Monday, September 24, 2007

Moveon Democrats Show Their Contempt for the Military

General David Petraeus, the U. S. Forces Commander in Iraq, is a man who has served his country faithfully for 35 years with honor and distinction. He is a 1974 graduate of West Point, graduating in the top 5% of his class. He was the General George C. Marshall Award winner as the top graduate of the U.S. Army Command and General Staff College Class of 1983. He earned a PH. D in International Relations from Princeton University in 1987.

His awards and decorations include the Defense Distinguished Service Medal, the Distinguished Service Medal, two awards of the Defense Superior Service Medal, four awards of the Legion of Merit, the Bronze Star Medal for valor, the State Department Superior Honor Award, and the NATO Meritorious Service Medal. In 2005, U.S. News and World Report recognized General Petraeus as one of America’s 25 Best Leaders. In January 2007 he was confirmed unanimously by the U. S. Senate to become the U. S. forces commander in Iraq.

Last Thursday, the anti-war far-left organization called him a traitor. The full-page ad sold to Moveon by the New York Times at a discounted rate, cleverly playing on the Generals name, and in large print asked, “General Petraeus or “General Betray Us”? They accused him of lying in his progress report to Congress.

Calling General Petraeus, the man who is leading our troops in time of war, a traitor is disgusting and beyond contempt. As one who was serving in Vietnam at a time when anti-war protestors carried Viet Cong flags and Jane Fonda visited our enemy and posed for pictures on an anti-aircraft gun, I can imagine how the troops in the field must feel when their Commander is called a traitor and politician vote to endorce that view.

Following the ad, the Senate voted 72 to 25 to condemn for the attack. Some Democrats joined Republicans in this vote including high-profile liberals such as Diane Feingold, Ted Kennedy, Harry Reid, Barbara Boxer, and John Kerry. Other Democrats, many of whom had voted to confirm him as Commander back in January, refused to condemn the attack on Petraeus. The Democratic Senators who are seeking their party’s nomination for President, Hillary Clinton and Christopher Dodd, were among those siding with Moveon. Barak Omaba was present but choose not to vote and Senator Joseph Biden was absent, campaigning in Iowa.

Ads like this are polarizing and I guess that is the point. It motivates the base of the party and forces people to choose sides. The Presidential candidates can no longer waffle. They must decide if they will serve as puppets of Moveon and show their contempt for America's military leadership or if they will vote for decency and condemn those calling our top General in Iraq a traitor.

I don’t know how this will play out in the polls, but Democrats, while pleasing the fringe, may loose support in the middle. Also, nastiness like this may push moderate Republican who question the wisdom of our policy in Iraq, back into the Republican fold. Not all Democrats and Independents share the contempt for our military shown by the Moveon Democrats. As one who has been critical of the Bush Administrations decision to go to war and the conduct of the war, and who also has developed other dissatisfaction with the Republican Party, my loyalty to the Republican Party has been slipping. Events like this remind me why I am still a Republican.

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1 comment:

  1. It's interesting that you seem concerned with Democrats being the puppets of but not concerned that our U.S. Army generals aren't the same to President Bush. How many generals didn't say what Bush wanted them to say and got fired for it? Let's see, three come to mind right off the bat, including the then reverred army General, Eric Shinseki, who told Bush in February of 2003 that it would take, based on the general’s experience in Bosnia, "several hundred thousand" troops to stabilize post-war Iraq. Bush didn’t hear what he wanted to hear and fired General Shinseki.

    Then there's General John Abizaid, who less than one year ago, in December 2006, told Congress that no additional troops would be needed in Iraq, which isn’t what President Bush wanted to hear so, you guessed it, General Abizaid was fired and replaced with a general that would say what Bush wanted to hear.... that would be your idealized and cannonized General David Petraeus. Yes,’s ad was over the top, but it did exactly what it was supposed to do, it exposed the ssue of the validity and credibility of the review and advice given by a hand-picked administration puppet named General David Petraeus; albeit rudely and crudely.

    Lastly, you question what the result of the ad would have on active troops stationed in Iraq. Besides the fact that it should reinforce their belief in their rights to freedom of expression, reinforce their rights as U.S. citizens to disagree publicly with the ruling authority in Washington, D.C., and give them another example of what they are fighting for in the first place, what else are you getting at? Do you seriously believe that an advertisement from a known far-left, ultra-liberal organization like would demoralize our troops any more than having their general in charge (Abizaid,) who says no more troops are needed, replaced for purely political reasons with a Bush administration puppet (Petraeus) who totally contradicts the replaced general, while extending tours of duty and calling back units that have served two or three tours of duty already? Give me a break. You give our active military far less credit for understanding the dynamics of our political system and General Petraeus far too much credit for being independent and unbiased in his rehearsed and totally expected pro-surge comments.