I saw the other day that the head of the newly formed U.S. Space Force, Lt. Col. Matthew Lohmeier, had been dismissed from his position after shooting his mouth off on a conservative podcast.*
I thought the story was interesting and instructive in that it revealed much about the former Trump’s Administration’s problems. Simply put, Lohmeier was a political officer. I mean, he was not averse to saying what he thought about what is going on in Washington and the nation. And, what he said, was doubtless music to the collective ears of 45’s White House. In the podcast, in a book he wrote, and in his public statements, he has said that Marxism is taking over the country, is intent on destroying the US military, and needs to be opposed.
The Final Frontier...
It wasn’t clear exactly where he thought this Marxism was coming from. Last I checked, there wasn’t much of it left in the world. Russia isn’t the USSR any more. China says it’s still socialist, but seems way more interested in money and power than it is in Revolution.
But that didn’t matter. Lohmeier said what a Trumpeter would want to hear.
Ah, but there’s the rub. There is a time and a place for political officers who speak their minds. And the Space Force in 2021 is definitely not one of them. A new service, whose mission is still to be clearly defined (exactly what does it do that the Air Force wasn’t doing just as well before?), and whose very existence is under debate, most certainly does not need a commander who is going to be a lightning rod for universal criticism. What it needs is an iron-willed but soft-spoken diplomat who can smooth ruffled feathers in other services, build good relations with a justifiably suspicious news media, and reach out to a public which is wondering just exactly what it is paying its taxes for.
In other words, it doesn’t need a Patton. It needs an Eisenhower.
But a statesman-like Ike was the very last thing that the Trump White House wanted. It didn’t want someone who would build something that would last. It wanted someone whose every word would taunt the libtards and win votes from the base. It wanted, in other words, not a general but a culture warrior.
Which, I think, is the whole problem. The Trump Administration was, and the current GOP is, far, far too focused on winning elections. The hard fact is that culture warriors may win the base at home, but they don’t necessarily win the war abroad.
And they most certainly do not built institutions…not to mention whole branches of the Armed Services…
Until next time…
Onward and Upward.
Copyright©2021 Michael Jay Tucker
*Source: “Space Force commander fired after comments made on conservative podcast,” by Kristen Holmes and Barbara Starr, CNN, Updated 0420 GMT (1220 HKT) May 17, 2021, https://edition.cnn.com/2021/05/15/politics/space-force-lohmeier-fired-after-comments/index.html