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UPDATE: President-elect Donald Trump has selected General James “Mad Dog” Mattis as his defense secretary, according to multiple media reports.

Original story below.


General James “Mad Dog” Mattis is arguably the most famous U.S. Marine alive. The mere mention of his name can make a room go silent in some circles.

His legendary status was not handed out arbitrarily — it was earned through his actions on and off the battlefield.

Mattis formally retired as CENTCOM commanding general in 2013 after serving his country with valor for four decades.

After a short stint in retirement, he may soon be taking on an even bigger military role under a Trump administration. President-elect Donald Trump confirmed he is actively considering Mattis as his defense secretary.

Image Credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images
Alex Wong/Getty Images

Yes, that sound you just heard was ISIS shuddering at the thought.

Here are 5 reasons “Mad Dog” Mattis would be an absolute nightmare for ISIS:

1. He has bled on the battlefield for this country.

KANDAHAR - JANUARY 14: (FILE PHOTO) United States Marine General James N. Mattis walks on the American military compound at Kandahar Airport January 14, 2002 in Kandahar, Afghanistan. Mattis has been criticized for saying "It's fun to shoot some people" on February 1, 2005 during a strategic forum on the war on terror. Mattis, the commanding general of the Marine Corps Combat Development Command in Quantico, Virginia, was quoted as saying. "Actually, it's a lot of fun to fight. You know, it's a hell of a hoot. ... It's fun to shoot some people. I'll be right upfront with you, I like brawling." He added, "You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil," Mattis continued. "You know, guys like that ain't got no manhood left anyway. So it's a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them." (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Mario Tama/Getty Images

Gen. Mattis “didn’t just talk the talk” as a military leader, he also “walked the walk,” according to retired Marine John R. Guardiano. He reportedly wrote in the American Spectator:

He led from the front. Indeed, on at least one occasion that I know of, the General was bloodied from a firefight or improvised explosive device while out on patrol with junior, enlisted Marines one-third his age. That’s what makes Gen. Mattis such a great warrior: He truly respects and cares for his Marines.

“Guardiano,” he told me, “I don’t give a damn about the officers. If they don’t like what they’re doing, they can get on a plane and leave the Corps — go back where they came from. But I do care deeply about those 18- and 19-year-old Lance Corporals out on the frontlines.”

Image Credit: Chris Kleponis/AFP/Getty Images
Chris Kleponis/AFP/Getty Images

In February 1, 2005, Mattis was quoted as saying.

“Actually, it's a lot of fun to fight. You know, it's a hell of a hoot. It's fun to shoot some people. I'll be right upfront with you, I like brawling.”

A general who is prepared to fight alongside his troops on the front lines? Now that’s the kind of leader America’s servicemen and women deserve.

2. He will kick your ass.

US marine general James Mattis is seen on September 9, 2009 aboard the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower off the coast of Norfolk, Virginia. A French air force general made NATO history on September 9 by becoming the first non-American to assume a supreme command post. At a landmark ceremony aboard the USS Dwight D. Eisenhower moored off Norfolk, Virginia, Stephane Abrial became head of Allied Command Transformation, replacing outgoing US marine general James Mattis. AFP PHOTO/JOEL SAGET (Photo credit should read JOEL SAGET/AFP/Getty Images)
Joel Saget/AFP/Getty Images

A main reason Mattis is currently being considered for defense secretary is his impressive history of success on the battlefield. There doesn't appear to be much — if any — criticism of his leadership.

Col. Mike Groen, who was a lieutenant colonel on Mattis’ staff during the Iraq War, said the general was always “a week ahead of everyone else.”

“He would tell you to do something, and you would scratch your head and say, ‘Hmm, I don't really understand why we're doing this.' Three, four, five days later, the light bulb would go off and you would say, ‘Holy smoke, this is what he was talking about!,’” Groen said after Mattis retired in 2013.

Image Credit: Antonio Scorza/AFP/Getty Images
Antonio Scorza/AFP/Getty Images

Mattis “oversaw the deepest insertion of Marines into a combat zone in U.S. history” with great success, according to The Military Times.

Mattis' leadership style is summarized perfectly by the letter he reportedly gave to his Marines, which Lt. Col. Joseph Plenzler, who served as Mattis' public affairs officer in 2003, said many kept inside their body armor. The most memorable line reads:

“Demonstrate to the world, there is ‘No Better Friend, No Worse Enemy' than a U.S. Marine.'”

3. He will tell you how much he is going to kick your ass.

Image credit: Shah Marai/AFP/Getty Images
Shah Marai/AFP/Getty Images

• “I come in peace. I didn't bring artillery. But I'm pleading with you, with tears in my eyes: If you f*** with me, I'll kill you all.” (The Military Times)

• “The first time you blow someone away is not an insignificant event. That said, there are some a**holes in the world that just need to be shot. There are hunters and there are victims. By your discipline, you will decide if you are a hunter or a victim.” (Business Insider)

• “Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.” (Business Insider)

• “I don't lose any sleep at night over the potential for failure. I cannot even spell the word.” (Business Insider)

• “The most important 6 inches on the battlefield is between your ears.” (San Diego Union Tribune)

• “We’ve backed off in good faith to try and give you a chance to straighten this problem out. But I am going to beg with you for a minute. I'm going to plead with you, do not cross us. Because if you do, the survivors will write about what we do here for 10,000 years.” (Business Insider)

4. “Mad Dog” doesn't play politics when it comes to radical Islam

Image Credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images
Alex Wong/Getty Images

Many say in order to defeat your enemy, you must first understand and your enemy — and Mattis seems to understand the threat posed by the depraved ideology of radical Islam. He's also witnessed and fought radical Islam on the battlefield.

Here's what Mattis had to say in 2015 about the “enemy” in Afghanistan:

“Gains achieved at great cost against our enemy in Afghanistan are reversible. We may not want this fight, but the barbarity of an enemy that kills women and children and has refused to break with al-Qaeda needs to be fought.”

That seems pretty definitive. Now, watch his answer on how to combat radical Islam:

In a 2015 interview with The Wall Street Journal, Mattis also showed he has done his own research on radical Islam, tracing the “problem” with the religion all the way back to the days of Prophet Muhammad:

“The problem with Islam goes back to the day of the prophet, when he dies and it splits into two halves. And at that point, they have an internal war, that’s kept waxing and waning over the years… between the Sunni and the Shia. The first time that I think I can find jihad in our presidential papers is with Thomas Jefferson. And for the Marine Corps we got ‘to the shores of the Tripoli’ in our song from that campaign.”

“This is not new and it has gone on for a long time. Obviously, it’s in a waxing phase — it’s getting stronger. I think the first question you have to ask is as you try to make sense out of all this: Is political Islam in our best interest?”

5. If you have any final doubts, here is his note to the troops under his command on the eve of the Iraq War


Good luck dealing with this guy, ISIS. You're gonna need it.

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