...has hit it into high gear. The "news agency" Inter Press Service has published:
U.S.-IRAQ: Fallon Derided Petraeus, Opposed the Surge
By Gareth Porter*
WASHINGTON, Sep 12 (IPS) - In sharp contrast to the lionisation of Gen. David Petraeus by members of the U.S. Congress during his testimony this week, Petraeus's superior, Admiral William Fallon, chief of the Central Command (CENTCOM), derided Petraeus as a sycophant during their first meeting in Baghdad last March, according to Pentagon sources familiar with reports of the meeting.
Fallon told Petraeus that he considered him to be "an ass-kissing little chickenshit" and added, "I hate people like that", the sources say. That remark reportedly came after Petraeus began the meeting by making remarks that Fallon interpreted as trying to ingratiate himself with a superior.
That extraordinarily contentious start of Fallon's mission to Baghdad led to more meetings marked by acute tension between the two commanders. Fallon went on develop his own alternative to Petraeus's recommendation for continued high levels of U.S. troops in Iraq during the summer.
Who is Gareth Porter? From Wikipedia:
Gareth Porter (born June 18, 1942 in Independence, Kansas) is a U.S. Americanhistorian, investigative journalist and policy analyst on U.S. foreign
and military policy. A strong opponent of U.S. wars in Southeast Asia and the Middle East, he has also written on the potential for diplomatic compromise to end or avoid wars in Vietnam, Cambodia, the Philippines, Korea, Iraq and Iran. He is the author of a revisionist history of the origins of the Vietnam War, Perils of Dominance:Imbalance of Power and the Road to War in Vietnam.
What to make of this? Certainly, military service members are known for colorful language and frankness. However, this report should be taken with less than a grain of salt for a number of reasons:
- No source is named
- A Washington Post article with more anonymous sources is referenced.
- This quote has conveniently surfaced just in time for Petraeus' briefing to Congress
- The news source IPS not only lacks credibility, but calls itself the leading news agency:
IPS, civil society's leading news agency, is an independent voice from the South and for development, delving into globalisation for the stories underneath. Another communication is possible.
It's all too convenient that a quote describing Petraeus as eager to please a superior would surface just as the antiwar left has tried to characterize Petraeus as following president Bush's orders.
The likelihood that an Admiral would address his subordinate in such a way smacks of unprofessionalism that is not the hallmark of the United States military.
Perhaps it is easier for the left to suspend its disbelief in the military bearing and professionalism of our military.
Petraeus a chickenshit... The idea that a man who has so far spent four years in the midst of a bloody war in Iraq is somehow afraid is beyond ridiculous. But it's what the left would like to believe.
And of course, Think "Progress" picked up and ran with the "story." Even Markos "screw them" Moulitsas of DailyKos jumped on the chance to slander the commander on the ground:
Listen to the commanders! But only if they suck up to Bush and the neocon's conceits and fantasies.
*Here are some other IPS Stories by Porter. You decide. The man has been interviewed on AntiWar Radio.
This just adds to the continued left-wing attack on the integrity of General David Petraeus to cover up their own failures. Other Petraeus attacks by the anti-war crowd:
Is Petraeus’ Drawdown Part Of The White House’s 2008 Political Strategy?
The New York Times gave MoveOn.org a 2/3 discount for its "Betray Us" ad.
General Hillary Clinton lectured Petraeus about the war. But then she got lectured.
Will ‘victory’ in Iraq make us safer?
And, of course - Video Archaelogy: Calling Petraeus A Traitor Traced To MSNBC/Olbermann