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Showing posts with label Petraeus. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Petraeus. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Petraeus and His Police Advisors Tied to Iraq Death Squads, Torture

Former U.S. and Iraqi officials have implicated Gen. David Petraeus and his two top civilian police advisors in the operations of Shiite death squads and secret torture centers.

 “A 15-month investigation by the Guardian and BBC Arabic reveals how retired US colonel James Steele, a veteran of American proxy wars in El Salvador and Nicaragua, played a key role in training and overseeing US-funded special police commandos who ran a network of torture centers in Iraq,” the Guardian reported Wednesday in print and an hour-long video.

“Another special forces veteran, Colonel James Coffman, worked with Steele and reported directly to General David Petraeus, who had been sent into Iraq to organize the Iraqi security services,” the Guardian continued.

Jerry Burke, chief policy advisor to the Iraqi Ministry of Interior in 2003 and 2004, says in an on-camera interview that Petraeus, who went on to become the top American commander in Afghanistan and then CIA director before resigning in a sex scandal, “had to have known” that organized Shiite militias dominated the Iraqi police commando service. 

“He had to have known,” Burke says. “These things were discussed openly, whether in staff meetings or before or after staff meetings or general conversation.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Broadwell's Petraeus Book Rushing to Paperback

Penquin Books is working overtime to rush out the paperback version of Paula Broadwell’s infamous biography, “All In: The Education of General David Petraeus,” according to an industry insider.

Hey, it’s a business.

Surely not far behind: A tell-all about her affair with the legendary ex-general. (“All Out”?)  After that, it's not hard to see a cable movie, even a talk show, advice column, beauty tips and TV commercials in her future.

What a great country.

And it would hardly be a surprise.

According to voluminous news reports, including today’s riveting Washington Post story on Broadwell’s dizzying accent through the capitol’s military and think-tank elites, the comely West Point grad and long distance jogger is quite the striver, shedding prevarications in her resume like so many candy wrappers.

Speaking of which, Penguin might consider editing her author’s bio on its web page.

DC Insiders Raved Over Broadwell-Petraeus Book--But Not Real Readers

Back in the day, the late, great satire magazine “Spy” had a hilarious standing feature, “Logrolling in Our Time,” which needled famous authors for scratching each others’ backs with irrationally effusive blurbs -- “riveting,” masterful,” “epic,” “moving” and the like.

Of course, helping a friend cannot be said to be anything but honorable, especially in such a wretched industry as publishing. But the great unwashed who actually buy a book based on the raves of the famous might understandably be upset when it turns out to be not so great after all.

Such, evidently, is the case with Paula Broadwell’s now infamous biography of her erstwhile FWB David Petraeus, “All In.”

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Spy Masters and Covert Affairs

A chief of the CIA's operations wing after 9/11 was caught on a security camera in an agency garage getting oral sex from a female subordinate, according to a widely circulated story. It didn't dent his reputation, perhaps because he was poorly regarded anyway, three agency sources said, and already on the way out.

Likewise, one of the CIA's chiefs of station in Baghdad after the 2003 invasion was "notorious for sleeping with subordinates," as one senior ex-agency official put it, in an account echoed by several other sources over the years. "He was put in the penalty box a couple of times," the source said, "but it was never never anything fatal," despite the written complaints of at least one woman serving there. He went on to to other higher-ranking agency jobs.

Read my whole piece at Foreign Policy online.

Gmail Sharing & Other Old Spy Tricks

As it turns out, the Gmail trick David Petraeus and his paramour used to hide their correspondence is one commonly employed by CIA field operatives when agency bosses turn down their pleas for more sophisticated gear to communicate with their foreign spies.
See the rest of my piece at Foreign Policy magazine online.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Panetta: We’ve Got Qaeda Hemmed In

In his farewell announcement to employees Thursday, CIA Director Leon E. Panetta maintained  that the agency was “severely” crimping al Qaeda's operations.

“We are conducting our most aggressive operations against al-Qaeda and severely constraining their operational ability,” Panetta said in a goodbye note to the agency’s workforce.