Small Wars Journal

Michael Flynn: Trump is Like the Chariot Driver in ‘Ben-Hur’

Michael Flynn: Trump is Like the Chariot Driver in ‘Ben-Hur’ by David Ignatius, Washington Post

Of the many puzzles posed by President Trump’s administration, the role of the National Security Council is among the trickiest. The NSC usually tries to act as an “honest broker” among Cabinet agencies. But how will it function under a headstrong president who sees his role as disruptor and tweeter-in-chief?

This challenge falls to national security adviser Michael Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general who holds a position once filled by such luminaries as Henry Kissinger, Zbigniew Brzezinski and Brent Scowcroft. His NSC got off to a controversial start with a directive installing chief strategist Stephen K. Bannon on the principals committee and initially reported as reducing the role of the military and intelligence chiefs.

The NSC membership list upset critics, but its practical effect will probably be limited. If Bannon is going to play a big (and disruptive) role in national security, maybe it’s better for him to operate within the NSC structure than to go directly to the president. And in an administration where two top Cabinet positions are held by retired four-star generals, the military won’t lack for influence.

The larger issue is stability and coherence of policy. Stephen Hadley, who served as national security adviser for President George W. Bush, explains: “Trump is an insurgent president leading a populist movement. He came in with an agenda that was disruptive and destructive - throw over the money changers’ tables. The next six months will see destruction, some of it creative and some just destructive…

Read on.

Comments

Outlaw 09

Wed, 02/08/2017 - 2:51am

BTW....the Flynn reference on the Ben Hur comment....appears the author did not know he has used that same very comment twice in the past four months....

Secondly, while this interview appears to make Flynn a "milder and thoughtful version of the past 18 months of Flynn....the question is why the author failed to actually ask Flyn what he was thinking when he led the RP Convention chant of "Lock her up...lock her up"...WHEN he himself badly violated security regulations when he leaked deliberately highly sensitive information to the Pakistan Intel Service leading to the deaths of three Americans....and his next step General's promotion delayed fro a full year as punishment....

Had it been you or me..we would have landed in jail and for a long time for that single security violation....AND we would have never ever gotten a new TS/SCI security clearance which he now has.....

He also did not bring up the "removal for cause" for his firing at DIA for his poor management style....so what did he improve in that style since his hiring that would reflect on a better overall managed NSC....???

BTW....if you are ever fired for cause from any employment during your S/TS security review YOU better have an extremely long and detailed excuse for the firing as it will be held against you during the review....and potentially you can actually lose your clearance over the firing....Flynn evidently had a good excuse...or he basically he lied around the true cause which is common....

Lastly, the author failed to dive into the countless Flynn tweets and comments of what many inside DIA stated were "Flynn Facts"...meaning Flynn has a tendency to run down the rabbit hole of conspiracy theories ESPECIALLY when it comes to Islam...Muslims and radical jihadists....