No comment needed

From Sarah Hoyt

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9 Responses to No comment needed

  1. Severus says:

    What is absolutely horrific about this, is that the commanding General of AFRICOM is being relieved. GEN Carter Ham is being relieved and the rumor is that he is being relieved because he was about to buck POTUS and send in the FAST anyway after he was told to stand down. Apparently a few minutes before he was to send in the FAST he was grabbed by his deputy and told that he was relieved of command. If this is even remotely true, it is beyond the pale. The bottom line is that the White House was terrified of having another Desert 1….another failed rescue. Another Jimmy Carter analogy….so we let good men die. Men who either asked for help earlier (the Ambassador) or did what was honorable and brave (the former SEALs). This is beyond horrible, it is repugnant and cowardly.

  2. Registered User says:

    I heard some of what Severus said over in the comments on Diplomad the other day. There was a counterargument on Ace claiming, among other things, that it is about the usual time for putting a new commander in charge of AFRICOM. Also, apparently Ham was in command of AFRICOM on September 24th.

    http://www.africom.mil/getArticle.asp?art=8331&

    via

    http://ace.mu.nu/archives/334311.php

    via

    http://thediplomad.blogspot.com/2012/10/dont-go-rescue-them.html

    I’m personally more spooked over the ‘white collar’ guy on
    http://thediplomad.blogspot.com/2012/10/the-benghazi-emails-and-some.html I dunno about what he says, I’d like to see a lot more information before I come to any firm conclusions about exactly what happened.

    Again, http://xkcd.com/1127/ is more my speed. I’m much more comfortable voting against Obama on the basis of the 1860s-1930s than I am on the basis of what we can guess or infer about the fine details of his most recent foreign policy disasters. Of course, the gross details trump both the historical record and what we, or at least what I, can know can know about the fine details before the election.

    I do not, and cannot, have enough personal expertise about military contingency planning and special operations to come to any firm conclusions about the fine details of what happened. I do not have the classified information, much less the relevant documents, and likely would not have the background to evaluate them if I did. I must rely on sources, because I do not know things like whether it is possible to relieve officers for disobeying orders, and then reinstate them when the orders are no longer relevant.

    Unless I see a comprehensive essay by Tom Kratman on the details before the election, which I suspect won’t happen, I expect to be still evaluating the reliability of sources on November 11. Even if Romney wins, I dunno about my having a narrative of what exactly went on that I’d be willing to trust by Christmas.

    ‘Obama ruins everything he touches’ is easy, explains much of everything this administration, and is probably true to some degree. Exactly what happened, and exactly what crimes he is culpable of, to a degree of quality able to stand up in court? I expect a whole lot more work. I dunno.

    I tend to the ‘pardon him for the good of the country’ school of thought.

  3. Registered User says:

    Re: My comment here in moderation. Or not.

    Severus, Wretched over at the Belmont Club is reporting that AFRICOM did not have the “commander in-extremis force,” at the time. Combine that with what Ace is saying about Ham being in command after Sept 11th, and I’m suspecting an incorrect rumor. I’ve just read it, so I’m still rethinking things.

  4. Severus says:

    There were other options, many other options. The CIEF group was to be follow on if they could not mobilize. There was a Marine FAST group in the Med at the time; there was also a company sized element at the 173rd that could have reacted. Granted they might not have been as good but they more than likely could have pulled it off. Even if the groups were to come in successive “waves” you could have theoretically pulled this off. The simple horrible fact remains the same: the administration left them to die. They did not, could not afford another Desert 1 and they left good men to die in the dirt.

    Being “relieved of command” as opposed to “removed from command” is a subtle but important difference. The rumor is that GEN Ham was relieved, possibly temporarily. You could be correct, that this is nothing but baseless rumor but right now the boys in AFRICOM are very quiet and that has not been their style starting with Ward. Something stinks….

  5. Severus says:

    Also….after doing some homework and asking about the painfully obvious. The lack of a CIEF group stinks even more. Every COCOM has one and to say that AFRICOM didnt is either an absolute lie or by and large one of the greatest derlictions of duty that I have heard of. AFRICOM was established in 2008 (?) if memory serves and if the powers that be are saying that the CIEF team wasnt prepped and ready after four (4) years of its creation well then kiddies, there is a huge problem. That and the fact that EUCOM is all but defunct and have limited claim over the 173rd. In fact the 173rd has a AFRICOM rep that is a part of the BDE+ staff. So no, Im not buying that one.

    That and if that scenario is really somehow the case and the CIEF group was not there and currently on “holiday” in Narnia then the next question is, just where the hell was the Trans-Saharan Counter Terrorism Initiative boys and all of there groupies that are tucked away in there Coop Security Locations like ticks in their Forward Operating Sites? Im just curious is all….being the dumbass redneck that I am….

  6. Registered User says:

    Thank you for the information.

    I’m probably on the least informed end of the spectrum, for this issue, of commentators here.

    AFRICOM website states ‘AFRICOM began initial operations on Oct. 1, 2007, and officially became an independent command on Oct. 1, 2008.’. It says 2000 personal with 75% of those at the headquarters. I didn’t check how this compares to the other commands, and I figure that lots of forces controlled by the command would not count against this number.

    One thought is that that going from five to six at a time when manpower and funding are holding steady or being cut may well lead to a situation where the new guy is less prepared. Still a scandal, but a different sort of scandal.

    Another is that the anonymous official may be lying, or that the newspaper Wretched cited was lying or confused.

    The caller in to Rush was saying that the in-extremis force was supposed to part of the standard process for responding to events like this. Suppose that the resources for the standard process were not there, and it hadn’t been needed before by AFRICOM*. With the part of the track record I can see from open sources, I’m not seeing any for sure and certain ability on the part of the administration to make decisions and cause the military to coherently execute them.

    If there was a screw-up that disabled everything that happened automatically, maybe the other options required permission. If it required the permission of a specific administration official, the choice could have been made through simple incompetence and dithering. If it required the authority of multiple officials or officers, comprehensive mismanagement could have made the decision of no decision without intentionally deciding anything.

    So I guess the devil’s advocate position is that maybe it is incompetence rather than stupidity. Staggering levels of incompetence, that I might well still be underestimating. Immediately after it happened, I hadn’t been aware that rescue was necessarily possible, much less something that should have happened automatically as a matter of course. I’m still quite confused about what exactly happened that day.

    As far as me being correct goes, I’m one of the multiple conflicting theories types. I’m pretty certain I’m in wait and see mode now.

    A minimum of six more days of spinfest.

    *If the standard process doesn’t work, and you need to try and use it enough, eventually, someone will either get the standard process working, or codify and make a practice of the ad hoc work around.

  7. Marcus says:

    Apologies… it took a bit before I saw your post awaiting approval in queue.

    At least it is up now.

  8. Registered User says:

    No worries.

    I could have avoided moderation if I had written it a different way, and hindsight is suggesting that there were other things about it I should have written better. I don’t know that having it up earlier would have added all that much.

    And I screwed up in the last comment I made this post/thread. I said ‘incompetence rather than stupidity’ when I should have said ‘cowardice’ or something about actively choosing the malicious option instead of ‘stupidity’.

    And now I know to be careful about the links.

  9. Severus says:

    The story has now hit MilitaryCorruption.com. Granted, with that being said, that doesnt mean that it will break out and spread across the land or that it is even completely true, but these guys seem to have a nose for the truly terrible cover-ups and have caused much trouble in the past for those who wished a bad news story to simply die and go away or not be told. Lets see where it goes….

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