Tuesday, October 30, 2007

The Irreplacable Officer

Victor Davis Hanson is concerned about the safety of our man in Iraq, General David Petraeus:

My only worry about him is that he travels extensively, in helicopters and Humvees, in places recently secured and less so. Rarely has a war rested so much on the shoulders of one officer, and his safety, it seems to me, is critical to this nation’s effort. That may sound absurd in the modern age, where protocol and technology have supposedly relegated the human dimension to a secondary role. But it is true, nonetheless.

Indeed, it is difficult imagining a victory in Korea without Matthew Ridgeway. I don’t think Lincoln would have been reelected without Sherman in Atlanta. No other Union general could have replicated his march through Georgia and the Carolinas.

In truth, there are thousands of officers like a workmanlike Henry Halleck, George Meade, Mark Clark, Omar Bradley, or Courtney Hodges, but rarely a US Grant, Nathan Forrest, George Patton, or Curtis LeMay. The perception of Iraq, and I think it is earned, is that a single American officer set off a chain of events that have turned around an entire war. So let us hope that this irreplaceable officer keeps safe and healthy to finish the task at hand.

All I can do is say a prayer each night for our courageous general and his selfless soldiers fighting for a free Iraq.