Behind Petraeus’s Resignation

Exclusive: The resignation of CIA Director David Petraeus over an extramarital affair marks a stunning reversal for the longtime media darling. But some in President Obama’s inner circle are not displeased the neocon-friendly ex-general is gone, reports Robert Parry.

By Robert Parry

The messy departure of CIA Director David Petraeus over an extramarital affair removes the last high-ranking neoconservative holdover from George W. Bush’s administration and gives the reelected President Barack Obama more maneuvering room to negotiate a settlement over Iran’s nuclear program.

Petraeus’s resignation along with a public acknowledgement of an affair, reportedly with an admiring female biographer, raised eyebrows in Washington for reasons beyond the sudden and humiliating fall of the high-flying former four-star general. Normally, in such situations, a cover story is used to spare someone of Petraeus’s stature embarrassment.

David Petraeus, a two-star general during the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, with Lt. Gen. William S. Wallace.

Especially in the days after a president’s reelection, it would not be uncommon for a senior official to announce new career plans or a desire to spend more time with the family. Instead, Petraeus’s resignation was accompanied by an admission of the affair. Press reports identified the woman as Paula Broadwell, who co-authored a biography of Petraeus, All In: The Education of General David Petraeus.

One person familiar with the Obama administration’s thinking said President Obama was never close to Petraeus, who was viewed as a favorite of the neoconservatives and someone who had undercut a possible solution to Iran’s nuclear program in 2011 by pushing a bizarre claim that Iranian intelligence was behind an assassination plot aimed at the Saudi ambassador to Washington.

As that case initially evolved, the White House and Justice Department were skeptical that the plot traced back to the Iranian government, but Petraeus pushed the alleged connection which was then made public in a high-profile indictment. The charges further strained relations with Iran, making a possible military confrontation more likely.

Petraeus’s Input

At the time, Washington Post columnist David Ignatius, a favored recipient of official CIA leaks, reported that “one big reason [top U.S. officials became convinced the plot was real] is that CIA and other intelligence agencies gathered information corroborating the informant’s juicy allegations and showing that the plot had support from the top leadership of the elite Quds Force of the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps, the covert action arm of the Iranian government.”

Ignatius added that, “it was this intelligence collected in Iran” that swung the balance. But Ignatius offered no examples of what that intelligence was. Nor did Ignatius show any skepticism regarding Petraeus’s well-known hostility toward Iran and how that might have influenced the CIA’s judgment.

As it turned out, the case was based primarily on statements from an Iranian-American car dealer Mansour Arbabsiar, who clumsily tried to hire drug dealers to murder Saudi Ambassador Adel Al-Jubeir, though Arbabsiar was actually talking to a Drug Enforcement Agency informant. Arbabsiar pled guilty last month as his lawyers argued that their client suffers from a bipolar disorder. In other words, Petraeus and his CIA escalated an international crisis largely on the word of a person diagnosed by doctors of his own defense team as having a severe psychiatric disorder.

Despite the implausibility of the assassination story and the unreliability of the key source, the Washington press corps quickly accepted the Iranian assassination plot as real. That assessment reflected the continued influence of neoconservatives in Official Washington and Petraeus’s out-sized reputation among journalists.

The neocons, who directed much of President George W. Bush’s disastrous foreign policy and filled the ranks of Mitt Romney’s national security team, have favored a heightened confrontation with Iran in line with the hardline position of Israel’s Likud Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In the post-election period, it is a top neocon goal to derail Obama’s efforts to work out a peaceful settlement of the dispute over Iran’s nuclear program. The neocons favor “regime change.”

Suspect Loyalties

Petraeus’s ideological alignment with the neocons threatened to undercut the administration’s unity behind Obama’s peace initiative. Thus, according to the person familiar with the administration’s thinking, some key figures close to the President wanted Petraeus out and there was no sadness that his personal indiscretions contributed to his departure.

Regarding the facts behind Petraeus’s sudden resignation, the New York Times reported that the FBI had begun an investigation into a “potential criminal matter” several months ago that was not focused on Petraeus. It was in the course of an their inquiry into whether a computer used by Petraeus had been compromised that agents discovered evidence of the relationship as well as other security concerns. About two weeks ago, FBI agents met with Petraeus to discuss the investigation, the Times reported.

According to the Times, one congressional official who was briefed on the matter said Petraeus had been encouraged “to get out in front of the issue” and resign, and that he agreed.

Though held in high esteem by Official Washington for his role in advocating “surges” of U.S. troops in Iraq in 2007 and in Afghanistan in 2009, Petraeus actually has a less than sterling record of military success. He was in charge of a trouble-plagued effort to train a new Iraqi army after the U.S. invasion in 2003, and his supposedly successful “surge” in Iraq was more a public relations success than a change in the strategic trajectory toward ultimate U.S. failure there.

The Unsuccessful Surge

The reality regarding the Iraq “surge” in 2007 was that much of the reduction in violence in Iraq derived from policies of Petraeus’s predecessors, including the implementation of the so-called Sunni Awakening which involved paying off Sunni tribal leaders to turn against al-Qaeda extremists and the killing of al-Qaeda leader Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. Sectarian violence also had led to a de facto separation of Sunnis and Shiites and thus a natural burning-out of the civil strife. All these developments occurred in 2006 before President Bush ordered the “surge” in 2007 and put Petraeus in charge.

The “surge” actually led to a spike in violence in Iraq before the other factors contributed to a gradual reduction. Nevertheless, Official Washington’s conventional wisdom was framed around the “successful surge” credited to President Bush, Gen. Petraeus and the neocons.

Though nearly 1,000 U.S. soldiers died during the “surge,” its primary effect was to enable Bush and the other Iraq War architects to leave office without the legacy of a clear-cut military defeat hung around their necks. At the end of 2011, the U.S. military left Iraq with little to show for Bush’s investment of blood and treasure.

Besides Bush, the chief beneficiaries of the “successful surge” myth were Gen. Petraeus and Bush’s last Defense Secretary Robert Gates. Both remained as part of the high command after Barack Obama took office in 2009, as the young President didn’t want an abrupt break with Bush’s war policies in Iraq and Afghanistan.

But the “continuity” trapped Obama when he tried to steer the wars toward conclusions. While pursuing the drawdown of troops in Iraq, he asked for less aggressive options in the Afghan War, only to have Gates, Petraeus and other Bush holdovers maneuver him into authorizing another “surge” for Afghanistan.

Behind the President’s Back

As Bob Woodward reported in his book, Obama’s Wars, it was Bush’s old team that made sure Obama was given no option other than to escalate troop levels in Afghanistan substantially. The Bush holdovers also lobbied for the troop increase behind Obama’s back.

According to Woodward’s book, Gates, Petraeus and Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman, Adm. Mike Mullen, refused to even prepare an early-exit option that Obama had requested. Instead, they offered up only plans for their desired escalation of about 40,000 troops.

Woodward wrote: “For two exhausting months, [Obama] had been asking military advisers to give him a range of options for the war in Afghanistan. Instead, he felt that they were steering him toward one outcome and thwarting his search for an exit plan. He would later tell his White House aides that military leaders were ‘really cooking this thing in the direction they wanted.’”

In mid-2011, Obama finally eased Gates out of the Pentagon and replaced him with one of the President’s most trusted advisers, Leon Panetta, who had been serving as director of the CIA. At CIA, Panetta had overseen backchannel contacts between the White House and the Iranian leadership and other sensitive initiatives.

To complete the personnel shift – and to keep the Republican-leaning Petraeus out of presidential politics in 2012 – Obama put Petraeus in as CIA director. But Obama’s inner circle never trusted Petraeus who was known to have built political support for his military career by cultivating the loyalty of Washington’s top neoconservatives.

Friendly Neocons

For instance, in 2009 when Obama was deciding what to do about Afghanistan, Gen. Petraeus personally arranged extraordinary access to U.S. field commanders for two of his influential neocon friends, Max Boot of the Council on Foreign Relations and Frederick Kagan of the American Enterprise Institute.

“Fears of impending disaster are hard to sustain … if you actually spend some time in Afghanistan, as we did recently at the invitation of General David Petraeus, chief of U.S. Central Command,” they wrote upon their return.

“Using helicopters, fixed-wing aircraft, and bone-jarring armored vehicles, we spent eight days traveling from the snow-capped peaks of Kunar province near the border with Pakistan in the east to the wind-blown deserts of Farah province in the west near the border with Iran. Along the way we talked with countless coalition soldiers, ranging from privates to a four-star general,” they said.

Their access paid dividends for Petraeus when they penned a glowing report in the Weekly Standard about the prospects for success in Afghanistan – if only President Obama sent more troops and committed the United States to stay in the war for the long haul.

Besides getting neocons to put public pressure on the President, Petraeus turned to Boot in 2010 when Petraeus felt he had made a mistake in allowing his official congressional testimony to contain mild criticism of Israel. His written testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee had included the observation that “the enduring hostilities between Israel and some of its neighbors present distinct challenges to our ability to advance our interests” in the Middle East and added:

“Israeli-Palestinian tensions often flare into violence and large-scale armed confrontations. The conflict foments anti-American sentiment, due to a perception of U.S. favoritism for Israel. … Meanwhile, al-Qaeda and other militant groups exploit that anger to mobilize support.”

Though the testimony might strike some readers as a no-brainer, many neocons regard any suggestion that Israeli intransigence on Palestinian peace talks contributed to the dangers faced by American soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan as a “blood libel” against Israel.

A Happy Face

So, when Petraeus’s testimony began getting traction on the Internet, the general quickly turned to Boot and began backtracking on the testimony. “As you know, I didn’t say that,” Petraeus said, according to one e-mail to Boot timed off at 2:27 p.m., March 18, 2010. “It’s in a written submission for the record.”

In other words, Petraeus was arguing that the comments were only in his formal testimony and were not repeated by him in his oral opening statement. However, in the real world, the written testimony of a witness is treated as part of the official record at congressional hearings with no meaningful distinction from oral testimony.

In another e-mail, as Petraeus solicited Boot’s help in tamping down any controversy over the Israeli remarks, the general ended the message with a military “Roger” and a sideways happy face, made from a colon, a dash and a closed parenthesis, “:-).”

The e-mails were made public by James Morris, who runs a Web site called “Neocon Zionist Threat to America.” Morris said he apparently got the Petraeus-Boot exchanges by accident when he sent a March 19, 2010, e-mail congratulating Petraeus for his testimony and Petraeus responded by forwarding one of Boot’s blog posts that knocked down the story of the general’s implicit criticism of Israel.

Petraeus forwarded Boot’s blog item, entitled “A Lie: David Petraeus, Anti-Israel,” which had been posted at the Commentary magazine site at 3:11 p.m. on March 18. However, Petraeus apparently forgot to delete some of the other exchanges between him and Boot at the bottom of the e-mail.

Morris sent me the e-mails at my request after an article by Philip Weiss appeared about them at Mondoweiss, a Web site that deals with Middle East issues. When I sought comment from Petraeus and Boot regarding the e-mails, neither responded.

Obama’s decision to entrust a position as crucial as CIA director to Petraeus, an ambitious man with strong ties to the neocons, was always a risk. While Obama may have been thinking that he was keeping Petraeus out of a possible run for the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, the President put Petraeus in a spot where he could manipulate the intelligence that drives government policies.

Finally, as Obama heads into a second term, he appears to be clearing the decks so he can move ahead more aggressively with his own foreign policy. Robert Gates departed in mid-2011; David Petraeus has now resigned in ignominy; and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who often sided with Gates and Petraeus in taking neocon-style policy positions, is expected to step down soon.

Belatedly, Obama seems to have learned a key lesson of modern Washington: surrounding yourself with ideological and political rivals may sound good but it is usually an invitation to have your policies sabotaged.

Investigative reporter Robert Parry broke many of the Iran-Contra stories for The Associated Press and Newsweek in the 1980s. You can buy his new book, America’s Stolen Narrative, either in print here or as an e-book (from Amazon and barnesandnoble.com).

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48 comments on “Behind Petraeus’s Resignation

  1. The rate at which AmeriKa is deteriorating can no longer be defined as a “decline”. more apt description would be “free fall”.

    The people desperately need a George Patton type military commander. Too bad we couldn’t clone him. Since his personal notes etc reveal he was well aware of the screwing we were taking and the worse one we meted out to Germany under orders from the City of London, he could, (and probably would), initiate a military intervention right here at home. He could instantly end the parasite, fifth column “friends” and their false flag attacks, confine ALL federal employees and legislators until it could be determined if they had committed acts of treason, remove all “tricks” used to chop away at our constitution, give a very HARD boot to the FED RES / C.I.A., clean up or eliminate all the other politically rotted federal “alphabet” agencies and probably save millions of lives from the impending “Bolshevik Revolution” we’re being led into here at the moment. He was a warrior….not some mass-murdering, incompetent lacky given command by power of politics, rather than ability, character and honor.

  2. Barbara Glassman on said:

    Please post your articles on Twitter when you post them on the website. I just read this terrific piece and was eager to retweet it but it’s not on Twitter yet. Thanks in any case for your extremely valuable insights.

  3. Jym Allyn on said:

    paschn,

    You need to restart taking your meds. Fortunately your delusions ARE covered as a pre-existing condition under Obamacare.

    ================

    As to Petraeus, the illusion of bringing “civilization” to Afghanistan was proven false by Alexander the Great and everyone else who has since tried it. Petraeus’ plan will not and cannot succeed.

    There is no motivation for a geographically isolated tribal culture based upon crime (originally from robbing camel trains) to behave with the same sense of responsibility necessary for globalization.

    The ONLY recorded success by an outside country in dealing with insurgencies was what Rome did to Carthage and Judea by salting the earth and killing or deporting the inhabitants, and what the US did to Native Americans by disease, killing them, and conning them into being obedient to treaties that they could not read or understand.

    The Petraeus plan for creating a secular Afghan army and police to provide stability and an honest government would have made more sense if he had been smoking some of the native Afghan ganja (marijuana) as he was composing it.

    The Petraeus Iraqi “surge” was a sham as eloquently explained by Bob Perry in his comments. (That is not just my and Bob’s opinion, but the “boots on the ground” information from my son who was there in Iraq at the time.)

    As to Afghanistan, the “solution” (and perhaps the ONLY solution) to bringing about cultural change and globalization to Afghanistan is genocide of their criminal and tribal culture. As a country with the illusion of morality, and despite what we did to Native Americans and our lies that let us intrude into Iraq in 2003, that is something that the US is, and should not be, capable of.

    Instead, Afghanistan has a next door neighbor called China with the logistical ability for its military vehicles to run on gas that costs less than $1000 per gallon, the engineering skills to develop the mines and oil fields in NE Afghanistan to replace the current major revenue source of heroin in SW Afghanistan, and the cultural skills akin to Rome in dealing with the Afghan insurgency.

    Besides, China won the Vietnam War. Its time they won a war for us.

    As to Petraeus, I strongly suspect that he had a bungled hand in the US deaths in Benghazi and that his resignation shields him from that blame.

    • David Petraeus was a Republican, a remnant of George Bush the stupid, and you are saying that his hand was involved in Benghazi but Romney blamed Obama for it, why? They, the Republicans, engineer things and blame them on others?

    • You go into a lengthy and rhetorical diatribe about the flawed and failed attempts at bringing civilization to various nations AmeriKa has invaded/destroyed with disasterous results, then you make coy reference to your spawn being “boots on the ground” in Iraq. Was he able to effect policy/planning for our crooked leaders? Does he want a “warrior” type label for his turn at the helm of power same as the doughy McCain’s fairy-tale “service”? Or….was his life-threatening contribution in the quartermaster/logistics arena? Perhaps he was advanced artillary spreading the “gift that keeps on giving” in the form of Depleted uranium munitions illegally used along with the illegal, contrived invasion/slaughter of the indigenous people? You hint at my sanity in a pompous rhetorical way but…how sane is it to drone on and on ad nauseum about your insight into corrupt/failing actions of the blow-flies in D.C. and their sycophants in service, then bust buttons to let us know your spawn was “boots on the ground” at one of the many crime scenes? Did he rape/murder his fair share or was he in “intel”, behind the scenes figuring ways to re-establish the (failed) dollar as coin of the realm for oil and firm up the Central Bank’s control in Iraq? Except for your mention of family involvement in AmeriKa’s hegemony and immoral invasions into other nation’s business for corporate benefit, you go into accurate(?) detail of the immoral/corrupt acts….then mention family involvement….it appears you and/or someone near you has gotten off their “meds”. So,…one has to wonder if “boots on the ground” was actually “feet on the desk”, ownership in one of the AmeriKan corporations setting their fangs or the need to create a phoney “McCain-like” resume to dazzle the fools,(insert voters), back home in the future? Your entire article drones on about your knowledge of all these faulty/scurrilous endeavors then you mention your spawn’s direct(?) involvement. Now that sounds like someone in dire need of a regimen steeped in psychotropic drugs. Wanna borrow some of my “meds”? maybe pass half of them along to your spawn? Or is it closer to a family trait of zero moral character? Comedic, self aggrandizing ass.

  4. This gives me even more faith in President Obama! I always wondered how General Patraues managed to stay around as long as he did, after George Bush departed.

  5. rosemerry on said:

    Boot out Betrayus!

  6. RichardKanePhilaPA on said:

    It is a shame that Consortium wasted two articles on fluff, instead of on the resounding defeat of Islamophobes in every case. And only the Isolationist wing of the Tea Party winning anything this November.
    It’s time for Peace and reason the voters said so.

  7. “surrounding yourself with ideological and political rivals may sound good but it is usually an invitation to have your policies sabotaged.”

    That reminds me of how after 2008, Doris Kearns Goodwin’s book on Lincoln’s cabinet, Team of Rivals saw a surge in popularity among naive and wishful thinking liberals who took all of Obama’s “post-partisanship” fluff way too seriously. Let’s hope Obama’s learned something since then.

  8. General David Petraeus as CIA Boss was a very bad omen for the Muslim world. Petraeus has been a vocal military voice for blaming Islamic Republic for America’s defeats in both Afghanistan and Iraq. In April 2008, he told the US Senate that Iran was responsible fot the death of hundreds of US soldiers and thousands of Iraqi soldiers and civilians. For his propaganda lies for the benefit of Israel, Professor James Petras called Petraeus Zionism’s military poodle. Gen. David Petreaus’ grandparents were allegedly Dutch Jewish. In fact Petreaus is a Jewish surname.

    http://rehmat1.com/2011/04/30/obama-shuffles-cabinet-for-the-lobby/

    • rehmatshit overdoses on oil and pork coctail while attending his own Orthodox Jewish wedding ceremony

  9. RichafdKanePhilaPA on said:

    Thanks Rehmat for correcting me, besides McChrystal and Eisenhower, what generals were fair to Muslims?

  10. Hillary on said:

    In the Iraq/Iran war the US (Reagan)was simultaneously arming both sides.

    As a result any moral authority that America falsely prides itself in was lost.

    Maybe it’s too late to stop the inevitable and our only hope is to slow it down.

  11. An eye-catching, mind-opening article from which the Obama Administration can learn. Since becoming President in 2009 I have always felt that since Obama was surrounded by Bush’s war-hawks it will be almost impossible for him to make an impact in his first term. Because he was forced by Bush-era circumstances to surround himself with ideological and political rivals, his policies were often sabotaged opening the way for Romney to attack him that he did little to bring about the change he promised and in fact stole that phrase from him. It was akin to a lion killing the deer and hyena stealing it!

    Now that neoconservative holdovers from George W. Bush’s administration, former Defense Secretary, Robert Gates, General David Petraeus are gone, and Hilary Clinton is expected to leave soon, Obama the second will be able to flex his muscles to implement his promised policies and to plug the gaping hole of “blood and treasure” that the Bush war-hawks had created and put the humanity back on the peace track. America must win back the hearts and minds of the people if she wants to compete with emerging Chinese economic power.

    All over the world, including Pakistan, the Military leaders cook things the way they want. They do that when the man at the top is unable to perform. If the man at the top is honest, competent, and committed to take the country forward via his performance then these Military leaders are under check.

    Mahboob Khan
    International Tennis Coach
    USPTR/USTA/ITF
    Director, Cardio Tennis
    MKTA/Islamabad, Pakistan
    Mobile: 0092 300 8568403
    email: makhan67@hotmail.com
    Tennis site: http://www.tennisplayer.net

  12. nora king on said:

    Maxine Waters for CIA cheif.

  13. Robert Parry is very right when he says “Finally, as Obama heads into a second term, he appears to be clearing the decks so he can move ahead more aggressively with his own foreign policy. Robert Gates departed in mid-2011; David Petraeus has now resigned in ignominy; and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who often sided with Gates and Petraeus in taking neocon-style policy positions, is expected to step down soon.”

    • And now the stage is clear for Obama to perform .. finally!

      • Obama would live in history if he can negotiate safe exit of NATO forces from Afghanistan, Let everybody live in peace. If it happens, arms factories owned by jews will be shuttered down.

        • Mike Ehling on said:

          Obama would live even more greatly in history if he could get rid of NATO. The Cold War is over, we won, now “Come Home, America!”

    • Obama doesn’t “clear decks”. His masters do that. The PowersThatBe tried the barbaric, Quick Buck strategy against Muslims but they underestimated them. Now Plan B, the Negotiation strategy, is tried. Won’t work either – except for the usual war profits – because it, too, is unrealistic.
      What I wait for now is a foolishly courageous Obama (a la JFK) to cross his backers, do the right thing, and get JKK’d by a disturbed “White Republican veteran”, LHO the 2nd.
      As for Petraeus, was Ms Paula Broadwell a CIA ordered plant? They always do the sex thing (Puritan hang-up).
      Save this post and reflect on it.
      J

  14. Something’s going on we don’t now yet. If it was just maneuvering someone out of the second term team, then as Mr. Parry states, its just announced as a change of positions for the second term with Gen. Petreaus wanting to spend more time with his family after years of serving his country. Whatever it is that’s happened, it requires the General to resign now and not stick around for a more calm, arranged exit as part of the transition to a second term.

    The parts about the girlfriend accessing his email sounds more interesting. And the FBI investigation into her. There’s smoke there, but is there fire? So far, it just seems to show that neither was very smart. Him letting her access his gmail account, which presumably doesn’t have secret info in it. And her sending off threatening emails and anonymous harassing emails.

    So far, even that doesn’t seem like the fire to cause all of this. But its smoke in some interesting directions. The key is probably what else the FBI knows from their investigation of her. Most likely guess is that Gen. Petreaus wasn’t properly security minded and she had access to more secret info that she shouldn’t have seen? Or, maybe he’s silly enough to really have secret work-related info in his gmail account?

    Worse is if the FBI knows she was working for a with a foreign power, or doing something else she shouldn’t have been doing with the secret info she knew.

    So far, this just doesn’t feel right. I can make up stories as to why a serious action like a resignation is appropriate. And I can make up stories as to why admitting the affair is the least damning course for the general to take. But, so far its all just distant smoke on the horizon, and who knows if there’s really a fire there.

    • Back channel diplomacy, brother.

      • nora king on said:

        Major Paula posted a video about the Brass Ceiling for female military officers due to combat rules She finds archaec. Her name came up due to a complaint about harrassing e-mails from her by another woman close to Petraeus. If we assume that the General has “gone running” with other up and coming women, perhaps she was trying to put a list together to pressure him into publicly supporting the abolition of Brass Ceiling regs.

        As to Obama not knowing before the election…..I have always imagined that Obama goes out in the Rose Garden for a smoke with an ipod full of Nixon tapes, learning from history. Building firewalls between judicial and executive can save you from impeachment. Nixon/J.Edgar might be the most ammusing right now. Or the Saturday Night Massacre. It is so funny that the very people who helped build this spy state of perpetual war are now hoisted on their own digital petards.

  15. andreas w. mytze on said:

    who is rehmat and who is borat?
    so many questions….

  16. Obama began his first days after his first election by making horrid appointments, Summer and Geithner, plus keeping Bush’s neocon in place, Gates, Petraeus, etc. He fired none of them, with the possible exception of Summers. He escalated the dangers to troops and continued and expanded Bush’s dyfunctional policies based on illusion and daddy problems, provoked by his daddy substitute, Chaney. Obama has show a distinctive lack of courage and at time no leadership abilities whatsoever. Clinton was another gross mistake. What has she ever accomplished that is in anyway exceptional except collecting titles under which she massively under performs or performs badly. It is simply celebrity, not competence which she bring to the table, and for four years she is at the table at Obama’s invitation. So far he is a very poor president, in my view. Now he has a chance to do much better, but it is hard to see how he will gain courage he has never before exhibited and leadership skills which have been absent.

  17. Maybe the media didn’t hang “….the legacy of a clear-cut military defeat around their necks [Bush, and the other Iraq War architects]“, but that legacy, all the blood of our youth and the lost treasure, will be hanging around their necks long after they are dead.

    As for that schmoozer Patreaus, GOOD RIDDANCE! I wonder what neocon, soulless lobbying group he’ll join.

  18. nora king on said:

    Now we know that Eric Cantor knew and did not alert Diane Feinstein. Was this a failed October Surprise? Diane is angry, and we gotta love an angry Diane grilling Eric. She is the man in his branch, and he failed to report a potential national security risk to her. We loved sending an angry woman to Washinton when she was first elected and it is even better now that she is the elder ranking member. Hawk that she is, she ain’t takin it from the tea party.

  19. bob zimway on said:

    The question for me is, What did she learn from Petraeus that’s so threatening? So couldn’t that have been handled some other way, saving him and going after her? No, it looks like the Obama admin already wanted him out and they played their affair card before the Benghazi hearing came up.

  20. MK Ultra on said:

    Sooooo…this is all about removing a neo-con, Bush friendly lacky so that wonderful, peaceful, truthful, progressive Obama can ~wink, wink~ negotiate with Iran. Now I get it!

    Now, who says that the “Left” is not every bit as delusional as the “Right” and drink from the pitcher of Kool Aid, eh?

  21. carroll price on said:

    History tells us that Zionist do not take kindly to US presidents bringing wars to an end, so if Perry is correct in his assessments as to why Petraeus had to go, he had best advise his friend Obama to be careful since he stands an excellent chance of becoming the 1st US president assassinated during the 21st century.

    • Strongly doubt it. Every president murdered in office had either a very strong dislike for the unconstitutional Central bank or plans to remove it. As long as Barry keeps money/lives flowing to back up Israel’s hegemony/terrorism in the region and continues to be silent regarding our continued Central Bank screwing, he’ll be just fine…but we won’t.

    • Mahboob Khan on said:

      Yes, he has to be careful because he asked for it. A few days ago I bumped into a link where 17 people were planning to assassinate Obama. The neocons thought that Romney will win and they will get rid of Obama but Obama won, now they are in a fix. Let’s not forget around 49% people do not like Obama and in that 49% you got many many crazy people ready to do crazy things. As I have said in my main comments this is the chance for Obama to perform and perform big time on several fronts, (1) economy, (2) eliminations of wars and bringing the troops home, (3) working for the world peace, (4) working on the Global Warning projects to reverse the climatic change which is already on us, (4) and working for his own Black community. Yes, Obama the first was almost a failure with one exception that he did not start any new war, and Obama the second has to perform. The next four years are very important not only for the United States of America but for the world at large.

      • Wow.

        Were there any plans to bring these conspirators to justice or did Chertoff order the FBI to repatriate them back to Israel too? Also, if so, can we expect to see them on Israeli television discussing their plans?

    • CSpurgeon on said:

      Right you are. In January, Andrew Adler, editor and publisher of the Atlanta Jewish Times, wrote a column complaining that President Obama was not belligerent enough toward Israel’s enemies. Adler fantasized about the Israeli Mossad assassinating Obama to make way for a president more willing to go to war with Iran. There is evidence pointing to the involvement of America’s Zionist crime syndicate and the Mossad in the murder of President Kennedy. JFK tried to prevent Israel from acquiring nuclear weapons. Kennedy’s Department of Justice wanted the Israel Lobby to register as foreign agents, effectively ending its ability to buy politicians. His successor, Lyndon Jew-Puppet Johnson, made no such demands.

  22. “Obama’s Peace Initiative”? Who could threaten peace more than Obama? Especially now that Obama’s non-congressional illegal support for rebels in Libya has propped up yet another totalitarian islamic state, or his drone wars in Yemen, Pakistan or Somalia. Not to mention using nuclear weapons (Depleted Uranium Rounds) in Libya while at the same time claiming “Humanitarian” support for the war there.

  23. Seems I have been denied space over here. You don’t like the whole truth

  24. “Extra-marital affair”. Cover story itself. Petraeus backed the wrong horse. He chose the C.I.A. faction favoring Romney. The attack on the Libyan Embassy was orchestrated by them. It was intended as an “October Surprise” false-flag operation to “Carterize” Obama-according to Webster Tarpley. What do you think Robert Parry ? I’ve been following electoral politics for years, in part because of your fine coverage of the 1980 Presidential theft. Best Regards,Bill McElrath

  25. AmericaFirstforaChange on said:

    Broadwell scandal not the first time Petraeus was sloppy with email — in 2010 he leaked his own emails scheming with neocon Max Boot (alsoscroll to comments of following URLs):

    http://mondoweiss.net/2012/11/broadwell-scandal-not-the-first-time-petraeus-was-sloppy-with-email-in-2010-he-leaked-his-own-emails-scheming-with-neocon-max-boot.html

    General Petraeus Leaked Emails about Israel:

    http://www.newstatesman.com/blogs/mehdi-hasan/2010/07/general-petraeus-israel-emails

  26. weisseharre on said:

    bury them all with ‘full military honors’ but bury them

  27. Petraeus was also an architect of the “The Road to Iran goes Through Syria” Strategy.

    Excepted below is something interesting I found from 2008 on that subject.

    Petreaus and others in the the present Administration pretty much see eye-to-eye in terms of strategy in the Mideast region. In fact, the General may have been an author of much of the tactics in Syria. Now that things have gone south, he may be falling on his sword.

    When Obama came in, one of the earliest initiatives was to try to pry Assad away from Iran. That didn’t work out, as planned. So, simultaneously, Benghazi, Libya and Daraa, Syria exploded in exactly the same way within a few days of each other in February last year. The rest is history.

    http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/story?id=6148650&page=1#.UJ6tw2d5iEd

    Exclusive: Petraeus Wants to Go to Syria; Bush Administration Says No

    By JONATHAN KARL (@jonkarl)
    Oct. 30, 2008

    Apparently Gen. David Petraeus does not agree with the Bush administration that the road to Damascus is a dead end.

    ABC News has learned, Petraeus proposed visiting Syria shortly after taking over as the top U.S. commander for the Middle East.

    The idea was swiftly rejected by Bush administration officials at the White House, State Department and the Pentagon.

    Petraeus, who becomes the commander of U.S. Central Command (Centcom) Friday, had hoped to meet in Damascus with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad. Petraeus proposed the trip, and senior officials objected, before the covert U.S. strike earlier this week on a target inside Syria’s border with Iraq.

    Officials familiar with Petraeus’ thinking on the subject say he wants to engage Syria in part because he believes that U.S. diplomacy can be used to drive a wedge between Syria and Iran. He plans to continue pushing the idea.

    “When the timing is right, we ought to go in there and have a good discussion with the Syrians,” said a Defense Department official close to Petraeus. “It’s a meaningful dialogue to have.”

    Petraeus would likely find a more receptive audience for his approach in an Obama administration, given Barack Obama’s views on the need to engage America’s enemies.

  28. elmerfudzie on said:

    The CIA does have factions and is reminiscent of the Chicago Police Red Squad during the late 1960′s. These factions surface from time to time. You may recall a fuming, President Kennedy dispatching the FBI to go and clip a few CIA wings, ordering the round up of guns and ordnance at Lake Pontchartrain intended for Cuban exile Black Ops. Or, President Carter firing eight hundred CIA operatives the so called, cowboys in 1977. Further, allegations have appeared about the Petraeus gmail account and carelessness regarding outside access to classified material by Broadwell. If the gleaned data identified our Naval submarine positions or that missing nuke ARMSCOR lost en route from Pelindarba South Africa to Chicago, then I hope she telephoned NEST to go fetch it. I assume these lovers have brains, since both are products of West Point, its all in the family, you see. But when a President or top brass is sleeping with a mobsters girl friend to wit, JFK during one of his many escapades was in the sack with the gorgeous Ms Exner, that WAS over the top. I wasn’t being flippant mentioning subs, such info is very secret but only for an hour or so, it was intended as an example of labile information. His e-mails may have had highly classified information however their importance lasts for a short duration. My only recommendations are to run a tighter ship and have an occasional chat with a parsons. Don’t forget to get screen him with a clearance check first, ho ho ho, ho.

  29. JGabriel on said:

    Robert Parry: “Normally, in such situations, a cover story is used to spare someone of Petraeus’s stature embarrassment.”

    That wouldn’t have been an option in this case. Eric Cantor, House Majority Leader, knew of the affair. If Petraeus or the White House hadn’t acknowledged it, then Cantor would have brought it up later at the time most convenient for the GOP.

    .

  30. jim sharp on said:

    AS YOU KNOW:
    “All forms of the state have democracy for their truth,
    and for that reason are false to the extent that they are not democracy.”
    Marx, Critique of Hegel’s Philosophy of Right (1843)