Afghanistan
Petraeus Scandal - Rusting Swords of the US - Afghanistan

Petraeus Scandal - Rusting Swords of the US

Posted by Aneela Shahzad on

Perhaps the FBI does to the Americans what the CIA does to the world, but it must be said that using women to dismiss political rivals is a cheap stunt, perhaps favorite of the FBI. Let’s not forget how Bill Clinton was surrounded with controversy and criminal investigation throughout his tenure; the Whitewater scandal, the White House FBI files controversy, and the White House travel office controversy and theVince Foster‘s death issue, but eventually Monica was used to pin him down. The very same sequence of events comes to our mind, as Monica approaches the President in a sexual manner and then seeks the help of a co-worker, girl-friend who secretly recorded their telephone conversations. The same formula was applied on poor Mr. Petraeus when Paula Broadwell, Mr. Petraeus’s biographer, shared some “harassing” e-mails sent to her by Mr. Petaeus with another woman who knows both of them, but the FBI is not ready to disclose her identity as yet, and who approached the FBI on the issue; only was it the other way around!

Petraeus had recently traveled to Libya and the Middle East, and had been scheduled to testify about the Benghazi events next week behind closed doors to the House and Senate intelligence committees. The Benghazi episode has constantly been haunting Obama and Hillary, it is being speculated that Petraeus’s testimony would create problems for Obama, but now, he will not be giving that testimony.

David Patraeus was a high achiever from the beginning, a soldier-scholar with a PhD in International Relations; he was a strategist and a commander in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars. Lauded as a miracle worker for turning around the war in Iraq with his counterinsurgency strategy, he was dispatched to Afghanistan to replace Gen. McChrystal, who had been fired by President Obama, for disagreement in the withdrawal program. But the Obama administration had a wary relationship with Patraeus from the beginning and Petraeus presented to be a more formidable obstacle to Obama’s desire for a withdrawal date.

Petraeus bearing an all-round personality had considerable reach in all ranks of the forces and much more public presence than usual high-rankers of the army; he was considered a candidate for the president of Princeton University and even for the president of the United States, by some. But as it happened, Petraeus was systematically brought down by the Obama administration from the Commander of US Central Command to the Commander of the ISAF (Afghanistan) in June, 2010 and then down to the Director of the CIA in July 2011 from where he resigned on the 9th of Nov, 2012 after facing allegations of sexual harassment from Ms. Broadwell.

Obama wanted Petraeus to give him two things, one a positive report on the out-come of the Afghan war, for which he had openly stated to the Congress in March 2011 that, ‘Allied gains in Afghanistan are “fragile and reversible” and may be in jeopardy…’ and the other thing Obama wanted was a withdrawal date that would make him look like the hero, he had promised to be to the American people, but Petraeus insisted on a longer, persistent and committed fight in Afghanistan.

All these events direct our fingers towards the crude state that the matters of a so-called superpower rest upon. It seems that the US armed forces are not on the same page with the government they serve, it also seems that the policy is not driving individuals as much as individuals are affecting policy. The common slogan of politicians here in Pakistan, who blames the Army for all their miss-accomplishments, seems to be working in its true form in America. Does a country, which is wrestling within its own dirty politics, where one instrument of the government is vying against the other, have the moral standing to interfere in the matters of others?

The irony of the matter is that since its inception in 2002, ISAF has had a change of 14 commanders in 10 year, which makes an average of less than a one full year for each commander. This quick change does not only signify a difficult situation in Afghanistan but is clear indicator of lack of confidence between the government and the armed forces; either the commanders do not agree with the policy dictated to them or are utterly unable to act upon it. Highly accomplished, professionally trained swords of the US Army seem to rust the moment they breathe Afghani air. A country having a societal structure faced with moral corruption from the roots to every bud that sprouts anew; a people with no strength of character; and a machinery that relies much on character assassination; what possible good was it to bring to the Afghanis?

Should it be that the Afghanis should wash the dirty cloths of their saviors before they are able to help them out of the mess they put them in, in the first place. Or should the world amuse itself with new episodes of soap operas of spoilt elite of a dying superpower? Perhaps the UN should start preparing a distress-fund to keep standing the false hope it portray in the US, as the saviors of the world.