Skip to comments.Gen. Franks Doubts Constitution Will Survive WMD Attack
Posted on 11/20/2003 5:14:53 PM PST by hope
Gen. Franks Doubts Constitution Will Survive WMD Attack
John O. Edwards, NewsMax.comGen. Tommy Franks says that if the United States is hit with a weapon of mass destruction that inflicts large casualties, the Constitution will likely be discarded in favor of a military form of government.
Friday, Nov. 21, 2003
Franks, who successfully led the U.S. military operation to liberate Iraq, expressed his worries in an extensive interview he gave to the mens lifestyle magazine Cigar Aficionado.
In the magazines December edition, the former commander of the militarys Central Command warned that if terrorists succeeded in using a weapon of mass destruction (WMD) against the U.S. or one of our allies, it would likely have catastrophic consequences for our cherished republican form of government.
Discussing the hypothetical dangers posed to the U.S. in the wake of Sept. 11, Franks said that the worst thing that could happen is if terrorists acquire and then use a biological, chemical or nuclear weapon that inflicts heavy casualties.
If that happens, Franks said, ... the Western world, the free world, loses what it cherishes most, and that is freedom and liberty weve seen for a couple of hundred years in this grand experiment that we call democracy.
Franks then offered in a practical sense what he thinks would happen in the aftermath of such an attack.
It means the potential of a weapon of mass destruction and a terrorist, massive, casualty-producing event somewhere in the Western world it may be in the United States of America that causes our population to question our own Constitution and to begin to militarize our country in order to avoid a repeat of another mass, casualty-producing event. Which in fact, then begins to unravel the fabric of our Constitution. Two steps, very, very important.
Franks didnt speculate about how soon such an event might take place.
Already, critics of the U.S. Patriot Act, rushed through Congress in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, have argued that the law aims to curtail civil liberties and sets a dangerous precedent.
But Franks scenario goes much further. He is the first high-ranking official to openly speculate that the Constitution could be scrapped in favor of a military form of government.
The usually camera-shy Franks retired from U.S. Central Command, known in Pentagon lingo as CentCom, in August 2003, after serving nearly four decades in the Army.
Franks earned three Purple Hearts for combat wounds and three Bronze Stars for valor. Known as a soldiers general, Franks made his mark as a top commander during the U.S.s successful Operation Desert Storm, which liberated Kuwait in 1991. He was in charge of CentCom when Osama bin Ladens al-Qaeda attacked the United States on Sept. 11.
Franks said that within hours of the attacks, he was given orders to prepare to root out the Taliban in Afghanistan and to capture bin Laden.
Franks offered his assessment on a number of topics to Cigar Aficionado, including:
President Bush: As I look at President Bush, I think he will ultimately be judged as a man of extremely high character. A very thoughtful man, not having been appraised properly by those who would say hes not very smart. I find the contrary. I think hes very, very bright. And I suspect that hell be judged as a man who led this country through a crease in history effectively. Probably well think of him in years to come as an American hero.
On the motivation for the Iraq war: Contrary to claims that top Pentagon brass opposed the invasion of Iraq, Franks said he wholeheartedly agreed with the presidents decision to invade Iraq and oust Saddam Hussein.
I, for one, begin with intent. ... There is no question that Saddam Hussein had intent to do harm to the Western alliance and to the United States of America. That intent is confirmed in a great many of his speeches, his commentary, the words that have come out of the Iraqi regime over the last dozen or so years. So we have intent.
If we know for sure ... that a regime has intent to do harm to this country, and if we have something beyond a reasonable doubt that this particular regime may have the wherewithal with which to execute the intent, what are our actions and orders as leaders in this country?
The Pentagons deck of cards: Asked how the Pentagon decided to put its most-wanted Iraqis on a set of playing cards, Franks explained its genesis. He recalled that when his staff identified the most notorious Iraqis the U.S. wanted to capture, it just turned out that the number happened to be about the same as a deck of cards. And so somebody said, Aha, this will be the ace of spades.
Capturing Saddam: Franks said he was not surprised that Saddam has not been captured or killed. But he says he will eventually be found, perhaps sooner than Osama bin laden.
The capture or killing of Saddam Hussein will be a near term thing. And I wont say thatll be within 19 or 43 days. ... I believe it is inevitable.
Franks ended his interview with a less-than-optimistic note. Its not in the history of civilization for peace ever to reign. Never has in the history of man. ... I doubt that well ever have a time when the world will actually be at peace.
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Read more on this subject in related Hot Topics:
George W. Bush
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Apologies accepted, I think. But I still don't understand how you could take what I wrote and see it as a lefty loving attack (just the word "left" made me roll over in my grave even though I am not yet dead!). Did you read the post that I responded to wrongly? That can happen.
More than that, I don't get the part about why you would owe me any benefit of the doubt since my post in question is pretty clear if read correctly. So if you are apologizing because you acknowledge that you misread the post, then what doubt would there be on your part? I am curious...
I agree wholeheartedly with Franks assessment.
(Boo-hoo...Sniff, snuffle...Wipes tears and nose...Gathers composure...) How could you think that I would think that? I am a Freeper, not a troll. GWB is one politically saavy, intelligent, ingenius, handsome, God-guided gentlemen. And he likes the outdoors and animals. He is a 10 all around. I think Laura Bush is one of the luckiest women and we are the luckiest nation to have GWB.
Yeah, I do see that one reference in that quote that can throw people off; I saw that part of the quote as being further "qualified" by General Franks though. T that is why I agree with Gen. Franks' comments 100 percent and I even go further: I already believe GWB is remarkably gifted and we are remarkably blessed; I do not have to wait for history to pass a judgement, in other words.
Hope, I like the fact that you are a quick defender of our President. Good job!
Isn't that Queen Amidalla? [scratching head]
I would submit that the *temporary* imposition of martial law in a region of the country where there is no alternative... that is... the local government has been destroyed and the only alternative is lawlessness and looting by thugs... then it is NOT the case that democracy has been abandoned, and it would not follow that we "have stopped believing in democracy".
Quite the opposite. Democracy demands that order be maintained, does it not? Even if the government is dead?
Guess you didn't read my post all the way. I said I would consider Martial Law depending on locale and situation. Hugo? I remember Hugo as well. I also know that Hugo was a natural disaster that EVERYONE KNEW would pass. WMD strike is a wild card.
I am talking about this talk of doing away with the constitution and replacing it with a military government...that's not the same.
If some General Clark tries to make himself the big boss, he won't last long. Loyal officers will be looking for the senior surviving official in the line of succession, no matter what WMD attack we suffer.
Of course, if smallpox etc is loose, the President may decide to eforce virtual marial law in selected areas to prevent the spread of the disease. To do less could be national suicide.
If the nation is wiped out, the Consitution won't matter, will it?
What got my dander up and caused me to get out into the cold mountain air up here was this talk about the constitution being set aside and being replaced with a military government. Franks may indeed not advocate or support this...he may just be postulating...but any military, GSA or politician who did would make themselves an enemy IMHO.
I would fight that tooth and nail just as I would fight any foreign invader.
Best Fregards and my apologies to anyone I may have offended...not for my sentiment of commitment...but perhaps for the way it was delivered this evening in the heat of the moment.
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