Retired four-star general and Fox News military analyst Gen. Jack Keane says disagreeing with President Barack Obama can be dangerous for the careers of military leaders.
In a radio interview on Kilmeade & Friends, Keane said there is a pattern of generals who disagree with the president leaving the military earlier than expected.
“It’s also a fact that a number of our general officers, not all of them but a number of them, were asked to leave before what would normally be accepted as the routine tenure for that particular position, and Gen. (James) Mattis is a case in point who had very strong views on Iran,” Keane said.
Keane has been a longtime critic of Obama’s foreign policy prescriptions, even going so far as to warn Congress that we are losing the war with Islamic State, and adding, “Moreover, I can say with certainty that this [Obama’s] strategy will not defeat ISIS.”
“Gen. (Micheal) Flynn, who you know very well and had on your show, was an outspoken proponent for understanding radical Islam, how dangerous this particular threat was and was trying to communicate that, he was not able to serve out his full tenure,” Keane told host Brian Kilmeade. “So yes, that’s another fact that we can substantiate, that there were generals who did leave earlier than what their tenure would be and the characteristic they all shared together is they did disagree with the administration on various points.”
Keane explained that when Obama declared his intention to defeat ISIS, he severely restricted the military’s options right from the beginning.
According to Keane, a normal military campaign procedure usually includes officials putting together different plans, each one detailing the various levels of risk. The president then makes a judgment call based on the plan, something that never happened under the current administration.
Obama wanted no boots on the ground and no civilian casualties for the air campaign. These demands hampered efforts to swiftly defeat ISIS.
When discussing the Iranian nuclear deal, Keane pointed out that Iran always cheats and the only reason we know that is not because of inspection, but because of informants. Iran is attempting to show it is the dominant power in the Middle East and the U.S. is no longer a strong ally.
Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump echoed the concerns of Keane on Wednesday during the nationally televised “Commander in Chief” forum.
“I think under the leadership of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, the generals have been reduced to rubble,” Trump told host Matt Lauer.
“They have been reduced to a point where it’s embarrassing to our country. … And I can just see the great, as an example, Gen. George Patton spinning in his grave as ISIS, we can’t beat.”
Retired Lt. Gen. Flynn echoed Trump’s sentiments, telling Fox and Friends on Thursday the Republican nominee was “absolutely right.”
“I mean, there’s a lot of frustration within the ranks and there’s a lot of frustration I know in the senior leadership about what we’re not able to do,” Flynn added.
Flynn acknowledged that he thought Trump respected the military and its leaders, and had refreshing solutions that are completely opposite to those coming from the Obama administration.
“Donald Trump has enormous respect for our military, for our military leaders and he also said last night for our intelligence professionals,” Flynn said. “I know I have been in a couple of these intelligence briefings that have been in stark contrast to the policy decisions we are seeing coming out of this White House. So this is a very dangerous time.”