I guess all those months serving at the feet of annointed God-General David Petraeus has turned Public Affairs Officer Col. Steve Boylan into one arrogant prick. While the authenticity of the first email is still in doubt, I think we can agree the subsequent ones are legit, and Boylan is a real jerk.
Compare the almost matter-of-fact responses that right-wing PR bots like the Confederate Yankee get, and the taunting and juvenile tone Boylan uses when addressing Greenwald:
I am interested in this issue. What I am doing about it does not concern you. Interesting is what I find it.
Whether I agree with what the email says or not is not an issue I wish to discuss with you, as I decided after our last exchange that I would not take the time or efforts to engage with you.
Is there a reason why you posted this?
Does it mean I hate the troops if I call Col. Steve Boylan an asshole?
At any rate, this all stems from Greenwald’s earlier post this week regarding the obvious and overt politicization of the military that has taken place during the past few years, and I think it is important to visit an older post from Stiftung Leo Strauss (thank you Jim Henley for turning me on to this guy):
Congress has devolved into a parody Duma. The White House its own parody – pick your favorite analogy. A liberal democracy should not be exposed thusly to a tightly organized, culturally aloof-if-not-disdainful, military fresh from defeat and facing budget cuts and perhaps future deployments. Even now, the rarity of service makes it almost mandatory to do obeisance before one who has. Regardless how one feels about the Warlord’s disasterous policies, this is not healthy for a democracy. Whether Dubya general shops, hides behind them or Petreus calls it as he sees it, the totemistic deployment of veterans and the outsourcing of decision-making to the military under these circumstances forecasts more disconcerting events on the horizon.
If Congress, the Judiciary and the Executive had not been so debased by the Warlord and Movement’s radicalism we might feel less concern. So here’s to a draft. Not just to “share the burden”. But also to ensure that our military shares liberal democratic culture and values.
There is cause for concern. The right wing is sowing the seeds for Dolchstoßlegende even while claiming victory or progress or positive trends or however we are euphemizing it today, and there appears to be a significant portion of the Officer Corps who are willing to go along with it. The arrogance of Boylan is not only a symptom of this problem, it is one of the intended outcomes.
*** Update ***
The Commisar has a question for me:
If Oberst Boylan had sent Greenwald an email threatening to run over his Beagle with a Panzer, would that be a serious threat to America, or not?
It would be weird, but no.
But that isn’t really what this is all about. And it wasn’t just a soldier sending a rude email to Glenn (does the Colonel even admit to sending the email yet?). It was a bizarre series of taunting e-mails (if legit) from the PAO who works (unless I am mistaken) directly for Gen. Petraeus. That takes us to a whole other ball game.
Again, I believe there is enough anecdotal and documented evidence of the politicization of at least a portion of the Officer Corps (the issues discussed in the original Greenwald piece cite a few, other examples that immediately spring to mind are the Air Force Academy imbroglio). I think that is problematic. Perhaps the Commisar thinks I am overstating the case. I hope he is right.