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The scandal

Unlike Joel, I’ve been thoroughly enjoying the Petraeus scandal.

Oh, not the sex part. What’s emerged about that so far is pretty dull: middle-aged married man boffs attractive, slightly younger married woman. This is news? (The British, who do sex scandals with more color and athleticism than anybody, must be laughing at us for getting excited over this.)

But what a marvelous cast of characters — from the “victim” who’s a more sketchy character than her anonymous stalker to the infamously shirtless FBI agent.

When somebody makes a movie out of this — and they must — it should be one hell of a black comedy.

I also admit to an ignoble degree of Schadenfreude. Petraeus was always too good to be true. Nobody should ever be that lionized — especially not somebody who’s in the killing business.

Are the journalists bloodhounding this trivial-looking story so thoroughly because they’re embarrassed at having fallen for the illusion of perfection? Or just because it’s good dirt? Or are they really digging for for something important beneath? (Why was this kept under wraps until juuuuuust after the election? What’s with America’s top brass hanging out with dubious “social liaisons”? Were those two human wisteria vines, the Kelley-Khawam sisters, running a high-class hooker ring and setting up government VIPs for blackmail? Nah, I doubt that — or they wouldn’t be so broke. But what kind of hold did they have over these generals, what kind of influence in power circles? The webs of influence here are weird.)

Oh, there is so much oozing out from the edges of the U.S. power structure and so little that’s actually known.

To me, the most intriguing detail is one that’s been mentioned only in passing — Petraeus showing up at a party at the Kelleys’ in a 28-vehicle motorcade.

If that’s true, think on what it says about the pretensions of this class of military mucky-mucks. Not only can you bet your booties that Mr. Four-Star didn’t pay for that accompaniment himself. But worse, what kind of “servants of the republic” (yeah, pardon the laughable term) parade to the parties of wealthy-but-dubious characters in grand cavalcades befitting a Medici or a Borgia? This isn’t Patton booming around in a Jeep. This is more like Benedict Arnold, whose craving for wealth, public displays of ostentation, and passion for a very much younger woman were keys to his downfall.

Not saying Petraeus is a traitor — except in the sense that most servants of Mordor-on-the-Potomac are traitors to the principles of liberty.

But well … you tell me. What more do you think might ooze out (or manage to stay hidden beneath) as this scandal grows? Is this just an overblown affair, something only prudes and yellow journalists could get all het up about? Or is it the “underblown” but titillating manifestation of something more corrupt and disgusting than we’re likely to learn?


  1. just waiting
    just waiting November 15, 2012 4:14 am

    Little head get hard, big head get soft, its been the plague of men since Adam.

    Here’s a guy who had all the training and military preparation one can have. His fall shows that for all their tanks and guns and bombs, even the most hardened military man is no match for the most powerful weapon in the world, the one found between a woman’s legs.

  2. RickB
    RickB November 15, 2012 4:59 am

    I’m convinced that we’ll never know what happened. Is Paula a Mata Hari for the [insert random three letter acronym]?
    The only reason it matters is because these people–Petraeus, FBI, CIA, Stevens, etc., etc. are “responsible” for trillions of dollars and the (destruction of the) lives of millions.
    I can only hope that the scandal helps reduce the average man’s trust in government. That would put the affair solidly in the “plus” column.

  3. MamaLiberty
    MamaLiberty November 15, 2012 5:43 am

    With things like wikileaks, anonymous and all the other hackers and rival spy outfits… it’s amazing that anyone thought such things could be kept secret. It demonstrates the real arrogance of these people.

  4. Stryder
    Stryder November 15, 2012 6:14 am

    In a magic show, the magician stands on stage and says,” look over here”!
    All the while the assistants are setting up the illusian. Seems to me we’re strapped in to the front seats at the worlds largest magic show.

  5. M
    M November 15, 2012 7:00 am

    Although I am most likely waaayyyy off base here, what about the following senerio…(it’s still fun to speculate):

    Remove the Heads of Departments that cannot be publically castigated or make the Administration look “Bad” (i.e. Bengazi) or question the Authority within the Authority.

    Let’s be serious – these people have most likely been hiding the pickle for years – it’s only when it becomes in the best interest of “The Nation” that it must be reported.
    The bigger question is why the one was reelected after not knowing/being aware of any scandal/problem/situation for the past 4 years? There cannot be that many layers of Kid Gloves in Mordor.

    No wonder bus service is so slow in Washington, D.C. – they have to stop to clean out the bits and pieces of sacrificial lambs every few months….

  6. Matt, another
    Matt, another November 15, 2012 7:38 am

    I am sure we will never know all that has transpired. I do believe the most likely is that someone tried to use knowledge of the affair to apply leverage to Petraeus and he decided not to play. My old cold warrior instincts suggest to me that the real story is the Kelly-Khawam sisters. It would appear to someone that is jaundiced and cynical (me) that Jill Kelly was in place in Tampa for the sole purpose of compromising the leadership of Centcom and others. Collect all the information possible from the leadership, maneuver them into positions that might open them to being “reasonable” at some key decision point, etc.

    On the specific issue of Petraeus, it is part of the pride and hubris that is part and parcel of the lifestyle. Someone that has had 20 years or better of subordinates continously sucking up to him for favors is easily led astray.

    From personal experience, General Officers generally have very flexible, adjustable morals and negotiable principles. If they were scrupously moral and held principled stands they would not make it to the upper tiers of leadership.

  7. Kent McManigal
    Kent McManigal November 15, 2012 7:52 am

    Ben Stein, the genius idiot, had this to say about General Betray-us: “I do not think a man usually should have been fired for having sex with a woman not his wife. To me, that is just what men and women do. It is a part of life.

    Whew. I guess I’m off the hook. 😉

  8. Scott
    Scott November 15, 2012 10:05 am

    If you lift any government’s rock, you’re going to find something nasty living under there-any government, any where on the planet. The details will never surface,and once something else more interesting happens, this will be forgotten.

  9. Ellendra
    Ellendra November 15, 2012 11:03 am

    I think the whole thing is a huge distraction. Between the voter fraud charges being made, the Bengazi thing, the calls for secession, hurricane Sandy, and the downright terrifying regulations that are getting passed every day, the media is focusing on somebody’s sex life? Uh-uh, they are getting paid (and probably pressured) to focus on the guy’s sex life.

  10. Mike Porter
    Mike Porter November 15, 2012 11:23 am

    Benghazi is a subject that the mainstream outlets are loath to report – just as with any subject that might harm their commuslim messiah, so you can bet your ass that they’ll take any distraction they can get (the ‘magic show’ mentioned by Stryder?). As to the timing of all this, well, it sure looks mighty suspicious. One could easily imagine a scenario where a CIA director might feel compelled to report the true nature of such an attack whilst administration lackeys busily spin the ‘spontaneous riot’ angle on every news outlet that will have them. And with this administration, one could very easily imagine a damaging snigglet of scandal held over said directors head to pressure him into staying on the teleprompter. Of course, there may be no connection at all. At the very least, it would seem that the FBI was ordered to hold back until after the election. We certainly wouldn’t want to better establish a pattern of bad leadership that the electorate might actually begin to notice.

  11. Steve
    Steve November 15, 2012 12:01 pm

    I have mixed feeling about how it all happened. Basically it was triggered by some not so nice but probably not illegal emails. It always helps to have an FBI agent friend, or perhaps wanting to be more than a friend. If the head of the CIA can get run over by a dubious investigation we’re all in trouble. Having a public profile, you’ve probably gotten uglier threats than Kelley got. Even Glenn Greenwald, no defender of Betray-us, thought the true scandal was the investigation.

    Once that is said it is pure schadenfreude for us little people. I’m enjoying its unfolding. I wish there was more mention of just what he did. Michael Hastings has written a well quoted reminder but most journo’s are too deep in the Pentagon feed trough to ask questions.

  12. EN
    EN November 15, 2012 1:03 pm

    It was all about discrediting the good general, over his personal investigation of Benghazi. However, as is often the case in these events, the story soon grows out of control. It’s not exactly a secret that the good general has been “mentoring” female officers for years. It’s always nice to appoint someone under you if you have their closeted skeletons well documented. Call me a cynical, eye rolling, old white guy who hasn’t been blinded by the language of PC, but the religion of feminism has allowed “empowered” women to sleep their way to the top versus the sad old version of the “unempowered” women sleeping their way to the top. 😉 However, it can’t be denied that woman are now getting all kinds of opportunities they never would have had without feminism. For instance, there’s at least three lawsuits pending over the hostile work environment, and other antics, of “The Lesbian Love Palace”, otherwise known as Department of Homeland Security HQ in NYC. And let’s not forget that Capt Broadwell came up in the Military Intel world under the infamous General Claudia Kennedy who tried to turn MI into her own version of an “empowered” bastion of feminism, and was never known to let intelligence collection get in the way of her goal. Most of this is just the chickens coming home. I refuse to act like I’m above it all. I shall grab some popcorn and enjoy every unsavory new revelation.

  13. NMC_EXP
    NMC_EXP November 15, 2012 3:14 pm

    “Petraeus showing up at a party at the Kelleys’ in a 28-vehicle motorcade.”

    I wonder of the party in question was the one at which the photo of King David smooching Jill Kelley was taken?

    I wonder if that photo contributed to Broadwell getting her knickers in a knot?



  14. Claire
    Claire November 15, 2012 6:27 pm

    How weird that most of those photos have been scrubbed from the ‘Net or locked from view. Just a party … wonder what’s to hide …?

  15. winston
    winston November 15, 2012 7:14 pm

    Were it not for Benghazi this wouldn’t have even made the news. As other commenters have mentioned it’s pretty much a fact of life that higher up Officers, especially rockstar-status ones like Petraeus, are always surrounded by high-class booty calls (AND he’s in the CIA? Come on…).

    Who the heck cares? I mean nobody rushes to call CNN whenever ole Lcpl winston has an affair with a stripper. Officers…

  16. Claire
    Claire November 15, 2012 7:25 pm

    Hey, Lance Corporal winston — If you’ll leak the torrid details of “strippergate” to me, I’ll do my best to interest CNN. 😉

  17. LarryA
    LarryA November 15, 2012 11:39 pm

    Love is a many splintered thing.

  18. winston lite
    winston lite November 17, 2012 7:09 pm

    Yeah but that’s the thing…the sexcapades of troublemaking lower-downs are really no more newsworthy than that of policy-making higher ups. Everyone does it, either way it’s just a matter of agenda.

    Still though, it’s some journalist that wrote his book and they probably had a quick little thing on the couch after too many cosmopolitans. That’s just lame. A man of his status should be getting busted in the misdt of a wild drunken orgy with no less than 3 journalists. ‘All in’ right?

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