Report: Trump held private, enlisted-only Afghanistan war meetings

| December 28, 2019

ChipNASA sends us an interesting article on how President Trump wanted a straight-from-the-warfighters analysis of the War on Terror’s progress and other issues. Careful what you ask for, Sir. You’ll likely get it.

– ‘No generals or officers, only enlisted guys that have been there’

Since taking office, President Donald Trump has been meeting with enlisted troops to get a better understanding of how they feel the war in Afghanistan has been progressing.

Trump did not want to meet with higher ranking officers, instead choosing to meet with enlisted troops to get a more candid assessment of the America’s longest-running war, Business Insider reported.

“I want to sit down with some enlisted guys that have been there,” Trump reportedly told advisers, according to Peter Bergen, author of “Trump and His Generals: The Cost of Chaos.”

“I don’t want any generals in here. I don’t want any officers,” he added.

Enlisted members of the military may have been seen as better able to critique the war effort as their roles tend to place them closer to combat and the consequences of a command. Enlisted members are also less concerned with the day-to-day politics that might affect higher ranking officers.

Trump continues to impress, and he gets unvarnished accounts about the war in Afghanistan, NATO, and morale on the ground. Read the rest of the article here: American Military News

Thanks Chip. I’ll just leave this here:

“Enlisted men are stupid, but extremely cunning and sly, and bear considerable watching.” U.S. Army’s Officer Guide, 1863.

Category: Afghanistan, Donald Trump, Guest Link, GWOT, Military issues, NATO

Comments (18)

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  1. 5th/77th FA says:

    The FIRST Rule of leadership is you talk to/listen to the people that know how to do the job that you want done. Business Management 101. The business of the Military is winning wars. We haven’t shown a real profit in a long time. Go around the bean counters and get to the ones at the pointy end of the spear.

  2. Mason says:

    More actual leadership. Refreshing.

  3. rgr1480 says:

    And the photo shows two 1LTs taking selfies with him!

    Yah, I know it’s the press’s fault; still….

  4. Anonymous says:

    Trump and Milley serving chow at Bagram:

  5. says:

    I’m just picturing a bunch of SGTMAJs obliviating and thinking this is their moment to shine. I picture the conversation including the following:

    “Well sir, the problem is we don’t have enough PT belts on our guys”

    “Yeah and facial grooming standards are degrading operational effectiveness. How do you expect troops to get a good sight picture when their mousetaches keep getting in the way?”

    Rumor is warrant officers weren’t invited because they never show up to formation.

    • Mason says:

      Can’t forget all the walking on the grass. If the president needs to fix anything, it’s more no walking on the grass signage.

      • Anonymous says:

        Don’t forget not wearing a proper belt or wearing a boot that not on the approved list.

      • Penguinman000 says:

        I don’t have PTSD from the war. I’ve got it from walking on the grass at regiment and raking lines in the sand outside of the company office.

  6. Devtun says:

    Probably should limit it to E-6 & below. Senior noncom level gets political as they have more day to day face time w/ field grades & GOs.

    • rgr769 says:

      Yeah, I never met a CSM in the Army who hadn’t perfected the skill of kissing commander ass.

      • 11B-Mailclerk says:

        CSM Macintosh (RIP)

        He should be a life-sized poster in every enlisted barracks “Aspire to be -this- man”

        I was told he was selected for Brigade and Division CSM, and turned down both “to stay with soldiers”.

        An E-8 (1SG in name only) decided that to relieve crowding in his barracks, he would kick out anyone drawing an allowance for quarters for a “wife back home with the folks”. The e-8 shitbag had a bunch of favored NCOs solo in 5-man rooms. A kid came to my mailroom, and asked for his mail, then asked “how do I dial the boss?” (The Division Commander’s private gripe line). I extracted the story from him, stuck I’m “guarding the mailroom” to keep him out of the line of fire, then told the situation to CSM McIntosh.

        (Distinct V.I. accent, to me) “I’ll have every fucking NCO living in fucking tents before one Private gets kicked out.”

        Ever hear of a person wearing 1SG rank locked up at parade rest while a CSM burns him to a cinder for unprofessional conduct? -Epic-

        CSM McIntosh should have been cloned and issued to every battalion. Failing that, he should have been the selection board for 1SG and CSM.

        If anyone thinks I am unworthy to judge, Kratman put him in his books as the Exemplar of NCO.

        Lord I miss him.

        • OldSoldier54 says:

          “Ever hear of a person wearing 1SG rank locked up at parade rest while a CSM burns him to a cinder for unprofessional conduct? ”

          I would have given much to see that.

        • rgr769 says:

          I will add I also have an exception to my over-generalization above. CSM Ray Alegria. He was my initial first sergeant on AD. He ended his career as CSM for Sixth Army HQ at the Presidio. He was one helluva NCO. He taught me a great deal about how to lead our young paratroopers. It paid dividends in the Viet of the Nam. I still wear the SF belt buckle he gave me when I last saw him in 1987 or ’88, several months before he retired at 30 plus years of service.

  7. Graybeard says:

    Admiral Nimitz, in WWII, said his best ideas frequently came from the enlisted men. He was open to advice and opinions from all ranks.

    He also was very successful in the Pacific Theater. Because he did not limit himself to ‘expert’ opinions.

  8. OWB says:

    If you want to cut to the chase, ask the Guard/Air Guard enlisted the same questions. Since they have full time jobs to get back to, they can tell you what is REALLY needed to get the job done and get everybody home.

  9. Frank says:

    To think that the Roman Legions managed to “cope” for over 1000years despite their streamlined C&C set up (10,100, 1000)…

    I wonder if the Space Force will have a more streamlined set up? Waste and theft in military procurement are endemic in over officered organisations.