President Bush is completely unwilling to allow the Congress to limit his ability to make war. He's the 'Decider.' The Commander-in-Chief.
Unless he's not.
Now he seeks a 'War Czar.'
The White House is considering creating a "war czar" post in the National Security Council and has put out feelers to some retired generals to see if they would be interested.
But no takers so far. The Washington Post said at least three retired four-star generals approached by the White House in recent weeks had turned down the position.
First, what is our facination with having Czars? Seems kind of contrary to democratic ideals. A Intelligence Czar after 9/11. A Drug Czar before that.
More importantly, isn't this what the President is supposed to be? The commander-in-chief? How is this supposed to improve anything? The President surely does not lack for advisers. He has a Sec. of Defense (at least now he does that Rumsfeld is gone), as well as the Joint Chiefs, a CIA director, and the list goes on. How could adding one more layer of bureaucracy, one more choke point for information, going to improve the situation on the ground?
It won't. Which is part of the reason no one seems willing to do the job.
So why the position? Probably for Bush to try to find a relatively high profile military man to provide him with some political cover for his botched job in Iraq. Which is probably the other reason that no one seems willing to take the job. What retired general wants to be the whipping boy for this mess?
Certainly not retired Marine Gen. John "Jack" Sheehan, a former top NATO commander who rejected the White House overture. He says, "The very fundamental issue is, they don't know where the hell they're going."
Rep. Rahm Emanuel hit it on the head with his criticism of the White House for wanting to create a war czar, "Someone needs to tell Steve Hadley that position is filled, it's the commander-in-chief, unless the decider's become the delegator."