I have often argued that General Petraeus’ intervention in American domestic politics to sell the “surge” was an inappropriate violation of the norms of civil-military relations. I hope that this report suggests that the Obama Administration is not going to promote a repeat. Civilian leaders discuss strategic-level policy matter. Yes, the ought to draw heavily on military expertise and advice in their private deliberations. But it is simply unhealthy for active-duty officers to participate in domestic debates directly.
The Pentagon is rebuffing congressional calls for the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan to personally make the case for the war, amid the growing political tumult over the Obama administration’s handling of the conflict.