And Harry, General Petraeus really is nothing more than a political hack with ribbons who betrayed the brave troops in Iraq, betrayed the US military and betrayed the country when he spun the truth to push George W. Bush's non-policy in Iraq.
Rick Perlstein on Petraeus:
On September 11, General David Petraeus betrayed his office and abdicated his duty when he let himself be ventriloquist's dummy for a disingenuous propaganda campaign designed to hold American troops hostage in Iraq and keep up the useless carnage indefinitely, exploiting cherry-picked or even invented statistics, under cover of the stars on his shoulder.Rick has more.
I don't know how you can disagree with that at this point. But don't take my work for it. Take theirs:
- Chuck Hagel called his performance "a dirty trick on the American people... It's not only a dirty trick, but it's dishonest, it's hypocritical, it's dangerous and irresponsible."
- The chief of CentCom, Admiral William Fallon thinks Petraus is "an ass-kissing little chickenshit" for the way he sucks up to politicians.
- This army wife points out: "General Petraeus is using normal circumstances and turning them into some big idea.... I don't understand how this can be called a troop reduction since Andy was already scheduled to to come home in November and was not scheduled to return to Iraq."
- This retired colonel says: "To pretend that this plan is a product of some real-decision making by General Petraeus is appalling, and I'm sure the Marines in this is appalling, and I'm sure the Marines in this unit and their families are not happy about being used... It's deceitful and ultimately destructive to the credibility of the military and the Bush administration."
One member of the DC punditry gets it right. Michael Kinsley on the "outrage" over the MoveOn ad:
It's all phony, of course. The war's backers are obviously delighted to have this ad from which they can make an issue. They wouldn't trade it for a week in Anbar province (a formerly troubled area of Iraq that is now, thanks to us, an Eden of peace and tranquillity where barely a car bomb disturbs the perfumed silence — or so they say). These days, mock outrage is used by every side of every dispute. It's fair enough to criticize something your opponent said while secretly thanking your lucky stars that he said it. The fuss over this MoveOn.org ad is something else: it is the result of a desperate scavenging for umbrage material. When so many people are clamoring for a chance to swoon that they each have to take a number and when the landscape is so littered with folks lying prostrate and pretending to be dead that it starts to look like the end of a Civil War battle re-enactment, this isn't spontaneous mass outrage. This is choreography.The real problem with the MoveOn ad was not that infamous last sentence. The real problem was that the material before it was true and everyone knew it. That includes those who are the most "outraged".