Tags: Fred, Politics
In a couple of the comment threads the issue of politics has come up along with the question of whether politics should even be part of the discussion. In the recent post “Which child do you sell first?” reader ‘RickWilmes’ writes:
Two issues remain for me.
1. How does the USNI blogging community solve the claim of bringing politics into the discussion when the topic IS about politics? For me, personally, when I see this issue being raised then I know the individual raising such a claim has a weak position on the issue. I think it is a subtle form of argument from authority or intimidation. Not quite sure which but this issue needs to be addressed and solved so that it is no longer raised in future topics. – Link to his whole comment
So, lets discuss the issue. I would think that there is room to discuss politics in most every subject posted here, provided that the author didn’t frame the post ‘Operationally speaking’ or used other wording that clearly limits the subject.
Subjects, such as those concerning funding, homeporting, policy, etc. probably are more connected to political issues than say flight deck operations, fighting a fire, ship stability, Gravity, etc…
Sometimes, it appears that politics frame and even limit how/if operations are conducted, such as deciding to board an Iranian ship, deciding if and how to conduct anti-pirate operations, deciding to build a new class of ship, deciding to order additional units of whatever after the DoD decided that they don’t want any more of them, deciding not to close bases that the Military would like to close, etc…
I would think that Rules of Engagement are often drafted keeping in mind the possible political implications that operating under those rules might create. Those rules might even be compromised to be less than ideal because of possible negative political implications.
However, at the end of the day, I would think that Navy Policy flows down to the Sailor with his assigned duty in running the ship or Marine or Seal with his finger on a trigger, all with tasks and goals they need to accomplish. I would think that there is little politics to be brought in at that level and I doubt that those carrying out their jobs are thinking what sort of ‘heat’ the President is going to have to face because of what they just did or didn’t do.
This subject does brings up a good point in that the head of the military is a Politician. Only politics can take a budget increase for the military and make it look like a cut in funding. And with that, feel free to discuss politics in your comments on this thread. Do so on other threads using your best judgment.
Posted by Fred Fry