Defence Secretary Mad Dog Mattis?

The Herald reports:

General James “Mad Dog” Mattis, who for years oversaw US war efforts in the Middle East and was yesterday touted by Donald Trump as a possible defence secretary, did not come by his nickname lightly.

Mattis, who is 66, commanded a marine battalion during the First Gulf War and a marine division during the 2003 invasion of Iraq. In 2010, the tough-talking native of Washington state was named to head the US Central Command. That gave him authority over troops in Iraq, where he helped develop a counterinsurgency approach before overseeing the US withdrawal, and Afghanistan, where he implemented a troop surge. It also gave him responsibility for an area including Syria, Yemen and Iran.

Previously, he led the US Joint Forces Command and a Nato command charged with preparing the alliance’s forces to meet future challenges.

he earned the nickname “Mad Dog” with his battle-hardened swagger and the sort of blunt language marines are famous for.

He has been quoted as saying: “Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet.”

Some of his other quotes include:

  • “You cannot allow any of your people to avoid the brutal facts. If they start living in a dream world, it’s going to be bad.”

  • “If in order to kill the enemy you have to kill an innocent, don’t take the shot. Don’t create more enemies than you take out by some immoral act.”

  • “I come in peace. I didn’t bring artillery. But I’m pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you f— with me, I’ll kill you all.”

  • “The first time you blow someone away is not an insignificant event. That said, there are some a–holes in the world that just need to be shot. There are hunters and there are victims. By your discipline, you will decide if you are a hunter or a victim.”

  • “We’ve backed off in good faith to try and give you a chance to straighten this problem out. But I am going to beg with you for a minute. I’m going to plead with you, do not cross us. Because if you do, the survivors will write about what we do here for 10,000 years.”

  • “I don’t lose any sleep at night over the potential for failure. I cannot even spell the word.”

  • “A country that armed Stalin to defeat Hitler can certainly work alongside enemies of Al Qaeda to defeat Al Qaeda.”

  • “Marines don’t know how to spell the word defeat.”

  • “The most important 6 inches on the battlefield is between your ears.”

  • “PowerPoint makes us stupid.”

  • “Find the enemy that wants to end this experiment (in American democracy) and kill every one of them until they’re so sick of the killing that they leave us and our freedoms intact.”

  • “You are part of the world’s most feared and trusted force. Engage your brain before you engage your weapon.”

Also a good read is the letter he wrote to his troops in 2003.

A scholar of warfare, he is said to have a personal library of more than 7000 volumes. And as a lifelong bachelor, he has another nickname: the “Warrior Monk”.

Sounds like an exciting choice for Defence Secretary, if he gets it.

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