The Perfumed Princes of the Pentagon
If you're not familiar with the term "Perfumed Prince," take a look at Air Force LTG Jay Silveria, Commander of the Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs.
Silveria achieved the national spotlight by chewing out the entire class over racial slurs posted on five cadets' quarters. Months later, it turned out that one of the targets was actually the perpetrator.
Here are some bullet points from a field manual.
Get the facts, before you act.
Solve problems at the lowest level.
Concede a mistake.
Praise in public, reprimand in private.
General "Knee-Jerk" violated all of them. When confronted with his error, he replied that this had to be said anyway. Apparently, he was conflating the Charlottesville protests with his own command, not to mention a likely disdain for his commander in chief.
But here we have an intelligence failure. Charlottesville may well have been a false flag operation. So was the "hoax" at Silveria's academy. Intelligence must be timely and adequate. Silveria was spot-on with time but dismally inadequate despite plenty of open source information, aka "news".
The general ranted himself into an ambush.
Wonder why we don't win wars?
Colonel David Hackworth coined the term "Perfumed Princes" to describe the leaders who sidestepped the Vietnam disaster and infested the senior ranks, playing the academic or business manager while they squeezed out soldiers on the soggy end.
But Silveria's rant went beyond careerism. Silveria ordered everyone to video his rant on their cell phones to make sure his spiel went prime-time. Everyone from Senator McCain to Joe Biden heaped the praise. The Washington Post opined, "Too bad Trump can't emulate the military when it comes to matters of race."
"Eau de Diversity" is the fab fragrance of the Perfumed Princes as required by the political elite.
Martin Dempsey, 18th chairman of the Army chief of staff, 2011-2015, persisted with the hyphenated American being our strength to the end of his career. Never mind that the attack at Fort Hood in 2009 was perpetrated by a Muslim-American Army psychiatrist-major. Of this, Gen. George W. Casey, Jr. chimed in at the time, "as horrific as this tragedy was, if our diversity becomes a casualty, I think that's worse."
The tragedy was that Hasan's behavior had been scaring the pants off his colleagues in Army mental health, of all places, for years. But they understand. Diversity comes first.
The tragedy was that the Army maintained that firing some 140 rounds in a medical processing center while yelling "Allahu akbar" was "workplace violence" until 2015, when a funding bill forced the Perfumed Princes to reclassify the incident as "combat-related." Until then, all the dozens of victims had been denied appropriate benefits and the Purple Heart, thirteen awarded posthumously.
Marine staff sergeant Joseph Chamblin was punished for having urinated on a Taliban corpse five years ago. The conviction was overturned this November, after discovering that then-general Amos had interfered in the judicial proceeding. Amos wanted this sort of thing "crushed."
Chamblin maintains that he made the incriminating video as a propaganda ploy, "because if an infidel touches the body, they're not going to Mecca or paradise." This is right out of Brigadier General John Pershing's successful tactics in the Philippines, 1909-1913, not to mention Clausewitz's concept of "the will" and of knowing one's enemy. Of course, the opponents are "diverse," or they wouldn't be at war to begin with.
Chamblin is luckier than Lt. Clint Lorance, who is serving a twenty-year sentence for opening fire on suspected Taliban scouts when they ran his check point. Lorance is one of the Leavenworth 10, referring to a fluctuating number of U.S. servicemen serving time while known terrorists are released from GITMO.
This isn't a matter of holding ourselves to higher standards. It's a matter of having no standards at all. Despite having made "war on terrorism" for sixteen years, the Perfumed Princes have yet to provide guidance – neither on trying terrorists nor on how novel rules of engagement translate into traditional military jurisprudence. It's all just fine, just the way it is, whatever it is, even with terms more generous to the enemy than to our own troops, who are just canonical cannon fodder.
Two Navy SEALs are presently under investigation for the death of Green Beret Logan Melgar in Niger. (Where is Niger, anyway? ) Pilfering money from a fund intended to pay informants may be involved. Funds like this are tempting. That is their military purpose. Proper administration requires multiple levels of oversight so that everyone up the chain has to be complicit if anyone pilfers. External audits look for money spent with no results.
But the Perfumed Princes don't really care about money. They don't care about results, either. Congress appropriates money it borrows from a printing press and dumps it into an Authorization for the Use of Military Force that doesn't have any milestones. How can anyone audit that?
A rule of thumb is that if pacification hasn't succeeded in seven years, then the insurgency has won, or another insurgency has taken its place. Parallel wars can spin off as long as someone's around with a gripe and guns. Our "war on terror" has become another "war on poverty" or "war on crime." But that's fine just the way it is with the Perfumed Princes. Funding, anyone?
The latest snafu is a recruit shortage. No kidding! Word gets around. Bradley Manning gets a pardon. Bowe Bergdahl walks on a dishonorable discharge. Clint Lorence remains in jail. Got it! Corrective action is to waive mental disorders, a novel solution even for an army as committed to diversity as ours.
Understand: the Perfumed Princes are not lowering the standards. The perfumed policy is to forward waivers for evaluation in the light of "new knowledge" about mental disorders. The mental health evaluators are Nidal Hasan's colleagues. They understand. Numbers count.
There also remains a large body of "old knowledge" in which homosexual behavior indicates mental disorders.
Bradley Manning received counseling regarding his sexual problems as required by regulation and cognizant authority. The problem here is that cognizant authority is a Perfumed Prince. It took a full-blown act of treason and espionage to reach the proper diagnosis.
American elites are killing America. But when our most focused, disciplined, and universal institution withers, it's time to stop, smell the roses, and pin the carnations. Perfumed Princes are not going to fall on their own swords.
Bowe Bergdahl and Bradley Manning are of grotesquely inadequate characters, but it's not to avoid jail that they enlisted. 'Twas a time when a judge could offer enlistment, in certain cases, in lieu of jail. It put a burden upon the military, but not an unusual one. Numbers count. Some didn't make it, although many did, under military leaders. But that's not what LTG Silveria is training up. God knows this generation is hurting for leaders like what no generation America has ever bred.