Friday, September 03, 2010
A milestone was quietly reached this week with the appointment of General Lloyd James Austin III to lead the effort in Iraq (pretty massive milestone). Austin is the first Black General to lead an entire war effort in a major theater of operations. There have been other Black Generals who have led significant components of wars and conflicts in the past, but they were never number one. There have also been Black commanders of Army divisions and a Black Joint Chiefs Chairman (but that is mostly an advisory position.... not an operational one). Austin has himself led Divisions, and also became the first Black Division commander to lead troops into war (again in Iraq in 2003). He was also the ground commander for all multinational forces (#2) under General Ordiono, from 2008 onward.
Although I didn't support the war.... I support the troops. And it is always good to see a Black American in charge... showing the Country and the World that Blacks (especially Black men) can do more than behave like criminals, or minstrels on BET or "Empty-V". I love it.
However, he has been handed a mess IMO. Don't be fooled by the nonsense suggesting that the war is completely over. The U.S. has already taken a few more casualties and combat (although less intense) will continue.
Still hoping that Iraqi's decide to provide for their own security and eventually decide to form a new government.