- By Thomas E. RicksThomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military for the Washington Post from 2000 through 2008. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A research-prone reader sends this interesting note:
Thought you may find it interesting that, with GEN McKiernan’s dismissal and the appointments of LTGs McChrystal & Rodriguez to command positions in Afghanistan, every 3- and 4-star general officer exclusively directing the ongoing wars will soon be a West Point graduate:
“War Czar” LTG Doug Lute ’75
USCENTCOM CG GEN David Petraeus ’74
MNF-I CG GEN Ray Odierno ’76
MNC-I CG LTG Charles Jacoby ’78 (who recently replaced LTG Lloyd Austin, ’75)
MNSTC-I CG LTG Frank Helmick ’76
ISAF/USF-A-designate LTG Stan McChrystal ’76
New Operational Commander (MNC-I equivalent) LTG David Rodriguez ’76
Additionally, the new ambassador to Afghanistan is Karl Eikenberry is USMA ’73.
That’s not bad, considering that West Point expelled dozens of cadets for cheating in a 1976 scandal — but I think from the class of ’77, which doesn’t appear on the above list, perhaps because of its unusually high attrition rate.
Meanwhile, another officer notes that the guys who have been criticized, fairly or unfairly, are disproportionately not from WPCC:
GEN Tommy Franks, OCS (CENTCOM)
GEN John Abizaid, USMA ’73 (CENTCOM)
GEN George Casey, ROTC (MNF-I)
GEN Dan K. McNiell, OCS (ISAF)
GEN David McKiernan, ROTC (ISAF)
LTG Ricardo Sanchez, ROTC (CJTF-7/MNC-I)