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Retired General Rebuts Bush Rhetoric

Posted on May 14, 2007
Paul Eaton

In Vote Vets’ latest ad to feature a general speaking out against the war, retired Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton refutes one of the administration’s favorite talking points: “President Bush says he listens to his military commanders. Well, Mr. President, I was one of those commanders and you weren’t listening when we warned you of the dangers we’d face invading Iraq.”

Watch it:

Fore more, visit VoteVets.Org.


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By Forkboy, May 17, 2007 at 9:17 am Link to this comment

Regarding #70087 by don knutsen on 5/15 at 9:18 am

Yes, thank you.  I agree that for a member of the armed services to speak out against the Commander in Chief is simply not realistic given the Uniform Code of Conduct.  It also wouldn’t play well in general (no pun intended) for the military to openly argue with the civilian authorities - that’s a slippery slope we do not need.

But yes, Colin Powell is the ass who should be strung up for his abandonment of the people of this nation who he has clearly betrayed.  Here was a man for whom I could have possibly voted in a Presidential election at one time.  Instead, he has shown he has neither the courage or conviction to step forward and tell America what much of it already knows and believes:  the current junta (excuse me: administration) lied to us to get us into Iraq.  With such knowledge we could finally proceed to impeach W and the rest of his minions, but Powell doesn’t have the courage to be honest with us. 

For that I will never forgive him.

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By Lou, May 16, 2007 at 12:37 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

damn those dylan lyrics are amazing

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By DennisD, May 15, 2007 at 9:11 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Now that Bu$hChen have appointed a “war czar” they have an official sweeper to follow the GOP elephants and clean up the crap. Good f**kin luck with that one buddy!
Our contractor in chief will revert to quasi-commander-in-chief for photo ops only and otherwise busy himself with the trivalities of his presidency which his feeble mind seems perfectly capable of handling. A steady diet of ribbon cutting, pork barrel bill signing and baby kissing is what we expect from our leaders and Bu$h will not disappoint. Never mind, he’ll probably fu*k that up too.

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By cann4ing, May 15, 2007 at 6:42 pm Link to this comment

Re comment #70075 by Conrad K. Maisch.  Thanks for the reprint of “Masters of War.”  Perhaps it’s that the music business has just gone too corporate, but it would be nice of today’s generation produced another Bob Dylan.

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By Douglas Chalmers, May 15, 2007 at 1:33 pm Link to this comment

‘Forward, the global war on terror!’
Was there a man dismay’d ?
Not tho’ the soldier knew
The Bush administration had blunder’d:
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do & die,
Into the valley of Death
Tour of duty 6 months now 15!

Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
Volley’d & thunder’d;
Storm’d at with shot and shell,
Blindly they stayed the course,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of Hell
Halliburton’s got some beer and just as well.

Paraphrased from “The Charge Of The Light Brigade” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson memorializing events in the Battle of Balaclava - another ‘fools’ errand’ of faded empires and feckless politicians.

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By don knutsen, May 15, 2007 at 10:18 am Link to this comment

re: Conrad Maisch’s blog at the beginning of this…

I agree that it wouldv’e been alot better if these generals had made their statements prior to retiring, but I think, given the code of conduct of the military that would be unrealistic. The person who should’ve resigned to make a statement early on was Colin Powell…but he was “too much the loyal soldier” to bring himself to do that, even though he knew full well he was helping to spread the lies. Atleast these generals are coming out now, pointing out that bu$h wasn’t interested in the views of the experienced military leaders. Only in following the oil greed which is the world bu$h was raised in as a spoiled rich brat who has never been held to account. The failed buisness man in every venture, the governor who enjoyed his power in putting the most people to death in Texas, the would be soldier who used daddy’s connections to keep himself out of the war in vietnam. Bu$h’s twisted version of reality bears little resemblence to the real world. He will never admit to a mistake, he will never be interested in the truth, he is a sociopath who belongs behind bars for any number of crimes. He has without a doubt caused more destruction and death then any other ten inviduals in our overstretched penal system. I’d encourage everyone to writetheir representitives in favor of impeachemnt proceedings beginning as soon as is possible. Each day longer he and Cheney remain in office, the hole they are digging us into grows deeper.

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By Leefeller, May 15, 2007 at 9:16 am Link to this comment

Very rare is the general who will speak out publicly against the Commander in Chief, in this case Commander Cod Piece.  Generals are accountable to the decider guy, who is accountable only to his personal agenda. 
I do not blame the generals, I blame the system of no accountablity.

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By Gabir, May 15, 2007 at 9:09 am Link to this comment

Masters of War (Bob Dylan)                                Come you masters of war
You that build all the guns
You that build the death planes
You that build the big bombs
You that hide behind walls
You that hide behind desks
I just want you to know
I can see through your masks

You that never done nothin’
But build to destroy
You play with my world
Like it’s your little toy
You put a gun in my hand
And you hide from my eyes
And you turn and run farther
When the fast bullets fly

Like Judas of old
You lie and deceive
A world war can be won
You want me to believe
But I see through your eyes
And I see through your brain
Like I see through the water
That runs down my drain

You fasten the triggers
For the others to fire
Then you set back and watch
When the death count gets higher
You hide in your mansion
As young people’s blood
Flows out of their bodies
And is buried in the mud

You’ve thrown the worst fear
That can ever be hurled
Fear to bring children
Into the world
For threatening my baby
Unborn and unnamed
You ain’t worth the blood
That runs in your veins

How much do I know
To talk out of turn
You might say that I’m young
You might say I’m unlearned
But there’s one thing I know
Though I’m younger than you
Even Jesus would never
Forgive what you do

Let me ask you one question
Is your money that good
Will it buy you forgiveness
Do you think that it could
I think you will find
When your death takes its toll
All the money you made
Will never buy back your soul

And I hope that you die
And your death’ll come soon
I will follow your casket
In the pale afternoon
And I’ll watch while you’re lowered
Down to your deathbed
And I’ll stand o’er your grave
‘Til I’m sure that you’re dead

Copyright © 1963; renewed 1991 Special Rider Music

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By ShockandAwe, May 15, 2007 at 7:22 am Link to this comment

I have to agree with Conrad as well. Where was this public outcry before my brothers and I were sent into the meat grinder?

If I had to say something positive, I’m glad they are speaking out now as it is typically General Officer courtesy to not bash the current Commander-in-Chief.

So, I can’t say they did the absolute least they could do. That would be General Tommy Franks! :D

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By Hammo, May 15, 2007 at 7:15 am Link to this comment

Gen. Eaton, Gen. Batiste and many other military men and women, veterans and citizens of all kinds are showing courage and honor in their positions on the continued occupation of Iraq.

The initial decision to invade Iraq, the way it has been conducted, the motivations and greed behind many of the activities involved appear to have been deceptive and dishonorable.

Gens. Eaton, Batiste and others are providing the good leadership that is so lacking in the Bush-Cheney administration. Take a look at:

“‘Strength, Honor, Compassion’ are words to live by in these times” (

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By neon woody, May 15, 2007 at 6:38 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

While I agree in sentiment with Conrad, I do not feel these particular officers are deserving of my scorn. They had jobs to do: to utilize the resources available to attempt to effect polciies handed down by their Commander-in-Chief. It would not have been possible to vocally protest those policies’ shortcomings while putting forth a best-faith effort on their behalf.

Maj. Gen. Batiste has already LOST a job (with CBS) because of his involvement with VoteVets.Org; I’m not sure how that constitutes double-dipping. If one were simply greedy, one knows where to cash in on this occupation: in charge, in Iraq, where the US has sent billions and billions of dollars in bales of shrink-wraped bills that are gone with no accounting.

George Tenet, on the other hand, is the very model of a modern major scoundrel.

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By THOMAS BILLIS, May 15, 2007 at 2:20 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

He did not listen to those commanders.He is listening to these commanders.Turns out he had a waxy buildup in his ears but now that he had the wax drained he can hear these commanders.When you said what the fuck are you doing moron.He thought you said good luck when you pour it on.Sounds about right to me.

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By QuyTran, May 14, 2007 at 9:22 pm Link to this comment

Oho, Oho, Oho ! The Commander-In-Chief is the guy who was a draft dodger ! We feel sorry for all Generals !

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By kevin, May 14, 2007 at 9:12 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Bush and Cheney aren’t going to listen to any retired Generals. There is no profit for them in that for them or their Saudi friends or Haliburton. More than 70% of the population disapproves and Bush and at least 60% think we should get out of Iraq. Bush doesn’t work or listen to the people. He listens to his pocket book go chi-ching. He took us to war based on his and Cheneys lies. The military men and women still active in the service should say “no” to him and “yes” to the citizens of the U.S. Get out of Iraq and come home. Let the shadow military fight alone. They are making a great deal more money than our service men. Let them earn it. Maybe they should turn on their bosses and torture them for the truth on how much they are bilking the U.S. for so they can live in Dubais for the rest of their pathetic lives. While they are at it, they should water board Tenet, Rumsfeld, Cheney and Bush. They support it, so let them experience it.

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By rowdy, May 14, 2007 at 9:07 pm Link to this comment

conrad, i actually agree with you. i was about to post a comment; i love it when the professional war mongers disagree with the deciderer guy. too bad they didn’t speak up several years ago. you beat me to it conrad. as mark lenard, playing the evil romulan said to captain kirk;in another life i could have called you friend.

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Gabir's avatar

By Gabir, May 14, 2007 at 7:01 pm Link to this comment

I really have a special place in my heart for all the people in the government and the military establishment who wait to retire before offering up their revelations of “Truth” . They represent a rare breed of scoundrel .
    Their order of priorities seems to be :
1)Swallow and follow the current administration’s flawed policies until they are securely retired .
2)“Double Dipping” by receiving lucrative income from media interviews , speaking engagements and publishing contracts at the expense of lives lost and grand theft by selling the “truth” for millions of dollars after securely retiring instead of offering it freely in a timely fashion which would save lives and ultimately our country .
3)Ride off into the sunset or the political arena with their flawed sense of conscience intact .

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