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Obama Had Pentagon On A Short Leash, Now Trump Is Letting The Leash Go

Former President Barack Obama was known for keeping the Pentagon on a tight leash. Any military plans, particularly when it came to fighting the Islamic State, were comprehensively scrutinized by the White House. The National Security Council were required to implement the former president's agenda, every aspect of which was overseen by Mr. Obama. Despite his high level of control, the former president failed to do something he promised along the campaign trail in 2008: defeat ISIS.

President Donald Trump hasn't even been in office for three months, but already he's handed the military reigns to his staff. The military has greater autonomy under President Trump, particularly in fighting ISIS, according to the Pentagon. The Commander-in-Chief frequently defers to his Secretary of Defense, Jim 'Mad Dog' Mattis, when it comes to military strategy.

The POTUS has vowed to defeat ISIS, and has allowed the Pentagon to ramp up the efforts. The Marine Corps is increasing artillery and the Army is putting boots on the ground. The deployment of hundreds more are in the works as the Pentagon conspires with local forces to strategically seize territory.

"Jim Mattis has been given the latitude to conduct military operations in the way he sees best," said a Pentagon spokesperson.

Critics point out that an unchained military could be a disaster. Sending in more forces could not only be cost many military lives, but could increase the civilian death rate.

But some are more concerned that the former president's micro-management was ineffective, and only prolonged conflicts to allow ISIS to grow. "The level of micromanagement was incredible, and of course by the time you work your way through the NSC process your target has moved," said U.S. Congressman Mac Thornberry (R-TX 13th District).

Keeping the military on a leash has done nothing to prevent civilian deaths. The Pentagon reports that since 2014, there have been 220 unintentional civilian casualties. London researcher and journalist collective, known as Airwars, say the number is easily ten times that amount.

It remains to be seen whether President Trump’s approach will be more effective than President Obama’s was, but for now the decisions are in the hands of those who are prepared to make them.

Source: Mail Online
Photo: Mail Online, Hawaii Army Weekly

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