Damn It Feels Good To Be A General
By SGT Awesome
I remember as a child hearing stories or seeing movies about famous generals from wars in the past and thinking about how great these men seemed to be. They were truly Titans walking amongst mortals; they could do no wrong and earned every bit of respect they had.
Then I joined the military.
We had guys like Schwarzkopf and Powell who, while maybe not quite as Titan-like as their predecessors, still earned every single salute ever rendered to them. But seeing it from the inside the mystique was somewhat shattered. For every Stormin’ Norman there were a dozen other general officers who were just jockeying for position, often at the Pentagon, so they could finally live the good life. They had zero care or regard for those beneath them.
The cancer of the Pentagon became a reality to me and I could not un-know it.
I bring this up because currently the Pentagon is considering demoting General Petraeus retroactively.
He retired in 2011 and took over the head job at the C-I-freaking-A until it was finally revealed that he was less reliable with classified material than your sergeant buddy who had his clearance revoked because he got a DUI.
For the next four years the FBI investigated and the Army investigated and Brian Williams investigated and they all found that what he was accused of doing, he did… and as of 2016 the decision to demote him by a single star, five years after he retired, is still unmade as Petraeus runs around having dump trucks filled with cash making weekly drops at his house.
Contractor Edward Snowden meanwhile had to run to fucking Russia for exposing how our own government was illegally spying on its own citizens and SFC Charles Martland had to go to Congress to fight for his Special Forces career after it came out that he beat up a child rapist in Afghanistan.
Consider yourselves officially called out, Pentagon. You sit around in your offices and meet with lobbyists and Congressmen and you wear the same uniform as those people in Afghanistan today; yet you feel no empathy towards them. Hell, many of you probably walk around with decorations and awards from your own time overseas yet through some unknown mechanism you’ve become uncaring sycophants willing to sell your soul for a nice condo in Florida.
Occasional ceremonial wrist slaps like this are as opaque as the air you oxygen thieves breathe and equally as insulting.
Meanwhile Joe, while downrange, has to deal with an officer corps who have to heavily weigh the authorization for their Soldiers to simply return fire because it might cost them their career if it turns into bad press as they don’t have the magic protection of a star on their shoulder.
Worse, he got caught doing it, which forced you clowns to deal with it exposing the Military Justice System (and hell, the regular justice system) for the joke it is. It’s all about who you know and in some cases, who you blow—which of course translates to Captains learning early to sell their integrity and their subordinates down the river so they don’t get passed up for promotion because if they can just get away with it long enough they can count on a general (pun intended) immunity to all wrong doing.
Your actions must have consequences regardless of your prior duty, otherwise you expose… actually, no. I know someone who can summarize my thoughts far more eloquently than I:
“Oaths do matter, and there are indeed consequences for those who believe they are above the laws that protect our fellow officers and enable American intelligence agencies to operate with the requisite degree of secrecy. Accordingly, I thank our legal and counterintelligence specialists for their contributions to this effort, and I appreciate the hard work and dedication of the men and women of the Department of Justice in bringing this case to a successful conclusion.”
-David H Petraeus