October 5, 2009
Obamunism: See No Wisdom, Hear No Wisdom, Speak No Wisdom
And in the meanwhile, the New York Times reports that Barack H. Obama (or one of his minions) has muzzled Gen. David Petraeus, who remains Commander of CENTCOM but appears unappetizing to the powers that be in the D. of C.:
General Petraeus’s aides now privately call him “Dave the Dull,” and say he has largely muzzled himself from the fierce public debate about the war to avoid antagonizing the White House, which does not want pressure from military superstars and is wary of the general’s ambitions in particular.
The sticky wicket between the general and B.O. appears to be very specific -- and so bizarre it's almost a knee-slapper; Barack Obama, or his acolytes, fear that David Petraeus may run for president in 2012:
“General Petraeus has not hinted to anyone that he is interested in political life, and in fact has said on many occasions that he’s not,” said Peter Mansoor, a retired Army colonel and professor of military history at Ohio State University who was the executive officer to General Petraeus when he was the top American commander in Iraq.
“It is other people who are looking at his popularity and saying that he would be a good presidential candidate, and I think rightly that makes the administration a little suspicious of him.”
(One notes with rye amusement, if not sourdough, that Obama appears to be a lot more suspicious of David Petraeus than of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.)
The prospect of a campaign clash of the titans -- or a titan and a midget -- terrifies campaign officials and governing aides alike (who are actually the same people). Petraeus has demonstrated success in the face of repeated attack, both physical (the enemy) and verbal (the president, when he was but a senator)... while Obama has only demonstrated incompetence in the face of reality.
Obama himself denies it (through a worshipper). But it truly fits: What could be more likely to elicit a freeze-out, even of our most important military commander, than the president's fear that he could be overshadowed by a mere soldier? How rude!
So until Obama either gets reelected or boots Petraeus out in an abundance of pre-emptive damage control, it's yet another Obamic six-pack of "Shut up," he explained.
Hatched by Dafydd on this day, October 5, 2009, at the time of 5:31 PM
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The following hissed in response by: dasbow
he has largely muzzled himself from the fierce public debate about the war to avoid antagonizing the White House, which does not want pressure from military superstars and is wary of the general’s ambitions in particular.
Wow. That sounds like the Kremlin. Hell, it sounds like almost any autocrat. Purge your best people out of fear they will overthrow you.
The following hissed in response by: AD
I wonder if this period of silence has anything to do with the two-month regimen of treatment the General has just undergone for prostate cancer?
The following hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh
No, I don't think prostate-cancer treatment silenced Gen. David Petraeus.
First, I've known several people who had chemotherapy, which is more debilitating that radiation treatment for prostate cancer; and while they were physically weak, they didn't become more taciturn (in between treatments, of course).
Second, in Petraeus' case, I find it even less likely that he would muzzle himself because of physical infirmity. This is a man whose profession is facing down death -- and ordering other men and women to face down death.
If he thought it important to speak up, to the press or anyone else, I don't think being in cancer treatment would stop him.
The only thing that would stop him would be if he had been specifically ordered to hold his tongue, or if he understood, even in the absence of orders, that the CinC wanted him to keep his mouth shut.
Finally, we have direct evidence against the cancer theory: According to this story in the Voice of America:
The statement also said the treatment had minimal impact on the general's work schedule. He took at least one overseas trip during the treatment, and was able to maintain his physical training.
So no, prostate cancer doesn't explain his silence.
The above hissed in response by: Dafydd ab Hugh at October 6, 2009 1:30 PM
The following hissed in response by: Bart Johnson
This is much like Truman's fear of General MacArthur as a potential political adversary.
MacArthur said that he had no intention to run, but Truman didn't believe him.
MacArthur did say that Truman should worry about a General, but not him.
He never said to Truman that the general in question was Eisenhower.
The following hissed in response by: AD
Many on the Left are bringing up the Truman-MacArthur comparison to the current situation with McCrystal; I hate to remind them how Truman-MacArthur turned out for them in 1952.
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