Tag Archives: General

DOUBLE STANDARD: Will Petraeus Face Charges? Senators Say He Has “Suffered Enough”

Washington DC- Two prosecutors for the Department of Justice have recommended that an indictment be brought against David Petraeus. Petraeus reportedly shared his email account and classified information with a lover who also happened to be his biographer.

As you might remember Petraeus, the four-star general who led the surge in Afghanistan and in Iraq under President’s Bush and Obama also became for a short time the director of the CIA. While head of the Central Intelligence Agency, Petraeus is suspected of illegally sharing classified materials with his biographer, Paula Broadwell, an Army Reserve officer with whom he was having an affair. Federal agents found classified documents on Broadwell’s computer and at her home, raising the question of how she obtained those materials.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder refused to say Sunday whether he would indict Petraeus despite reports saying charges were imminent.

Most interesting, however is the parade of U.S. Senators who have come to the defense of Petraeus including Sen. John McCain and Sen. Dianne Feinstein. Feinstein tells CNN’s State of the Union that she not only supports Petraeus but that she believes he has “suffered enough”. In the video above, Feinstein explains that Petraeus has “lost his job already”.

It is important to note however that Feinstein, believes that Julian Assange, “Should be vigorously prosecuted for espionage”. The Senator also believes that Edward Snowden “violated his oath and violated the law”, calling the exposure of the NSA spying program “treason”.

It is worth nothing that in Snowden’s case he revealed the NSA program to the American public, on whom the program was illegally spying. Snowden’s revelations whether you agree with them or not, was not for personal gain. On the other hand, Petraeus’ sharing of information was not a revelation to the person with whom it was shared. Rather it was allowing classified information to be handed over to a girlfriend for the sake of scoring points.

Even so, Feinstein doesn’t feel that Petraeus needs to suffer anymore.

The Intercept has pointed out that Petraeus isn’t actually suffering at all after having compromised classified information. “David Petraeus, the person who Feinstein said has “suffered enough,” was hired last year by the $73 billion investment fund KKR to be Chairman of its newly created KKR Global Institute, on top of the $220,000/year pension he receives from the U.S. Army and the teaching position he holds at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. Let us all pause for a moment to lament the deep suffering of this man, and the grave injustice of inflicting any further deprivation upon him.”

Ground troops might be needed to combat ISIS according to Pentagon official

After President Obama said the US would not send troops to fight ISIS in the Middle East, the top military official in the US has said if the current strategy were to fail, American ground troops would be needed to stop the growing threat of the Islamic State.

Army General Martin Dempsey gave testimony to the Senate Armed Services Committee saying, according to ABC News, “To be clear, if we reach the point where I believe our advisers should accompany Iraqi troops on attacks against specific ISIL targets, I will recommend that to the president.”

Gen. Dempsey also said he believes the current strategy of forming an international coalition with nations from the West and Middle East is the appropriate response at this time.  If there was a direct threat to the US though, Gen. Dempsey said, according to the BBC, “I of course would go back to the president and make a recommendation that may include the use of US military ground forces.”

One instance where US ground troops may be required to help Iraqi and Kurdish forces in the area would be in the retaking of the second largest Iraqi city, Mosul.  “It could very well be part of that particular mission to provide close combat advising or accompanying for that mission,” said Gen. Dempsey.  “But for the day-to-day activities that I anticipate will evolve over time, I don’t see it to be necessary right now.”

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel also spoke to the committee saying the initial plan to keep current airstrikes focused in Iraq would expand to Syria, according to the LA Times.  Hagel said, “targeted actions against ISIL safe havens in Syria, including its command and control, logistics capabilities and infrastructure.”

As of now, the US has conducted over 160 airstrikes against ISIS and the Islamic State in order to help ally forces on the ground in Iraq.

House of Cards: Highly ranked Army general pleads guilty to multiple sex crimes, Senate reacts

WINSTON-SALEM, North Carolina, March 17, 2014– At a Fort Brag military court the United States reached a deal with defense attorneys of U.S. Army brigadier general Jeffrey Sinclair Sunday. The United States agreed to drop charges of sexual assault and two other charges, which would have forced him to register as a sex offender, in exchange for a plea deal.

Sinclair has been charged with forcible sodomy according to allegations by a female U.S. Army captain, which could have landed the Army veteran to life in prison.

The Army captain accused Sinclair of forcing her to engage in oral sex when she tried to break off a former relationship with him. According to the accuser, Sinclair threatened to kill her if she tried to report him.

Sinclair will plead guilty to “mistreatment” of one accuser, a junior Army officer, his lawyer said.

According to the Reuters report:

Sinclair already had pleaded guilty this month to [additional] military crimes of having an adulterous affair, asking junior female officers for nude photos and possessing pornography on his laptop while deployed in Afghanistan. Those offenses carry a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison and possible dismissal from the Army.

Sinclair is expected to enter his plea today. Military prosecutors are withholding comment for now.

Last week the Senate unanimously (97:0) passed a bill cracking down on how the U.S. Defense Department manages cases of sexual misconduct. It has moved to the House where it is likely to pass. The bill was sponsored by Senator Claire McCaskill (D-Mo.)

Senator Kristin Gillibrand (D- N.Y.) attempted to push a competing bill by filibuster, which she argued went further than the one that passed. The filibuster failed.

Gillibrand’s bill would have taken the prosecution of sexual assault cases out of the chain of command and transferred it to the Judge Advocates General Corps. She argued that roughly a quarter of all sexual assault cases are perpetrated by someone in the chain of command, making reporting obviously difficult. Of the estimated 26,000 cases of unwanted sexual contact in 2012, only 3,000 were reported and 300 prosecuted.

A report from National Center for Victims of Crime validates Gillibrand’s claims. According to the report, men are more likely to experience some form of unwanted sexual contact than women. Men are also three times as likely not to specify the incident.

Not all were satisfied with the outcome of the Senate vote.“Service members deserve a professional and unbiased justice system equal the system afforded to the civilians they protect. It is a travesty that this very practical, conservative measure, supported by a substantial majority of the Senate and 60% of Americans was blocked by a procedural filibuster,” Nancy Parrish, president of Protect our Defenders, said of Gillibrand’s bill in an interview with TIME.

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