Saturday, May 1, 2010

What admiral has the courage?

In recent years, many whose duty it was to defend the hallowed traditions and the unique culture of their profession declined to do so when their voices were most urgently needed. Some are guilty of the ultimate disloyalty: To save or advance their careers, they abandoned the very ideals of their profession in order to curry favor with politicians…. What admiral has had the courage to risk his own career by putting his stars on the table, and defending the integrity of the process and of his people?

If the Navy is to regain its soul and its respect, the answer lies in the right kind of leaders. Leaders who understand that the seemingly arcane concepts of tradition, loyalty, discipline, and moral courage have carried the Navy through cyclical turbulence in peace and war.... It is time to give the Navy back to such leaders.

Where are the senior officers who are supposed to step forward and defend their institution when it’s being torn apart? The number-one tradition in the military is loyalty from the top down: Take care of your people.

—From a James Webb speech to the Naval Institute, April 1996
Former Secretary of the Navy
Current Senator from Virginia

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