Old Generals Don’t Fade Away, Either


Just to be clear on this: We’re against politicians keeping a “girl Friday” on the side? I’m asking only because the sudden resignation of retired Gen. David Petraeus as CIA director has me a bit perplexed. While I have no doubt that Petraeus’ extramarital affair and subsequent admission thereto are real and sincere, I don’t remember the directive suggesting that extramarital affairs were cause for concern. After all, the list of Washington politicians who have dined out on their spouses is longer than the list of union thugs with felony convictions.

This is the guy whom the Democrats used to refer to as “David Betray-us.” Therefore, it’s unlikely that the vermin in the Administration of President Barack Obama withheld information regarding his misbehavior out of any concern for his endangered dignity. These are the same clowns who shrieked bloody murder when former President Bill Clinton faced impeachment for perjury over his lies regarding his tendency to treat the Oval Office like a crash pad. They threw an epic tantrum when many demanded the resignation of Anthony Weiner for turning Twitter into an unmarked, windowless van parked too close to the high school. To be honest, a Republican opposition that looked the other way on the extracurricular activities of Senator David Vitter and former Senator Larry Craig (I still get nervous when nature calls while I’m in the Minneapolis Airport) can hardly object.

But why cut Petraeus loose now? Why not months ago, when the FBI allegedly “stumbled” upon the affair? If the CIA director opened the door to a security breach at the highest level, why would Obama allow him to continue potentially jeopardizing national security during an exceptionally fiery time? Some people might suggest that Obama (who brazenly lied to the American people about virtually everything from the budget to Benghazi, Libya) simply doesn’t care as long as it doesn’t interrupt his golf games. But I think the answer is simpler: protecting the campaign.

Obama held back on dropping the hammer on Petraeus until he knew his re-election was clear.  The irony lies in the fact that an electorate that displayed no qualms over Obama’s bald-faced lying about Benghazi and Operation Fast and Furious (for starters) is hardly likely to pull the handbrake over Petraeus’ peccadillos.

When Attorney General Eric Holder perjured himself in front of Congress, he did so with Obama’s full endorsement. When Obama changed the tale of Benghazi more often than Al Sharpton changes the oil in his hair, Democrats sang along to every new refrain. Last Tuesday, 62 million Americans (51 percent of those who cast ballots in the 2012 election), laid down their dignity and patriotism in support of a President whose dubious accomplishments on fronts economic and diplomatic pale in comparison to his arrogant mendacity. If Obama forced Petraeus out in order to quash any potentially damaging testimony he might deliver to Congress over Benghazi, then the President’s efforts were not only another example of his usual bumbling, but they were entirely wasted.

In Obama’s America, people care as much about marital infidelity as much as they do about dead ambassadors, dead Navy SEALs, dead Border Patrol agents and dying liberty. And the Republican-controlled House will drag Petraeus out of a spider hole if they have to in order to force him to testify.

The idea of a member of the Washington reprobates’ club getting the bum’s rush for something as mundane as a an affair seems as strange as a Presidential Administration making Richard Nixon look like George Washington — and getting away with it. Here’s the curveball: I don’t think Petreaus’ resignation has anything to do with Obama’s re-election racket; I think he stepped down because he knew he had disgraced himself, and he wanted to rescue what little dignity he had left. Tragically, that means the lone member of Obama’s crew who is worth a plugged nickel is headed for the door.

–Ben Crystal


Personal Liberty

Ben Crystal

is a 1993 graduate of Davidson College and has burned the better part of the last two decades getting over the damage done by modern-day higher education. He now lives in Savannah, Ga., where he has hosted an award-winning radio talk show and been featured as a political analyst for television. Currently a principal at Saltymoss Productions—a media company specializing in concept television and campaign production, speechwriting and media strategy—Ben has written numerous articles on the subjects of municipal authoritarianism, the economic fallacy of sin taxes and analyses of congressional abuses of power.

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