Monday, November 26, 2012

The Petraeus Deal

I get the idea behind General Petraeus, amid his sideline liaisons, resigning his post as CIA director. Important information could be compromised considering his position, and who knows whether or not Jill Kelly or Paula Broadwell are subordinates that were hired by some precarious source to gather intelligence—something that is entirely speculation, at least for now. Still, I am reminded of how many of our past presidents have also had extra marital affairs. The list would probably include nearly every president we've had in our history, aside from perhaps a small few. Abraham Lincoln for example. Jimmy Carter would probably be among the faithful. And so far as we know, Barack Obama has had no extra marital relations either.

The odd question I have is why is it so important for General Petraeus to step down, and to have so much of the spotlight on General Allen to step down without such information? Granted, General Allen's situation has more to do with Article 134 of the UCMJ (conduct unbecoming). But it would be my guess that any sitting president would have the most compromisable intelligence possible. He is, of course, the highest ranking official in the land. Yet while this is true, in the cases where a sitting president has had known extra marital affairs, I can't think of a single one that stepped down—despite them being asked to, such as was the case with Bill Clinton.

Okay, he was impeached. So what. He was still the president. He still held his office. And the impeachment was tied to the lie, not the affair.

The other thing that bothers me about the whole thing is the fact that all of the attention seems now to be placed on these two men and what they apparently were doing in their spare time. I don't want to go out on a limb here and suggest that this is perhaps a convenient way to turn attention away from Benghazi, and the clear screwups that occurred under President Obama's watch. But it does seem, well...convenient. Shouldn't we be more concerned with what happened to the Ambassador who was killed? Shouldn't we be more concerned with the other three Americans that were killed? Shouldn't we be more concerned that we were attacked by terrorists on what is essentially American soil? And shouldn't we be more concerned about what the president was doing when this attack occurred that cost the lives of Americans rather than what these two men have been doing which, for all intents and purposes, affects only five known people, and has no tangible affect on National Security or foreign relations?

I'm not in any way condoning the actions of General Petraeus nor General Allen. But I think that in the grander picture, the real issue is not Jill Kelly and Paula Broadwell. The real issue is President Obama, the Obama Administration's decisions on that day on September 11th, and Benghazi as a whole. This is where our first attention should be. We can deal with the tantalizing sexual liaisons of these two men after we figure out the more important details of Benghazi which have suddenly become a bit buried, and perhaps even forgotten about already.