Tag: Larry King

Churchill, Obama, and the Sacking of Generals

Churchill, Obama, and the Sacking of Generals

“It is dif­fi­cult to remove a bad Gen­er­al at the height of a cam­paign: it is atro­cious to remove a good Gen­er­al.” —Churchill

Oba­ma and McChrys­tal (White House pho­to by Pete Souza, Wiki­me­dia Com­mons).

What can we learn by com­par­ing Pres­i­dent Obama’s dis­missal of Gen­er­al McChrys­tal to Churchill’s dis­missals of Gen­er­als Wavell and Auchin­leck, two dis­tin­guished com­man­ders in World War II? I hope it will not be anoth­er reminder of how stan­dards of con­duct have dete­ri­o­rat­ed.

Dif­fer­ences first. Churchill’s gen­er­als were removed for not suf­fi­cient­ly oppos­ing Irwin Rommel’s Afri­ka Korps. McChrys­tal was not under­per­form­ing, and his sit­u­a­tion bears more resem­blance to that of Gen­er­al Dou­glas MacArthur, the Kore­an com­man­der relieved in 1951 by Pres­i­dent Tru­man for insub­or­di­na­tion.…

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Obama and the Churchill Bust -Out

Obama and the Churchill Bust -Out

 

Ever since the BBC and The Dai­ly Tele­graph revealed that Pres­i­dent Oba­ma had sent George W. Bush’s Jacob Epstein Oval Office bust of Win­ston Churchill pack­ing (while retain­ing the bust of Abra­ham Lin­coln),  the media has been abuzz with spec­u­la­tions over the implied sym­bol­ism.

Per­son­al­ly I think the media just demon­strates its degen­er­ate irre­spon­si­bil­i­ty to keep fan­ning these non- issues. Fifty years ago a dif­fer­ent media would have pub­lished some thought­ful pieces on the future of the US-UK rela­tion­ship. Not any more.

Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose….When Pres­i­dent Bush had a Churchill bust in the Oval Office, zealots would occa­sion­al­ly demand its return, since in their view Bush was unde­serv­ing, or was using it to pro­claim him­self anoth­er Churchill.…

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