Oct 27, 2012 No Comments ›› Pat Dollard
The latest hot rumor flying around the internet is that General Ham of Africon, whose departure was announced last week, was actually fired for attempting to buck Obama’s order not to rescue Ambassador Stevens. He’s not exactly leaving early for his type of command, plus, he’s still in command, I have to assume, since his replacement still has to be confirmed by the Senate. Even if it’s an urban legend, it’s such a cool one that it’s kind of a duty to pass it on. Here’s the text most-often seen in emails, message boards and blog posts:
I heard a story today from someone inside the military that I trust entirely. The story was in reference to General Ham that Panetta referenced in the quote below.
“(The) basic principle is that you don’t deploy forces into harm’s way without knowing what’s going on; without having some real-time information about what’s taking place,” Panetta told Pentagon reporters. “And as a result of not having that kind of information, the commander who was on the ground in that area, Gen. Ham, Gen. Dempsey and I felt very strongly that we could not put forces at risk in that situation.”
The information I heard today was that General Ham as head of Africom received the same e-mails the White House received requesting help/support as the attack was taking place. General Ham immediately had a rapid response unit ready and communicated to the Pentagon that he had a unit ready.
General Ham then received the order to stand down. His response was to screw it, he was going to help anyhow. Within 30 seconds to a minute after making the move to respond, his second in command apprehended General Ham and told him that he was now relieved of his command.
The story continues that now General Rodiguez would take General Ham’s place as the head of Africon.
I found this story when I got home after hearing this story.
President Barack Obama will nominate Army Gen. David Rodriguez to succeed Gen. Carter Ham as commander of U.S. Africa Command and Marine Lt. Gen. John Paxton to succeed Gen. Joseph Dunford as assistant commandant of the Marine Corps, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced Thursday.
And here’s an article about him leaving his command last week:
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama will nominate Army Gen. David Rodriguez to succeed Gen. Carter Ham as commander of U.S. Africa Command and Marine Lt. Gen. John Paxton to succeed Gen. Joseph Dunford as assistant commandant of the Marine Corps, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced Thursday.
Both appointments must be confirmed by the Senate.
Rodriguez is the commander of U.S. Army Forces Command and has served in a “variety of key leadership roles on the battlefield,” Panetta said.
He’s “a proven leader” who oversaw coalition and Afghan forces during the surge in Afghanistan, and “was the key architect of the successful campaign plan that we are now implementing,” Panetta said.
In announcing Ham’s successor, Panetta also praised the work Ham has done with Africa Command.
“Gen. Ham has really brought AFRICOM into a very pivotal role in that challenging region,” Panetta said. “I and the nation are deeply grateful for his outstanding service.”
Last week, Panetta announced that Assistant Commandant of the Marine Corps Gen. Joseph Dunford will succeed Gen. John Allen as the top commander in Afghanistan. Thursday, he said Paxton will step into Dunford’s current position.
Paxton is the commander of U.S. Marine Corps Force Command, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Europe and Fleet Marine Force Atlantic. Panetta called Paxton “an exceptionally capable leader” who will join the “growing cadre of senior military leaders who have deployed to combat theaters… throughout their careers.”