Best Defense

The greed of the generals (II): two questions

I’m interested that in all the e-mails I’ve gotten, and responses posted on this blog about triple-dipping retired generals getting paid to “mentor” the active duty military while at the same time working in the defense industry, and also collecting their pensions, not a single person has contended that, yes, George Marshall would approve of ...

574934_091118_RicksGeorgeMarshall2.jpg
Portrait: US Army (USA) General (GEN) George C. Marshall. (Uncovered), (Exact date shot UNKNOWN).

I’m interested that in all the e-mails I’ve gotten, and responses posted on this blog about triple-dipping retired generals getting paid to “mentor” the active duty military while at the same time working in the defense industry, and also collecting their pensions, not a single person has contended that, yes, George Marshall would approve of this behavior. As a friend of mine says, this is a good gut-check: WWGMD?

Also, another friend points out that one of the dangers of this whole “mentoring” this is that if you are not careful, you wind up bringing in people who simply reinforce existing prejudices, instead of challenging them. For example, just how well mentored was Gen. Tommy R. Franks in his mishandling of Afghanistan in 2001-02 and then in his bungled invasion of Iraq in 2003? (And while we’re on the subject of money, who remembers that Franks charged a group $100,000 to help them raise money for wounded vets — and that it later turned out that the group only delivered 25 percent of its funds to its supposed beneficiaries?) WWGMD?

Department of Defense

Thomas E. Ricks covered the U.S. military from 1991 to 2008 for the Wall Street Journal and then the Washington Post. He can be reached at ricksblogcomment@gmail.com.

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