Did Petraeus briefing set stage for U.S.-Israel spat?

(See Update below).

Mark Perry, writing in Foreign Policy, reports that American anger at Israel’s position on settlements is driven at least in part by military concerns. By Perry’s account — a version that Pentagon and administration sources seem to be confirming rather than challenging — the change dates back to a January briefing of the Joint Chiefs of Staff by a team from CENTCOM, or Central Command, the command responsible for a region from the Middle East east to Pakistan and Kazahkstan.

“The team had been dispatched by CENTCOM commander Gen. David Petraeus to underline his growing worries at the lack of progress in resolving the issue. The 33-slide, 45-minute PowerPoint briefing stunned (Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Adm. Michael) Mullen. The briefers reported that there was a growing perception among Arab leaders that the U.S. was incapable of standing up to Israel, that CENTCOM’s mostly Arab constituency was losing faith in American promises, that Israeli intransigence on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict was jeopardizing U.S. standing in the region, and that (U.S. special envoy George) Mitchell himself was (as a senior Pentagon officer later bluntly described it) “too old, too slow … and too late.”

The January Mullen briefing was unprecedented. No previous CENTCOM commander had ever expressed himself on what is essentially a political issue; which is why the briefers were careful to tell Mullen that their conclusions followed from a December 2009 tour of the region where, on Petraeus’s instructions, they spoke to senior Arab leaders. “Everywhere they went, the message was pretty humbling,” a Pentagon officer familiar with the briefing says. “America was not only viewed as weak, but its military posture in the region was eroding.”

As Perry tells it, that briefing set the stage for Vice President Joe Biden’s trip to Jerusalem; the announcement on the day of Biden’s arrival that 1,600 new apartments would be built in East Jerusalem was not the major cause of the breach, but rather the straw that broke the back of an already overstrained camel.

“But no one was more outraged than Biden who, according to the Israeli daily Yedioth Ahronoth, engaged in a private, and angry, exchange with the Israeli Prime Minister. Not surprisingly, what Biden told Netanyahu reflected the importance the administration attached to Petraeus’s Mullen briefing: “This is starting to get dangerous for us,” Biden reportedly told Netanyahu. “What you’re doing here undermines the security of our troops who are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. That endangers us and it endangers regional peace.” Yedioth Ahronoth went on to report: “The vice president told his Israeli hosts that since many people in the Muslim world perceived a connection between Israel’s actions and US policy, any decision about construction that undermines Palestinian rights in East Jerusalem could have an impact on the personal safety of American troops fighting against Islamic terrorism.” The message couldn’t be plainer: Israel’s intransigence could cost American lives.

That’s fascinating in a number of ways:

1.) As Perry notes, the stance that Petraeus took is not merely strategic but political in nature, stretching the bounds of his role. Furthermore, the general is not an impetuous sort. He thinks things through very carefully, so he no doubt understood fully the gravity of the message he was sending. That’s also why the White House in turn has taken it so seriously.

2.) “The message couldn’t be plainer: Israel’s intransigence could cost American lives.” That’s the core of the issue. Cast in those terms, the debate becomes much more difficult for the current Israeli government and for those in this country who defend Israel’s pro-settlement policies. And the fact that this message is coming from the U.S. military only compounds its impact.

3.) Reading between the lines of Perry’s piece and its later clarifications, there was a clear decision at high levels, apparently from within the Pentagon, to make this story public. If so, the leak was itself a policy decision, an effort by the military to throw itself publicly behind both the Petraeus warning and the sterner line taken in response by the Obama administration.

UPDATE: In prepared testimony before Congress today, Petraeus essentially confirmed the Foreign Policy report. Addressing what he called the “major drivers of instability, inter-state tensions, and conflict … (that) can serve as root causes of instability or as obstacles to security,” the very first one he listed was:

“Insufficient progress toward a comprehensive Middle East peace. The enduring hostilities between Israel and some of its neighbors present distinct challenges to our ability to advance our interests in the AOR. Israeli-Palestinian tensions often flare into violence and large-scale armed confrontations. The conflict foments anti-American sentiment, due to a perception of U.S. favoritism for Israel. Arab anger over the Palestinian question limits the strength and depth of U.S. partnerships with governments and peoples in the AOR and weakens the legitimacy of moderate regimes in the Arab world. Meanwhile, al-Qaeda and other militant groups exploit that anger to mobilize support. The conflict also gives Iran influence in the Arab world through its clients, Lebanese Hizballah and Hamas.”

Petraeus also pointed out that progress in Middle East peace talks could seriously weaken the power of Iran:

“A credible U.S. effort on Arab-Israeli issues that provides regional governments and populations a way to achieve a comprehensive settlement of the disputes would undercut Iran’s policy of militant “resistance,” which the Iranian regime and insurgent groups have been free to exploit. Additionally, progress on the Israel-Syria peace track could disrupt Iran’s lines of support to Hamas and Hizballah…. As such, progress toward resolving the political disputes in the Levant, particularly the Arab-Israeli conflict, is a major concern for CENTCOM.”

373 comments Add your comment

Bruno

March 16th, 2010
12:03 pm

Slackers. Get back to work.

Drain The Swamp (NIF)

March 16th, 2010
12:04 pm

Did Petraeus briefing set stage for U.S.-Israel spat?

Nah.
The libs needed somebody to hate. They needed it to be based on previously hated people. Lots of Jewish people have made a good living so they qualify as evil rich people. hating Jews was a perfect fit for the libs.

Maybe they are planning on building massive human storage warehouses to store this new voting block in. Hell, they may even allow them to have their own Rabbis.

Matilda

March 16th, 2010
12:07 pm

NIF, what is the politically correct way to say, “That’s RETARDED!” without offending Sister Sarah?

Doggone/GA

March 16th, 2010
12:23 pm

“what is the politically correct way to say, “That’s RETARDED!” without offending Sister Sarah?”

one dimensional thinking?

Mick

March 16th, 2010
12:29 pm

NIF

Why ALWAYS with the blame directed at one political party?

I think patraeus is following the old saying, “keep your friends close, but keep your enemies closer”.

Sir Fruit du Vignoble (Tea-Bagger)

March 16th, 2010
12:30 pm

The answer my friends is blowing in the wind, it’s obvious, more tax cuts for the rich and another foreign war of choice to feed the (machine) military industrial complex…

AmVet

March 16th, 2010
12:32 pm

I’ll ask again, if libs hate the Jews so much, why do Jews always overwhelming vote for Democrats?

Maybe, just maybe because they don’t trust the Christian nutjobs that run the GOP?

Peadawg

March 16th, 2010
12:34 pm

“The answer my friends is blowing in the wind, it’s obvious, more tax cuts for the rich and another foreign war of choice to feed the (machine) military industrial complex…”

PLEASE SAY YOU’RE BEING SARCASTIC!!! After all these budget cuts I’m on board w/ taxing the rich. And please NO MORE wars.

Abe Bird

March 16th, 2010
12:38 pm

If there is any connection between the Palestinian crisis and the American war at Iraq and Afghanistan then why the US didn’t asked Israel previous of their invasions? Why the US have the right to badly influence Israel security and now crying as a bitten wolf.
I say that there is no any connection between those arenas, but political one. Obama needs an excuse to declare why America lost the war in Afghanistan, now he has.
America attacked Afghanistan as a choice, Israel has no other option but to fight those who fight her in the border and from inside.
The US military high command has no moral power to carry on the war and its consequences.
But, Israel has better claims to call against the US, because US steps touch the very core of Palestinian terror activity, and now Obama stands make the Palestinians more extremists and less patient, which can very soon expose and explode a new and bigger Intifada. That Israel can rightly blame the US and Obama for that consequences.

Abe Bird, Brussels

Hef

March 16th, 2010
12:41 pm

“America was not only viewed as weak,but its military posture in the region was eroding” In my OPINION this all originated with the “hold hands by the camp fire, apologize for anything under the sun,& bow to your enemy” tour shortly after Obama was elected. We were hated before(and still are),now laughed at as well.

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
12:42 pm

The message couldn’t be plainer: Israel’s intransigence could cost American lives.

Never in my life have I ever seen a more cowardly, spineless, backstabbing or immature statement as this, these liberals are the lowest of the low.

And they are being used by the same people that would kill all of us just as soon as they would kill all the Jews.

Israel better wise up, they have far more enemies than they think they do.

stands for decibels

March 16th, 2010
12:45 pm

Lots of Jewish people have made a good living so they qualify as evil rich people. hating Jews was a perfect fit for the libs.

Must be nice to work a gig that allows for heavy mid-day drinking.

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
12:46 pm

The Jews are climbing into the ovens without a struggle, again, and to answer the question, I don’t what their problem is.

Mick

March 16th, 2010
12:46 pm

In my opinion, this is all the result of our meddling in the middle east the past twenty years. Pat buchanan said it best: We started swatting the hornets nest and guess what? Hornets sting.

Hef

March 16th, 2010
12:47 pm

Report-I believe in what you say. One difference,Israel has only one friend anywhere-us. And with the current nut in the WH,they may not have us for long.

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
12:49 pm

yosef- If I showed up at your house, put a gun in your families face, told you to hop aboard this truck so that I could relocate you, what would be your reaction?

You should probably start thinking about it, so that you are prepared this time, although you have nothing whatsoever to fear from me, I don’t think you can say the same about alot of your “friends.”

Just sayin…..

StevenCee

March 16th, 2010
12:49 pm

For us to ever have any semblance of rational debate on this issue, we have to know that for many, criticism of the government of Israel’s policies is NOT any different than criticizing our own government, or that of say, Iran. Criticizing, disagreeing, with a nation’s policies does NOT mean you hate Jews, or Americans, or Iranians, in fact, oftentimes, government leaders are a poor reflection of who their people are, and of their people’s desires.

Bottom line, the overwhelming majority of Israelis & Palestinians, simply want this madness to end, so they can just live their lives, raise their families, and have peace. Extremists on both sides however, are intent on never seeing that occur, and until we put biases & personal agendas aside, and deal with this in truth, & that means no one, or no one side is without fault, it will mean only more & more violence, and catalyst for bloodshed around the world.

Hef

March 16th, 2010
12:52 pm

SteveCee-Nice thought,wishfull thinking.

USinUK

March 16th, 2010
12:52 pm

yay! I think we have a new record – criticism = anti-semitism on the second post!!! huzzah!!!

USinUK

March 16th, 2010
12:53 pm

“yosef- If I showed up at your house, put a gun in your families face, told you to hop aboard this truck so that I could relocate you, what would be your reaction?”

you mean like the Israelis did with the Palestinians???

Scout

March 16th, 2010
12:54 pm

Headline: “Army drops bayonet training and five mile runs …………. ”

First, men and women training together in boot camp, and now no bayonet training or long runs and repeal of “don’t rearend, don’t tailgate” just down the road.

Sure, they’ve articulated their reasons (you can always think of some) but the Army is getting soft …………. this does not bode well for the future.

Marines ……….. standby to repel boarders !!

http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5ilus48gmxYSgIdZt-1S3hGC13k1gD9EFP3MO1

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
12:54 pm

I can just imagine these mealy mouthed liberals telling Winston Churchill, who we kept alive with our Lend/Lease program, same as we virtually do with Israel, that his actions were causing the Nazis to kill American soldiers.

Thank God that men were still men back in those days.

Fly-On-The-Wall

March 16th, 2010
12:57 pm

I can’t believe the reactions here. IR/YW sounds almost anti-Semetic with his tone. Others have a similar tone but yet at the same time want the U.S. to cover all of Israel’s sins regardless of what they do. Shame on all of you. You offer nothing of substance and spout only hate.

Fly-On-The-Wall

March 16th, 2010
12:59 pm

IR/YW, men are still men today. You’re just not one of them.

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
12:59 pm

I know one thing, only a stone cold retard would think I am “anti-Semetic,” just sayin….

Jay

March 16th, 2010
1:00 pm

Note the update posted above.

stands for decibels

March 16th, 2010
1:00 pm

The Jews are climbing into the ovens without a struggle, again

Insulting and dishonest on so many levels…

Comments like Whiner & NIFfy’s remind me that being Rapture Ready is literally a full-time job for some folks.

And getting shrilly hysterical any time it’s so much as intimated that our complicated relationship with Israel might’ve become more complicated due to something Israel did, is just part of the drill.

(Mick, you favorably quote Pat Buchanan again, and I might have to punch you. Also.)

Southern Comfort (متعة الجنوبي)

March 16th, 2010
1:00 pm

Scout

Do they even make a bayonet for the M4A1?

Fly-On-The-Wall

March 16th, 2010
1:00 pm

IR/YW – you talk’n about Sarah?

Southern Comfort (متعة الجنوبي)

March 16th, 2010
1:01 pm

dB

I didn’t even want to touch that one…

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
1:05 pm

That is the kind of talk a country uses against an enemy, and that is why the reaction to it from the Jewish community has been so stark. AIPAC issued a statement the likes of which I’m not sure we’ve ever seen before, a directly confrontational take on the administration: “The Obama Administration’s recent statements regarding the U.S. relationship with Israel are a matter of serious concern. AIPAC calls on the Administration to take immediate steps to defuse the tension with the Jewish State.” Abe Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League, who doesn’t usually speak so directly, especially to Democratic presidents, said, “We are shocked and stunned at the Administration’s tone and public dressing down of Israel on the issue of future building in Jerusalem. We cannot remember an instance when such harsh language was directed at a friend and ally of the United States.”

Did you ever think you weren’t an ally anymore, my man?

Just sayin….

stands for decibels

March 16th, 2010
1:06 pm

And AmVet, I’m sorry–when did “Hebes” become an acceptable term?

sheesh. I’ll be back later when it doesn’t stink so bad in here.

Kamchak

March 16th, 2010
1:07 pm

“This is starting to get dangerous for us,” Biden reportedly told Netanyahu. “What you’re doing here undermines the security of our troops who are fighting in Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan. That endangers us and it endangers regional peace.”

Starting to get dangerous for us?

How long have we had troops in the ME?

StevenCee

March 16th, 2010
1:07 pm

“Never in my life have I ever seen a more cowardly, spineless, backstabbing or immature statement as this, these liberals are the lowest of the low.”
I Report, please explain how you call General Petraeus & CENTCOM “these liberals”? Are you nuts?
It’s an easy & cheap shot, as is blaming all our problems on the current president, & sure, if you hear endless repetition of these talking points 24/7 over the airwaves, it may even feel like it makes any sense, but while having different opinions are fine, you can’t have your own facts.

I don’t recall our previous president’s tough-talking, belligerent world posture doing very much to quell the rise of terrorism, nor move the two-state solution forward, even by inches. Again, it’s much easier to sit on the sidelines & toss bricks at Obama, while blaming him for the sins that preceded him. And by the way, I am neither a Democrat, nor am I without my own criticisms of the president, it’s just that mine are simply disagreements and not unfounded & biased scapegoating.

And wasn’t it the previous administration & GOP, who constantly harped on how important it was to take the advice of our military commanders, especially General Patraeus? Or do all previous conservative positions reverse themselves should a current president no longer have an “R” after their name?

Scout

March 16th, 2010
1:09 pm

Southern Comfort:

If they don’t …….. shame on them …………. they make every attachment to that rifle but a VCR hookup !

Southern Comfort (متعة الجنوبي)

March 16th, 2010
1:11 pm

לפעמים, אנשים צריכים לעצור חושב ארוכה וקשה לפני פתיחת פיות שלהם.

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
1:11 pm

Petraeus has been brainwashed, or he is under the direct threat of duress, just sayin…

Has any Israeli concession produced any sort of reciprocation in kind from the cut throats?

Not.

So now the attacks of 9/11 must have been because we were buddies with Israel, eh?

Iran hostage taking?

Southern Comfort (متعة الجنوبي)

March 16th, 2010
1:12 pm

Scout

I’ll have to check, but you’re right about them having everything else. I’ve seen some tricked out with some serious gear.

Scout

March 16th, 2010
1:13 pm

P.S.

The point is …………. it takes a special kind of person to be in the infantry and we are losing that for a multitude of reasons. “There’s the infantry and then there’s everybody else.” Author Unknown

“The rifleman fights without promise of either reward or relief. Behind every river there’s another hill, and behind that hill, another river. After weeks or months on the line only a wound can offer him the comfort of safety, shelter, and a bed. Those who are left to fight, fight on, evading death but knowing that with each day of evasion they have exhausted one more chance for survival. Sooner or later, unless victory comes, this chase must end on the litter or in the grave.”

General of the Army
Omar N. Bradley

101 Airborne

March 16th, 2010
1:16 pm

Southern Comfort: Yes, the M4A1 carbine still has a bayonet lug (which does not interefere with the “Picatinny” rail system that allows for other neat, high-tech “toys” to be added.
BTW everybody, what Israel DOES or DOES not do definitely carries implications for our troops and interests abroad. Any nation-state that chooses to act unilaterally (in this day and age) should expect to get spanked sooner or later (Hell, look what happened to us in Iraq once the “insurgency” ramped up into full-swing…)

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
1:18 pm

Where was all of the Patreaous mealy mouthing during his 3 years under Bushie, know what I’m sayin….

Matilda

March 16th, 2010
1:24 pm

Scout @ 1:13, care to list some of the reasons in that “multitude?” I’m interested.

RB from Gwinnett

March 16th, 2010
1:25 pm

I think it’s almost funny how all you libs keep wanting Israel to negotiate with the terrorists over the ownership of land when it’s not land the terrorists want but the total annihilation of Israel. If they can get you morons to help them do that 1 square mile at at time, they’re fine with that, but make no mistake about that being the goal. And they have ignored every peace treaty they’ve ever agreed to.

And you sit here crying about them building apartments in disputed lands while every day they wake up wondering if the next rocket attack is going to hit their kids school bus. It’s an enemy with no country, no flag, and no uniform that follows no rules of engagement and has no remorse. These thugs are no different than the VA Tech shooter or Columbine in their willingness to kill anybody and everybody and you morons support them.

While the US has been propping Israel up, we have also been the only thing keeping Israel from nuking them back to the stone age (not that they ever actually progressed past it…). When you pull that support and cut ties with Israel, don’t be surprised when that restraint is also removed and Israel does EVERYTHING it needs to do to protect itself from your soulmates who would have them all dead and gone.

Bosch

March 16th, 2010
1:28 pm

Damn squirrel! STOP ITTT!!!

sfd,

“Rapture Ready” – can I use that? Do you require royalty fees?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

As I wrote last night – our unconditional support for Israel has got to end – it is simply not worth American lives and our constant military presence over yonder……enough is enough.

RB from Gwinnett

March 16th, 2010
1:30 pm

“Where was all of the Patreaous mealy mouthing during his 3 years under Bushie, know what I’m sayin….”

Exactly. He was “Betrayus” until Obama came along. Now the libs love him. I guess their marching orders from HQ told them too cuase it’s obviouse their change of heart hasn’t come from them actually thinking for a change.

I Report :-) You Whine :-( Have A Drink On Us, obozo!

March 16th, 2010
1:31 pm

March 16 (Bloomberg) — U.S. employers won’t hire enough workers this year to lower the jobless rate much below the level of 9.7 percent reached in February, three Obama administration economic officials said today.

Looks like Bookman got the wrong White House talking points, hahaha.

NowReally

March 16th, 2010
1:31 pm

This entire situation with Israel reminds me of the times I came crying to my grandmother as a little girl: She would say, when you are surrounded by the enemy; don’t keep writing checks that your butt can’t cash. And don’t keep trying to hide behind my skirt when it bounce.

I learned two things:

1. Don’t start trouble
2. A good friend in time of need is hard to find. (never take them for granted)

Bosch

March 16th, 2010
1:33 pm

My assessment is that RB from Gwinnett is Rapture Ready!!

Der Homeland Security

March 16th, 2010
1:35 pm

RB from Gwinnett speaks with such certainty and authority on what terrorists want and what libs love. How does she know these things? No true God-fearing Christian American patriot knows these things unless she is in bed with our enemies, both here and abroad. Seize that trollop! Waterboarding will fix you up where the Massengil failed. And yes you will thank me for it afterward.

Scout

March 16th, 2010
1:39 pm

Maltilda:

Well since you were obviously not in the infantry :

1) Each generation of Americans is becoming softer ……… that’s why the military has such a tough time recruiting. Many of our young men are not only out of shape (behind computers all day) but they are fat and can’t walk around the block.

2) Not everyone can be trained to be an 0311 (USMC) or 11Bravo (Army). It takes something most people don’t have to follow orders, advance under direct fire and “close” with the enemy. I won’t even get into what it takes to kill with one’s bare hands or a bayonet or knife but in brief you must become more VICIOUS than your opponent or you die. It’s just that simple. That warrior mentality is NOT found in every recruit …………….. and even on the field of battle many just can’t do it.

3) The Army (not the Marines) even have co-ed boot camp which is just a real treat for instilling a combat mentality.

4) If they actually do away with “Don’t tailgate, Don’t rearend” that will further degrade our military effectiveness especially in the infantry. Now the Air Force, Navy and Coast Guard Chiefs of Staff don’t feel that way but they’re not in the infantry are they? The Army and Marine Corps Chiefs of Staff are not in favor of it.

I could go on but hopefuly you get the picture ……………..

By the way, if you are under 42 the Army will still take you so feel free to find out for yourself !

Scout
India Company
3rd Battalion, 4th Marines
Vietnam – 1967/68

Mick

March 16th, 2010
1:40 pm

sfd
**(Mick, you favorably quote Pat Buchanan again, and I might have to punch you. Also.)**

Be careful about that, I have an excellent counterpunch..

Bosch

March 16th, 2010
1:41 pm

“if you are under 42 the Army will still take you so feel free to find out for yourself !”

Dang! Missed it by a month.

Jay

March 16th, 2010
1:42 pm

Scout, you have no means of comparing today’s military to that of your youth. None.

Matilda

March 16th, 2010
1:49 pm

Scout, thanks for your answers! I am not unfamiliar with the struggles and thoughts of infantry soldiers, although I’m now just a squeak past the age of eligibility. Daddy was a fighter pilot, so his experiences were different from the brave men on the ground, and I like to hear different perspectives before pretending I actually know something. I still hold and cherish the bronze star earned by a sweetie back in D-storm, but there is much he does not wish to discuss. While I do indeed appreciate your honesty on these issues, I’ll note my disappointment that you attribute much of the problem to women and qu33rs who risk their lives willingly same as you did. (You volunteered, right?)

Sir Fruit du Vignoble (Tea-Bagger)

March 16th, 2010
1:50 pm

Stay the Course

ricardo

March 16th, 2010
1:53 pm

The Likudists control the government in Israel and the United States. The Likudists control AIPAC, which in turn controls our Congress. Money talks and the politicians could care less about the United States. They only care about selfish selves. Lobbying for Israel has destroyed the US government.

Franz Ferdinand

March 16th, 2010
1:57 pm

God is not mocked, repeal DADT, that goes for the Catholic Church as well as the US military…

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 16th, 2010
1:58 pm

Jay, “Israel’s intransigence could cost American lives”, come on and get real.

To paraphrase an olde, reliable saw, “Israeli’s don’t kill American soldiers, Arab jihadis, on behalf of their Palestinian cousins, do.”

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 16th, 2010
2:01 pm

Scout
1:39 pm

G-d bless you for your service. Your points are all dead on.

Franz Ferdinand

March 16th, 2010
2:04 pm

Scout,

God bless you for your homophobia….your a true patriot.

Bosch

March 16th, 2010
2:10 pm

Franz,

I LOVE your band!

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 16th, 2010
2:14 pm

Franz Ferdinand
2:04 pm

You are the cancer eating America from within!

Mick

March 16th, 2010
2:19 pm

I think that’s a good point; why doe’s petraeus seem more acceptble now with obama then before with bush? No matter, we need to end these wars immediately and start repairing this country.

Paul

March 16th, 2010
2:19 pm

[["Everywhere they went, the message was pretty humbling," a Pentagon officer familiar with the briefing says. "America was not only viewed as weak, but its military posture in the region was eroding."]]

Why was the White House stunned? Because one year into their administration America was viewed as weak and its military posture was eroding. That’s eroding going downhill. What has happened in a year to drive that?

I find this more than a bit troubling. “Petraeus’s reason (for including the West Bank and Gaza in CENTCOM’s area) was straightforward: with U.S. troops deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan, the U.S. military had to be perceived by Arab leaders as engaged in the region’s most troublesome conflict.”

Our military has to be seen by Arab leaders as engaged in the Israeli-Palestinian issue?!?? Say what? Perhaps a journalist will ferret out the reasoning from Gen Petraeus on this one.

Note: Is this,as Perry seemed to say, what Petraeus told the White House? Or did the administration extrapolate? Either way, it seems if one tries hard enough, one can make a case for just about anything: “The vice president told his Israeli hosts that since many people in the Muslim world perceived a connection between Israel’s actions and US policy, any decision about construction that undermines Palestinian rights in East Jerusalem could have an impact on the personal safety of American troops fighting against Islamic terrorism.” The message couldn’t be plainer: Israel’s intransigence could cost American lives.”

So the Muslim world see the US an Israeli actions as linked. If we don’t do what Muslims want, they will kill American soldiers? Really? So the answer is: connect Palestinian actions and US policy? That is an interesting conclusion. If so, it gives an incredible viewpoint from the military – nothing is more important in pursuing US interests than US casualties. That is, I think, misguided.

Finally, what the Israeli ‘response’ should tell the Muslim world is that there is not a connection between Israeli actions and US policy. But alas, that prejudice will, I think, continue to prevail in the Muslim world.

Scout

March 16th, 2010
2:26 pm

Jay:

Well, I see since you are recently returned from being embedded with the Marines in Afghanistan that you do know everything about infantry combat – even from generation to generation. I would like to hear of your adventures. By the way, are you 42 yet ?

But ……… in answer to your proposition, of course I can compare today’s military vs. that of my youth because I know veterans from both era’s and what they say/feel about our current military. And guess what …….. a firefight with a company of NVA in the jungles of Nam is very similar to a firefight with the Taliban in the hills of Afghanistan. But if the rules are different ………….. there are many problems for the poor grunt on the ground.

Have you ever noticed that each generation “claims” our military now has the best personnel, training and weapons of any generation ? Best weapons yes, best training (not necessarily) and best personnel/courage (not necessarily by a long shot).

For example ……… let’s just compare the “courage” thing.

Afghanistan: Armored vehicles to ride in, full body armor to wear, medic or corpsman immediately available, helicopter medivac to the best surgery teams in the world, evacuation to an acute care center in Germany, etc., etc.

Pickets Charge: Lined up in rows, no armor, .50 cals. and grape shot coming at you (if you gain your objective you get to bayonet fight), no medics (only stretcher bearers after the battle), beastly medical care, a gut shot means a slow, painful death, etc., etc.

Now ………. you want to compare the courage of those generations?

Jay, you are a good “writer” but you speak of things sometimes you know nothing about.

Scout

March 16th, 2010
2:26 pm

WyldByllHyltnyr : Thank you sir. Some of us have “seen the elephant”.

Bosch

March 16th, 2010
2:26 pm

Mick,

“why doe’s petraeus seem more acceptble now with obama then before with bush?”

Pardon me, but I think that’s a crock of bs. I think to most normal people Petraeus was always okay – with the, as Paul likes to say, lalaliberals, he was the devil incarnate, but I don’t know anyone except for the MoveOn.orgers that had anything bad to say about him.

Normal

March 16th, 2010
2:27 pm

Wyld Byll…you’re funny, ignorant, but funny!

Traitors?

March 16th, 2010
2:27 pm

Israel first America lasts should be tried for treason! You see where the loyalty lies when attacking a four star general who engineered the Iraq surge because he thinks greater Israel is harming U.S. interest and security. Petraeus is not a liberal he is an AMERICAN PATRIOT. What he says should be taken over any AIPAC or other traitors to America. And he is absolutely right. If you looked at Arab news around the region there is and has been a major emphasis on the plight of the Palestinians. Evictions, demolitions, land grabs, refugees, blockades, this is causing a major credibility gap with America fighting two wars there. American allies are seen as puppets of Israel. Israel is in constant violation of international law. Arabs see the double standard and our sworn enemies like Al Queda, Iran, the Taliban all use it as propaganda against the U.S. Put simply Israel is becoming more of a liability than an asset. Their contempt for the U.S. is evident as they try to embarrass the U.S. They are deliberately trying to make us look weak and harm our interest! And some traitors want to put the interest of Israel over that of the U.S. They should be hanged for treason!

Scout

March 16th, 2010
2:29 pm

Matilda:

Yes, I volunteered (was not drafted) but served with many who were drafted into the Marines (big surprise for them that day as they thought they were Army bound).

Anything, that weakens the ability of an infantry unit to fight (anything) is just plain wrong – why? Because it’s not a game. You don’t get up afterwards. You STAY dead!

Mick

March 16th, 2010
2:30 pm

Bosch

If nixon can get a pardon, I’ll extend one to you and on your point – you are absolutely correct sir..

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 16th, 2010
2:33 pm

Bosch
2:26 pm

“…I don’t know anyone except for the MoveOn.orgers that had anything bad to say about him.”

Let’s try Hillary Clunton and her “willing suspension of disbelief”, John Kerry who said the good General’s troops were terrorizing Iraqui women and children in the dead of night, ALGore who said Petreaus caused global warming.

John

March 16th, 2010
2:35 pm

This is such B.S. The Palestinians lob bombs and missiles into Israel EVERYDAY. If the Mexicans did that to us, we’d crush them immediately without regard to what the rest of the world thinks. When Obama was elected I promised myself not to act like the libs did towrds W. I promised myslef I would treat Obama with respect and, as a citizen, assist him to succeed because he was my President even though I didn’t vote for him. But, the further along we go I’m having a difficult time with my promise. This guy does absolutely zero I agree with. If Israel can’t count on us, who can?

Mick

March 16th, 2010
2:39 pm

Scout – why start at picket’s charge? In every conflict there are those who can learn and adapt to become an effective soldier. Most will lean on their unit and it helps to have commanders that you trust and respect. There will always be those soldiers that are natural born killers, and rest assured we want them and need them to be out front. Times may change but human nature is sometimes annoyingly consistent. Those who fight today could be plugged into any conflict of the past and be just as resilient because thats what a good soldier doe’s – adapt to the situation. I repect your service in one of our toughest conflicts both mentally and physically.

Bosch

March 16th, 2010
2:39 pm

Mick,

That was more of a response to RB than you. :-)

Wyld Byll – whatever – link to the source, put it in context and we’ll talk…..otherwise go back to your hole.

Bosch

March 16th, 2010
2:40 pm

“The Palestinians lob bombs and missiles into Israel EVERYDAY.”

Everyday? Really? Gee, I missed that news story this morning. :roll:

Jackie

March 16th, 2010
2:48 pm

There are no women combat infantry troops in the military. Women and men train together for basic training, but combat infantry for women is not allowed.

Traitors?

March 16th, 2010
2:48 pm

John there are many more thousand of Palestinians killed compared to Israelis. Israel bombs the civilian population with advanced weapons given to them by us the U.S.A. Heck before we helped make their military so powerful Israel used terrorism against the British and Arabs in British Mandated Palestine. Wiki the “Bombing of the King David Hotel”. In fact the leader of the terrorist group Irgun ,Menachen Begin became Prime Minister of Israel. Israel is definitely no better and maybe worse than the Israelis. This is our credibility gap with Arabs. We are directly implicit in anything Israel does because of all the aid weapons and support we give them. Israel has no moral authority. They force Palestinians off their land, they control their lives. There are millions of Palestinians living in occupied territory Gaza and West Bank that have no rights and their daily lives are controlled by Israel. They are stateless. Their land is constantly confiscated and this is all over Arab news. The Arabs hate America because of our foreign policy with respect to Israel. Petraeus know this. Anybody that went to the region knows this. We are harming our interests with blind support for Israel. The region is always at the verge of war. Oil prices are unstable. Iran is becoming a major power playing off this conflict. And Israel has most of the blame. Yes that is right. There is the Saudi Peace Plan. U.N. resolution 242, The Road Map, Oslo, I can go on and on. Everybody knows the parameters of a peace plan, but as long as we keep giving Israel unconditional support Israel is going to keep taking more land in settlements.

Jackie

March 16th, 2010
2:53 pm

Isn’t it ironic that there are many that will impure the integrity of a professional military officer and the military as a whole to support a foreign country?

Are these people citizens of the USA, or, is their politics outstripping the so-called patriotism they exhibit by supporting an ally?

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 16th, 2010
2:57 pm

Traitors?
2:48 pm

“This is our credibility gap with Arabs.” Hardly. The disconnect is simple we (and Israel, too) are civilized, they are animals. One only needed to watch Arafat’s funeral to understand the absence of civilization in their culture.

You folks better read the Bible, we need to be on Israel’s (i.e. The Lord G-d, himself’s)side on this when things go down.

Normal

March 16th, 2010
2:59 pm

You folks better read the Bible, we need to be on Israel’s (i.e. The Lord G-d, himself’s)side on this when things go down.

HORSE FEATHERS!

Scout

March 16th, 2010
3:00 pm

Jackie:

Your comment ……….

“There are no women combat infantry troops in the military. Women and men train together for basic training, but combat infantry for women is not allowed.”

They may not be 11Bravos but they ARE in combat …………. riding as “M.P.” on convoys, etc.

Now if that convoy is ambused and stopped and it turns into an “infantry” battle ………. what’s the difference? At that point it’s even worse because they were trained as M.P.’s and NOT infantry.

I personally think they should not be in that situation but they are ……………..

Mick

March 16th, 2010
3:01 pm

**You folks better read the Bible**

I don’t recall reading of jesus choosing sides. As a matter of fact, the good samaritan is about people (samaritans) that the jews didn’t think too highly of.

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 16th, 2010
3:02 pm

Normal
2:59 pm

Get ready for an eternity of teeth-gnashing, podnah. But what’s one more, right?

ricardo

March 16th, 2010
3:04 pm

Support our troops! Dump Israel. No more $$ to Israel until they deserve it. No more $$ to Israel until they enter into a peace agreement that benefits the USA, not Israel. Git rid of all the Pols bought off by Israel and see how fast peace will reign in the Middle East.

Mick

March 16th, 2010
3:04 pm

WyldByllHyltnyr

**Get ready for an eternity of teeth-gnashing, podnah. But what’s one more, right?**

I thought judgement was reserved for the almighty?

Scout

March 16th, 2010
3:04 pm

Jay:

Re: my 2:26 ……….

I’m still waiting for your little expose’ on your combat time with the Marines in Afghanistan.

Captain Oveour

March 16th, 2010
3:04 pm

Scout,

Do you like movies about gladiators?

Jackie

March 16th, 2010
3:05 pm

@John

You contend the USA would not tolerate Mexicans shooting at our citizens or soldiers on our soil.

http://forum.prisonplanet.com/index.php?topic=76594.0

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 16th, 2010
3:06 pm

Mick
3:01 pm

“I don’t recall reading of jesus choosing sides.” You must have never read any portion of the Bible. Jesus always sided with: a) the righteous (in this case, Israel and the US); and b) The Lord of Hosts (who, in this case, has chosen Israel as his people and a critical tool for end times.) Jesus was never neutral toward evil (in this caser the murderous, uncivilized Palestinians.)

WyldByllHyltnyr

March 16th, 2010
3:09 pm

Mick

March 16th, 2010
WyldByllHyltnyr

“”Get ready for an eternity of teeth-gnashing, podnah. But what’s one more, right?”"

That’s right, judgement is His, but the Lord G-d has told us the fruits of a life of rebellion. I merely repeat for it is not my judgement.

stands for decibels

March 16th, 2010
3:09 pm

Bosch @ 1.28, I did not come up with that term.

These folks, apparently, did:

http://raptureready.com/

Jackie

March 16th, 2010
3:10 pm

@Scout

For that matter, women fill all other roles offered by the military and being in “combat” does not excuse your MOS.

Do you advocate bring back the draft?

Scout

March 16th, 2010
3:11 pm

Captain Oveour :

If you want to debate something, have at it. Othewise, I don’t waste my time.

Bosch

March 16th, 2010
3:13 pm

sfd,

Well, thanks for that. And for your enjoyment, here is one of the FAQs from that website:

“Is the Pope the Antichrist?

I don’t think the Pope can be the Antichrist, because the Antichrist will likely be accepted by the Jews as their Messiah. In order to biblically qualify, the Messiah must be of Jewish origin. Because the Pope heads an organization of one billion followers, it is very logical to conclude that the Pontiff will someday fulfill a major the role in the Antichrist’s false church. “

Paul

March 16th, 2010
3:13 pm

Scout 3:04

I believe Jay’s point was that the military of today is markedly different, in operations as well as equipment, than it was 40 years ago.

So I’ll use this as an opportunity to make another pitch to bring the Army (and Marines?) up to the 21st century and save billions (yes, billions) of dollars in the process: eliminate, or at least drastically reduce (by about 95%) parachute training.

But the Army loves that tradition as much as they loved their horses in the 1930s.

Normal

March 16th, 2010
3:14 pm

Wyld Byll, the freeway to Hades is paves with “good intions”, but I’ll wait at the door for you…

Mick

March 16th, 2010
3:14 pm

**murderous, uncivilized Palestinians.**

Ever been there? I have and find it stunning that you condemn a whole people in the name of god. Let he who is without sin cast the first stone.

Doggone/GA

March 16th, 2010
3:16 pm

“And for your enjoyment, here is one of the FAQs from that website:”

How about this one: I’ve seen, on other blogs, that “the antichrist will be everything Jesus was not”…but I wasn’t too popular when I pointed out that that seems to be saying the antichrist will be a woman!

Paul

March 16th, 2010
3:16 pm

stands for decibles 3:09

Dang, I thought that said “rupture ready” and I was about to schedule a medical exam -