generals and admirals of yore were any different than today’s.

40 years in the “roughest, toughest, most respected military service on the planet..”. I recently was given my at pension orders after 38 years. I started 2 years after General Mattis earned his “butter bar”, but I dont remember him ever serving with us in the Royal Marines or SBS. I’ve trained in the USA with the USMC 23 different times, or as we call it Holiday.
Just remember that after a decade plus of combat in Iraq and Afghanistan, your Yank Army is significantly more respected(and capable) than the Yank Marines.
As for your Minister of Defense(correct spelling seems important on this page), as a old political hack, he is a big enough Knob to work in our Government.
General Mattis, good luck in your pension years.
RM = Royal Marine = Real Marine.

Your right there is no comparing those two. That fat assed old out of shape Army dude was a significantly superior commander compared to that recruiting poster Marine.
The fat guy would move Heaven and Earth if a small unit was being overrun. He did personally in Vietnam and as a Commander he made every availble asset in Centcom availible when a ODA was being over run.
Former Commandant of the Marine Corps General M.W. Hagee described Mattis as a “small, pathetic man” and a “whiney jackass” who specialized in “constantly undermining the Chain of Command for his own personal gain”.
Then again General Hagee lost all his Marine credibility when he was asked which Marine unit in Iraq was the most effective. His answer ” which ever Marine unit is lined up behind the 7th US Cavalry. When you have well trained American Soldiers and Marines working together, well the enemy doesn’t really have much of a chance”, being biggerthan inter-service rivalry is a big no-no in the USMC.

He is a good man. He led Marines in battle and did not equivocate when it was time for hard decesions. Personally, he has chrisma and is well thought of by his Marines. All the rest simply does not matter. Of course he made mistakes along the way. Those who think they could have done better are most likely fools.

From one Vietnam Marine Veteran to General Mathis “kudos to you and your family and ““OoRah” for a 40 year plus career in OUTSTANDING support and commitment to our United States way of life. Mathis reminds me of the legendary George S. Patton of the U.S. Army, who had the GUTS TO SAY AND AND DO what was necessary at the time to WIN A WAR AND PLAN STRATEGIES THAT WILL SAVE U.S. SOLDIERS LIVES.

REMEMBER, ALL U.S. Services are in these conflicts and wars together, so let’s NOT throw stones at each U.S. military institution. All services had losses of life in these conflicts as well as 911 civilians, so to HELL with the enemy Ragheads that have no respect for their own women and would not hesitate to KILL our children if given the chance. He who can do a better military job than Mathis, STEP UP OR SHUT UP !

GOD BLESS GENERAL MATHIS AND HIS LOYAL FAMILY — SEMPER FI — SIR !

John, Well said. I believe that our Generals are half and half warriors and politicians. They must make those compromises that enable the forces with money, eqpt, personnel. Most generals have the mission in mind. A few are corrupt and self serving. One thing of note is that the National Security is on Auto-pilot in many ways. No one person can steer the ship nor wants to. At this point the original decisions of yesteryear that vectored the path we now follow will be called into question and will rise and fall on their original merit. Once sloughed off, new outgrowths must take their place. cyclical, never-ending.

Amen to the USMC Scout! Scuba Errr! Well said. Semper Fi!

As a US Army mustang, I trained with a number of marines in several military specialties. I have a HUGE respect for Marines. I would never even THINK of violating a Marine tradition. Hagel was, is, and apparently always will be, a JERK.

Actually, I was going to add a dash and other very short word to jerk but didn’t want to offend any more sensitive readers.

I had 18 years enlisted,15 of which was FMF,got my commission as a good career move but never had any fun as a 0. would go back to being a corpsman in a heartbeat,if i wasn’t old and fat.

You cannot be a great Marine without blemishes… no one will trust you if you are afraid to get your hands dirty… after all we are in the business of killing and killing is a dirty business…

Very true Jerry. War is a dirty business but you might want to read up on those incidents I highlighted. Refusing to send help for wounded Americans or the relief of COL Dowdy is probably the kind of “dirty” one doesn’t want to be guilty of.

Best of luck to you my friend, you will never be forgotten in my life time, It was a pleasure to serve with you (even in IDAHO) and like I told you before when we were younger, you were going to go along way in the USMC, Semper FI ! Time to stand down and enjoy Life with you family. BWG/Retired Msgt USMC

Agreed. I served with Gen Mattis TWICE. Seems more like they are promoting pansies to leadership positions rather than TRUE WARRIORS like Gen Mattis

OK, in 1991, General Mattis was a Lt. Col. WTF was he suppose to say/do? Get on the Phone and say,“Sorry Mr. President, me and my 1000 men (REINF INF Battalion of 1/7) are just going to invade.
AND if there is a insurgency, who is to blame?
ONE thing about being in uniform, we don’t get to speak up. GEN McCrystal spoke up and he got fired.

General Mattis was in the field, SERVING along side those Privates.

I think there would be a line for that “WALL TO WALL COUNSELING” with that fart knocker.

Amen!

And with THAT…POOF! Gone like a fart in the wind. So damn glad I left at 20. PC (nutless) commanders have made BETTER MEN than them LEAVE the ranks for decades. Names like Rhoden, Banks, Babbi, Ritchie, Rizzo, Hawn, Greenwood, Hammond, Goddard have been the REASON. Megalomaniacs, narcissistic, arrogant, deceitful, micromanaging, conniving, LYING, contemptuous, moral cowards are what comes to mind when the ‘older’ Marines get together and BS about the good, the bad, and the SHAMEFUL. Each and every single one of those ‘marines’ have marginalized, stolen, and removed ALL DIGNITY from those that were unfortunate enough to exist under their reigns of terror…er I mean service. You KNOW who you are.…You were weak men then, and always will be… Advice, don’t attend any reunion activities.…Then again, I’m sure there are not many invitations in the mail these days… Enjoy your retirement General! Obama did you a FAVOR!

I congratulate you for having known General Mattis. How can I get in touch with him? I trust in God some day I can talk to him. God bless General Mattis.

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