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Chain of Command

USS Theodore Roosevelt

Captain Brett Crozier was recently relieved of his naval duties. Why? In military service, the role of the chain of command is analagous to that of law in the relationship between ethics and morality. In the words of a navy commander, the chain of command is …

Ingrained in us from the moment (we) set foot in boot camp … the only proper channel for conducting legitimate operations …

To break the chain of command would require a situation of such gravity and/or breakdown in leadership and communication that it is the only remaining option!

Commander Aaron Carlton
United States Naval Chaplain Corps

Captain Brett Crozier inferred that if he were in actual combat, he would have muddled through the COVID-19 chaos, but since these operations were conducted during peacetime conditions, there was no reason for sailors to perish unnecessarily.

The President of the United States is the Commander in Chief of our armed forces. In the last few months, Donald J. Trump has had the misfortune of being at the crossroads of a worldwide pandemic, the consequent worst unemployment rate since the Great Depression, and massive race riots in response to police brutality in several cities across the country. 45 has not helped himself with his own militant rhetoric, in contrast to the position of Mark Esper, his current Secretary of Defense.

As mentioned before in previous posts of how the CEO sets the corporate ethos of the company, the President analogously has a major influence on the tone and tenor of the country. Like a master chef, the President creates the broth and adds key ingredients for either a healthy or heinous aroma in the kitchen. Each day, American citizens are forced to eat from the United States Cafeteria.

Is our country in a place of such societal gravity that intervention is needed? Previous secretary of Defense James Mattis seems to think so. For so long, he has not wanted to interfere with this current administration, in order to allow them maximum freedom to do their job. But like Captain Brett Crozier, he has finally felt the only option is to speak out against the chain of command / his superior officer, “Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not … even pretend to try to unite the American people.”

His parting rejoinder to the master chef’s claim (per FOX News) that he believes he’s (been) treated worse than Abraham Lincoln, who was assassinated.

We know that we are better than the abuse of executive authority that we witnessed in Lafayette Park. We must reject and hold accountable those in office who would make a mockery of our constitution. At the same time, we must remember Lincoln’s “better angels,” and listen to them, as we work to unite.

Only by adoptng a new path–which means, in truth, returning to the original path of our founding ideals–will we again be a country admired and respected at home and abroad.

Former National Security Advisor James Mattis
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