Thursday, December 22, 2016

An Accurate But Unwisely Stated Opinion?

While I disagree with the president's decision in cooperation with the Canadian prime minister to fence off Arctic drilling, I do find it unusual and undesirable that a serving American senior officer would publicly complain about the decision:

Commenting, General Joseph Ralston, Supreme Allied Commander of NATO Europe and Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said: “I am deeply concerned by today’s announcement taking steps to permanently remove Arctic waters from potential development through executive action. Not only does today’s move run counter to our national security interests in the region, it significantly sets back our ability to encourage responsible economic development and infrastructure, as well as our military’s ability to leverage these assets to project presence in the Arctic.

“The reality is that as Arctic ice continues to recede, military, commercial and human activity by friends and potential foes alike is already underway and will only increase. U.S. leadership in the Arctic requires participation and cooperation on all fronts. Without the prospect for commercial investment, our nation’s ability to lead and engage on Arctic issues is diminished. Today’s decision represents yet another strategic withdrawal from the Arctic by the Obama Administration.”

Excuse me? That's advice and opinion that should be given in private to the current and future president, and not something said out loud.

This is so odd that I wonder if it is accurate. I never heard of the trade publication (which means nothing, I admit). Was the statement off the record and printed by mistake?

Seriously, I wouldn't be shocked if General Ralston resigns before the year is out.

That kind of public rebuke of the president just shouldn't be done. Even if I think Ralston is right on the issue itself.