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Ear to the Ground

Joint Chiefs Chairman Likely to Back Big Cut in Troops

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Posted on Aug 24, 2007
Peter Pace
latimes.com

It looks as though Gen. Peter Pace, whose term as Joint Chiefs chairman and the president’s top military adviser is about to expire, may go out with a bang. While Gen. David Petraeus is expected to back the White House’s push for an extended surge, Gen. Pace is likely to call for a major reduction—by almost half—of U.S. forces in Iraq in order to address the long-term needs of an overextended military.


Los Angeles Times:

The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is expected to advise President Bush to reduce the U.S. force in Iraq next year by almost half, potentially creating a rift with top White House officials and other military commanders over the course of the war.

Administration and military officials say Marine Gen. Peter Pace is likely to convey concerns by the Joint Chiefs that keeping well in excess of 100,000 troops in Iraq through 2008 will severely strain the military. This assessment could collide with one being prepared by the U.S. commander in Iraq, Army Gen. David H. Petraeus, calling for the U.S. to maintain higher troop levels for 2008 and beyond.

Asked about the report that Pace favored the troop cut, White House Deputy Press Secretary Gordon Johndroe said today in Crawford, Texas, where Bush is spending several days at his home, that “the president has received no recommendations regarding our future force posture in Iraq.”

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PatrickHenry's avatar

By PatrickHenry, August 25, 2007 at 3:45 pm Link to this comment

Coup d’etat.

We need a cadre of officers and enlisted to do what the congress can’t, remove Bush, Cheney and others of the executive branch from power.

Send them to Guantanamo, get the truth out of them of who profited illegally and sieze assets and bodies.

Simple.

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By June, August 25, 2007 at 11:35 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Unless there is a secret agenda to utterly destroy the US from the inside out, it is sheer madness for this Administration to even contemplate attacking Iran (at Israel’s bidding).  We’re stretched perilously thin in Iraq and Afghanistan and have depleted the National Guard’s numbers on their native soil to the extent that national emergencies lack adequate response.  How the hell do we expect to be successful on a still different front that will in all probability blow up in our faces?  Russia isn’t going to sit by and watch a source of their oil be pirated away by the Bushies, so we’re going to fan the ashes of the Cold War into glowing embers. Unless, as I said, this is deliberate malice on the part of this Administration and therefore treason, then we should consider instigating commitment proceedings against all those promoting excuses for attacking Iran, since they are obviously and certifiably insane. One might add, criminally insane. Our military’s emphasis on air strikes that have resulted in so many casualties of “friendly fire” (how about that as a oxymoron!) and the literal massacre of countless innocent civilians sets a tempting precedent.  Two can play that game, and Russia is beefing up its air power. But anyone who risks telling the truth in this country now is nothing but another Cassandra, doomed always to be right but never believed.

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By VietnamVet, August 25, 2007 at 9:40 am Link to this comment

Sorry folks about the double post; the system is running so slow I thought it did not post the first time. Guess it is a continuation of the truthdig problems with posting?

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farmertx's avatar

By farmertx, August 25, 2007 at 9:30 am Link to this comment

#96828 by VietnamVet on 8/25 at 8:10 am
(29 comments total)

I stand corrected on the rotation.
And I agree that no flag rank officer has been willing to remember Duty Honor Country.
There was one Marine, a Col., I believe, at the outset that complained that his troops were being expected to be policemen rather than combat troops, which was how they were trained.
He was dismissed.
But, he still has his Honor and he remembered his Duty also extended to his men, not just the politician’s. That is something none of the others, especially Tommy Franks can say.

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By VietnamVet, August 25, 2007 at 9:25 am Link to this comment

RE: 96817 by farmertx on 8/25 at 4:03 am

There is no need to rotate the JCS amongst the services. He/She is appointed by the President, with the consent of the Senate. See it here:

http://www.jcs.mil/goldwater_nichol_act1986.html

In any event, as I have posted elsewhere, the current crop of General Officers are more interested in advancing their careers than doing what is best for the troops! Witness: not a single field general, that I am aware of, has told it like it is in Iraq. Those that have attained that grade simply want to keep it and/or tack on another star. That means towing the “decider’s” line OR ELSE. I do not think we will see any change unless the current crop are either fired, retired, resigned, or deceased. Note that I did not mention have a change of heart and tell it like it is, for that is synonymous with FIRED! What a bunch of “star gazers.”

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By VietnamVet, August 25, 2007 at 9:10 am Link to this comment

RE:96817 by farmertx on 8/25 at 4:03 am

Just to clarify, there is no requirement to rotate the joint chief of staff between the services. He is appointed by the president, with the consent of the senate, and his term may be extended. You can see it here:

http://assembler.law.cornell.edu/uscode/html/uscode10/usc_sec_10_00000152——000-.html

In any event, as I have posted elsewhere, the current crop of General Officers are more interested in advancing their careers than doing what is best for the troops! Witness: not a single field general has told it like it is in Iraq. Those that have attained that grade simply want to keep it and/or tack on another star. That means towing the “decider’s” line OR ELSE. I do not think we will see any change unless the current crop either fired, retire, resign, or deceased. Note that I did not mention have a change of heart and tell it like it is, for that is synonymous with FIRED! What a bunch of “star gazers.”

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By PACRAT, August 25, 2007 at 6:58 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

How many generals must Rove fire before he is convinced that Cheney’s war and he is a failure? Oh, Bush is in charge? Really? Is Scapregoat Patreaus next? Are we running out of generals very soon?

Isn’t it great to have as a commander in chief (not god in chief as the hype goes) who ran away from the Vietnam War by joining the Texas National Guard and then running away from it in charge?

What an insult to our veterans of Vietnam to have such a spokesman - too little, too late!

Help!

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By farmertx, August 25, 2007 at 5:03 am Link to this comment

#96767 by THOMAS BILLIS on 8/24 at 7:52 pm
(Unregistered commenter)

Actually, I don’t think Pace was ‘thrown overboard’. As I understand it, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs is rotated among the services, with each one serving a fixed term.
Aside from that, Pace was kissing the Shrubs’ ass. That is the prime test for any one in his administration; the ability to pucker up.
Paces’ career is over, regardless. Once they leave such a post, they retire.
Also noted that Sen. Warner, long a supporter of the Shrub, has announced upon his return from Iraq that it is time to start withdrawing.
Naturally, the Shrub feels that he should have waited until Patraeus gave the speech that Shrub is having prepared for him, until he announced anything.
Seems that comes under the heading, What are you gonna believe, me or your own eyes?

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By boggs, August 25, 2007 at 4:38 am Link to this comment

Seems that many GOP’ers find their courage “too little, too late.”
Or it evades them all together kind of like their absent conscience.
Their motto: Greed, Oil, Power

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By THOMAS BILLIS, August 24, 2007 at 8:52 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

When the book is written on this war"Dereliction of Duty Part 2"I am sure Peter Pace will be a major figure ala the yes men of Vietnam.Pace kissed the ass of this administration and they threw him overboard.How does it feel Peter?4000 dead and your career in shambles.Peter do not forget your part in the 100s of thousands of Iraqi dead.How do you sleep at night?

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farmertx's avatar

By farmertx, August 24, 2007 at 7:41 pm Link to this comment

It is nice that Gen. Pace, at the end of his term as COS, has found his spine.
I can only hope that his decision to back up a clueless and inept leader for so long doesn’t present a risk of nightmares for the next few years.
Just one more piece of proof that any one in this administration only speaks the party line…until they leave; then they can tell the truth.

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