According to today's Times, General Stanley McChrystal has taken control of Special Operations forces in Afghanistan. To those of us who assumed that the commander for the region already had control of those forces, it came as a bit of a surprise. Who was in charge before he decided to take over? Donald Rumsfeld?
Special Forces, you see, appear to have been responsible for an outlandish share of the civilian casualties McChrystal says he hopes to avoid. It seems those Green Berets and Navy Seals and such like have been trained to be very efficient — albeit not especially discriminating — killers. Men, women, children, chickens, goats, insurgents, non-insurgents, armed, not armed, who the fuck cares? They're just more towelheads — or, in the terminology of an earlier war — just gooks.
Barack Obama, who hopes to be the first American president to win a war since Harry Truman, does not seem to understand that not even the best military leaders can control the military personality, the military ethic, and the military quest for advancement by spilling blood. I think it possible that McChrystal understands, though. Maybe, if we elected him president, he would get us out of Afghanistan.
Where the fuck is Eisenhower when you need him?
In the meanwhile, nobody seemed to pay attention to the content of Patrick Kennedy's rant the other day, when he attacked the press for its failure to cover Dennis Kucinich's attempt to get us out of Afghanistan in 30 days. Sadly, all they heard was the noise.
Had it not been for the noise, of course, they would have heard nothing.