Admiral McRaven Speaks Out

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Admiral McRaven Speaks Out

Postby toucana on August 16th, 2018, 5:37 pm 

McRaven.jpg
Admiral William H. McRaven

Back in 2011 US intelligence analysts believed they had tracked down the hiding place of Osama Bin Laden inside Pakistan. A furious debate took place within the administration over whether to take the risk of launching a SEAL team raid into Pakistan to kill him. John Brennan then DCI, and head of the CIA, argued forcefully in favour of the raid, and won the backing of President Obama who green-lit the operation.

When it came to the detailed planning and execution of the raid, there was only one man considered for the job. He was Admiral William H. McRaven, commander of the U.S. Joint Special Operations Command (2011-2014).

Yesterday, President Trump stripped retired former DCI John Brennan of his security clearances for daring to criticise his administration’s recent policy towards Russia. Today retired Admiral William H. McRaven spoke out on behalf of John Brennan in an op-ed carried in The Washington Post

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/revoke-my-security-clearance-too-mr-president/2018/08/16/8b149b02-a178-11e8-93e3-24d1703d2a7a_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.8745f1130e00

Dear Mr. President:
Former CIA director John Brennan, whose security clearance you revoked on Wednesday, is one of the finest public servants I have ever known. Few Americans have done more to protect this country than John. He is a man of unparalleled integrity, whose honesty and character have never been in question, except by those who don’t know him.

Therefore, I would consider it an honor if you would revoke my security clearance as well, so I can add my name to the list of men and women who have spoken up against your presidency.

Like most Americans, I had hoped that when you became president, you would rise to the occasion and become the leader this great nation needs.

A good leader tries to embody the best qualities of his or her organization. A good leader sets the example for others to follow. A good leader always puts the welfare of others before himself or herself.

Your leadership, however, has shown little of these qualities. Through your actions, you have embarrassed us in the eyes of our children, humiliated us on the world stage and, worst of all, divided us as a nation.

If you think for a moment that your McCarthy-era tactics will suppress the voices of criticism, you are sadly mistaken. The criticism will continue until you become the leader we prayed you would be.

Last edited by toucana on August 16th, 2018, 6:10 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Admiral McRaven Speaks Out

Postby Serpent on August 16th, 2018, 5:52 pm 

Thanks, Toucana. That made my day far less bleak than I expected it to be.

PS Didn't he train a sheep-herding pig?
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Re: Admiral McRaven Speaks Out

Postby toucana on August 16th, 2018, 6:32 pm 

PS Didn't he train a sheep-herding pig?

Don't know anything about that.

He did resign quite recently from his position as Chancellor of Texas University Austin, although that decision was said to have been driven in part by personal health factors. McRaven was diagnosed with lymphocytic leukaemia in 2010.

https://www.texastribune.org/2017/12/15/ut-system-chancellor-bill-mcraven-will-resign-may/

What I do think is that Trump could hardly picked a fight with a more dangerous and influential figure within the higher echelons of the U.S military command chain than this man.
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Re: Admiral McRaven Speaks Out

Postby mitchellmckain on August 16th, 2018, 6:43 pm 

I don't think it about the power and influence of those Trump picks a fight with.

It is about the obvious abuse of power which Trump indulges in for which there is no justification.

I am sorry but the example of Stalin comes to mind and I have to wonder if the only real difference is that the president of the U.S. just doesn't have the power to kill opponents and slaughter civilians that Stalin had. He did, however, have the power to take children away from their parents, and that seems pretty low to me. Thus the only restraints I am seeing are the restraints of the U.S. system of government.
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Re: Admiral McRaven Speaks Out

Postby Serpent on August 16th, 2018, 10:11 pm 

toucana » August 16th, 2018, 5:32 pm wrote:
PS Didn't he train a sheep-herding pig?

Don't know anything about that.

Never mind; silly joke. The man bears an uncanny resemblance to James Cromwell in the movie, Babe.
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Re: Admiral McRaven Speaks Out

Postby toucana on August 17th, 2018, 6:07 am 

Rachel Maddow's twenty minute segment on this story for MSNBC last night can be found here.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sXTy99W8jsw

She makes three compelling points:
i. Trump isn't just silencing critics by withdrawing clearances. He is obstructing potential witnesses as well by removing their access to their own files and archives which they would need to prepare for congressional questions about their knowledge of Russian attacks on US electoral processes, and any corrupt collusion by members of team Trump with the Russian intelligence agencies they might have classified knowledge of.

ii. There would be nothing to prevent president Trump from withdrawing the security clearances of Robert Mueller's investigators as well, which could halt the Special counsel's investigation in its tracks.

iii. On previous form one would now presumably expect the Fox News TV channel which has been acting as a propaganda wing of the Trump administration to start attacking and denigrating Admiral William McRaven as well.

As Rachel observes
But for the life of me, in all honesty, I don't know what happens after that.
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Re: Admiral McRaven Speaks Out

Postby Braininvat on August 17th, 2018, 12:37 pm 

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/08/16/opinion/donald-trump-john-brennan-security-clearance.html?action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=opinion-c-col-left-region&region=opinion-c-col-left-region&WT.nav=opinion-c-col-left-region

If you've read more than 4 articles on the NYT this month and thus hit a paywall, you can use Incognito mode with your browser to read this. It assembles some fairly compelling facts as regards Trump's intentions towards those who disagree with his policies and style of governance.
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