SecDef Mattis Candidly Talks Domestic Social Strife With Troops In Impromptu Speech

Mattis gives a uniquely insightful off-the-cuff speech surrounded by his beloved troops.

byTyler Rogoway|
U.S. Air Force photo


Mattis has said time and time again that the only reason he came out of retirement to become Donald Trump's Secretary of Defense was so he could get back working with and for the troops in field. He clearly sees America's soldiers, sailors, airman, and marines as a class of their own and is known to give off-the-cuff talks to groups of them whenever he can. 

During these impromptu speeches he seems to let much of his guard down and offers unique insights into his thinking on various topics. He recently discussed the future of America's nuclear triad in a uniquely frank manner with submariners in Washington state. Now he has done the same with soldiers in the middle east, but this time the topic was about the recent spate of social strife here in the United States.

As usual, Mattis provided multiple memorable quotes in the short speech, including:

"We'll go out here, we'll fight alongside our friends and allies, and were gonna keep right on fighting until they're sick of us and leave us alone."

Yet the purpose of his speech seemed to be to reassure his troops that things will get better at home:

"Your buying time, your a great example for our country right now, it's got some problems, you know it and I know it. It's got problems we don't have in the military. And you just hold the line my fine young soldiers, sailors, airman, and marines. You just hold the line until our country gets back to understanding and respecting each other, showing it, being friendly to one another, that Americans owe to one another, we're so dog gone lucky to be Americans."

Mattis continued to illustrate in an abstract way how he sees America and its ability to project power, stating:

"We've got two powers, the power of inspiration, we'll get the power of inspiration back, and we have the power of intimidation, and that's you if someone wants to screw with out families, our country, or our allies. "

Then Mattis explained why he was there:

"I flunked retirement ok, the only reason I came back was to serve alongside young people like you who are so selfless and frankly, so rambunctious. It's a pleasure to be around you all."

Here's the whole video, it's is well worth the watch:

I am going to leave it there because analyzing his words could go many different directions politically speaking, especially in relation to the actions of his boss, President Donald Trump. Suffice it to say that Mattis truly is a unique figure and has become a shining star and source of stability for the turbulent Trump Administration. 

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