Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | News Flashes | Scoop Features | Scoop Video | Strange & Bizarre | Search

 


General Petraeus Punished For Making Love, Not War

General Petraeus Punished For Making Love, Not War

By Sherwood Ross
December 9, 2012

While the media may have covered the disastrous affair of CIA Director David Petraeus and his biographer Paula Broadwell in detail, it overlooked his successful effort to further militarize the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA.) “Petraeus ...leaves behind an agency that has strayed from intelligence to paramilitary activities,” reports Jeremy Scahill in The Nation. He writes the CIA has been embroiled in a behind-the-scenes struggle with the Pentagon’s Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC) “for control of the expanding global wars being waged by the United States.” As Wikipedia notes, JSOC’s primary mission, “is believed to be identifying and destroying terrorists and terror cells worldwide.” As such, it has been known to work cooperatively at times with CIA’s Special Activities Division but lately the two agencies are said to be battling each other for supremacy.

Scahill cites several former intelligence officers to make this point. “A considerable part of the CIA budget is now no longer spying, it’s supporting paramilitaries who work closely with JSOC to kill terrorists, and to run the drone program,” he quotes retired career CIA case officer Philip Giraldi as saying. The CIA, adds Giraldi, “is a killing machine now.” (Q: When wasn’t it?) And retired Army Col. W. Patrick Lang opined Petraeus “wanted to drag them (CIA) in the covert action direction and to be a major player.”

Scahill recalled it was Petraeus as head of the U.S. Central Command in 2009 who broadened the military’s ability to operate in more countries, including Yemen, where drone strikes later “escalated dramatically.” In his first month as head of the CIA Petraeus okayed a series of drone strikes in Yemen that killed three U.S. citizens including Abdulrahman al-Awlaki, age 16. And one unnamed State Department liaison official who worked extensively with JSOC said the CIA is becoming “a miniature JSOC that purports to be an intelligence agency” and that Petraeus’s real legacy is as a “political tool,” making him, Scahill writes, “an enabler of those in the national security apparatus who want to see global mini-wars continue.”

In Yemen, last May, the Bureau of Investigative Journalism (BIJ), London, reported how a double U.S. drone strike there killed 12 civilians and injured 21 more in the city of Jaar. “Witnesses said the first strike targeted alleged militants meeting in a house. Civilians who had flocked to the impact site were killed in a follow-up strike,” the BIJ reported. Surely, this is war without mercy, as there is every likelihood that medical personnel rushing to aid the victims, as well as firefighters, family, and friends, are liable to be killed as well.

The Yemen strike was reminiscent of U.S. strategy in Pakistan. On at least a dozen occasions there, twin strikes killed at least 50 civilians. The civilians died, BIJ said, when they rushed to help victims of an initial attack and were hit by a second, follow-up strike. Since 2002, BIJ has recorded up to 746 people killed in U.S. strikes in Yemen. At least 117 of the dead are civilians, 24 of them children. Of course, nobody in Washington got on Petraeus’s case for these slayings.

Despite all he did to improve the CIA as an illegal killing machine, Petraeus just had to go. It was his love affair, not his refinements in the art of killing in the service of the Empire, that was the headline-grabbing scandal that doomed his career. His criminal commission of drone strikes to kill people in somebody’s else’s country without the benefit of legal authorization, much less a trial for the legally innocent victims---is regarded as unworthy of mention by our presstitute media. His fall from grace and power is sure to instruct future command officers to stick to the ugly business of making war, not love.

*************

Sherwood Ross is an American public relations consultant “for worthy causes” and anti-war blogger.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Faisal Al-Asaad: Gaza: McCully’s Calls For Restraint On Both Sides Is Side-Taking Itself

Since June 12th, the world’s attention has been squarely focused on the events unfolding in the West Bank, Gaza and the occupied territories. The disappearance of three Israeli youths who were later found dead prompted a flurry of condemnations ... More>>

ALSO:

Tania Billingsley: Demand For Accountability On Sexual Assault

Since my assault I feel that people have been assuming that my idea of justice is to have Rizalman found guilty in a New Zealand court. While it is an important part of justice being done, my main reason for wanting this is not for my own sense of ... More>>

Leslie Bravery: Hold The Perpetrator To Account, Not The Victim!

In a 4 July 2014 statement to Scoop Independent News, on the violent deaths of four young people in the Israeli Occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem, New Zealand's Foreign Minister Murray McCully made the following comments: 'The recent killing ... More>>

ALSO:

Santon Tekege: Investigative Report Into Oil Palm In Nabire Regency, Papua

Several companies’ plans to invest in the oil palm sector in Nabire have met with local opposition. People from the Yerisiam and Wate ethnic groups have staged several peaceful actions in Nabire against one of these companies, PT Nabire Baru1. More>>

ALSO:

Redress Information: Putting The Death Of The Israeli Squatter Teens In Context

The Western media are awash with correspondents’ reports on the grief Israelis are experiencing over the death of three teenagers. The teenagers, the sons of Jewish squatters living on stolen Palestinian land in the occupied West Bank, who disappeared ... More>>

ALSO:

Liran Antebi: United States: Prepared For Military Intervention In Iraq?

Following the seizure of Iraq’s main cities by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), there has been much discussion about possible US military intervention in Iraq. Since the ISIS campaign began, a small American force of 275 soldiers has been ... More>>

John Chuckman: Iraq, ISIS, And Intervention: Just What Is Going On?

As so often is the case in foreign affairs, we will never know with precision what is happening in Iraq. The governments involved have reasons to disguise what they are doing, and a number of governments are indeed at work there. More>>

Joel Cosgrove: MANA and Industrial Relations: “Between equal rights, force decides”

Fightback participates in the MANA Movement, whose stated mission is to bring “rangatiratanga to the poor, the powerless and the dispossessed.” Capitalism was imposed in Aotearoa through colonisation, and the fight for indigenous self-determination is intimately ... More>>

Get More From Scoop

 
 
TEDxAuckland
 
 
 
 
Top Scoops
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news