Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Petraeus Ain't My Hero

"About this big, Senator."

So we've got one of these spectacular flameouts that happen from time to time.  Four star general with a Roman Legion sounding name, moves from big post to bigger post to head of the CIA.  There's talk that he might consider a run for President one day.  Suddenly he resigns, caught up in a sex scandal where he was cheating on his dowdy, grandmotherly wife with a sexy, chiseled newcomer 20 years his junior.  Every ambition he had is toast in one nanosecond. 

The thing that I don't really grasp about this whole event is the thing that remains unsaid.  What did we ever like about this guy?  In any coverage I've seen, it's just assumed that Petraeus is an American hero, a great man brought low by something that eventually brings many a great man low.  Yeah, but why is he a great man?

Until a minute ago, he was head of the CIA.  I don't know about you, but I don't like the CIA.  I'm afraid of the CIA.  The very idea of the CIA used to keep me awake at night.  The CIA does bad things, often enough to good people.  In fact, that's what they do for a living.  The CIA is exactly the type of agency that Darth Vader would run, if he were to live here on earth rather than wherever Star Wars happened.

Before the CIA, Petraeus was in charge of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.  Personally, I was against these wars.  I protested against these very same wars, which I saw as colonial dirty wars.  I know that millions of people did the same, and felt the same way.  The fact of these wars also used to keep me awake at night.  Of course, nowadays I rarely think about them, but I'll just weigh in here and note that I'm still against them.

It says a lot about the USA that the news coverage of Petraeus is generally so positive.  I'd like to see a headline that says, "Creepy Warmonger and Spymaster Caught With His Pants Down."