Criticism for OPSEC video

| August 22, 2012

SO, it had to begin; folks are beginning to come out to criticize the people at OPSEC who released a video last week complaining that the Obama Administration is releasing secrets for political purposes and that Obama is taking personal credit for things that the military and intelligence community has done over the last decade.

General Dempsey, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff joins the chorus;

“If someone uses the uniform, whatever uniform, for partisan politics, I am disappointed because I think it does erode that bond of trust we have with the American people,” Joint Chiefs Chairman Gen. Martin Dempsey said in an interview with Fox News while flying back from a trip to Afghanistan and Iraq.

“Is their criticism valid? I won’t comment on that,” Dempsey said onboard a C17 military aircraft en route back from the Middle East. “Is it useful? No, it’s not useful. It’s not useful to me.”

The Associated Press reports the one-way conversation from Admiral McRaven, President Obama and John Kerry;

“Make no mistake about it, it was the president of the United States that shouldered the burden for this operation, that made the hard decisions,” the leader of the raid, Adm. Bill McRaven, said at this summer’s Aspen Security Forum.

“I don’t take these folks too seriously,” President Barack Obama told the newspaper The Virginian-Pilot on Monday. “One of their members is a birther who denies I was born here, despite evidence to the contrary.” Special Ops OPSEC member ret. Maj. Gen. Paul Vallely, who appears in the group’s film, has publicly questioned Obama’s birth in Hawaii.

Sen. John Kerry, D-Mass., compared the group’s campaign to the “Swift Boat” attacks that questioned his service during the Vietnam War. Though later discredited, the claims were partially blamed for unseating his 2004 presidential campaign.

John Kerry? Really? The guy who all but wore his uniform every day of the 2004 Presidential Campaign?

I don’t see anyone criticizing Jon Soltz who uses his military service like a shield from criticism. He runs VoteVets which is supposed to advance the political careers of veterans, but in the last election, they funded Harry Reid’s campaign. Harry Reid who fit their own definition of a draft dodger as they apply the definition to Republicans.

Did anyone criticize Paul Rieckhoff when he attacked the Bush Administration while he was still a captain in the Reserves when he presented the Democrat’s opposition to a Bush radio address?

And what about in New Hampshire the other day when Democrat Senator Jeanne Shaheen introduced the President as the guy who led the raid that got Obama? I didn’t hear the President refute that and humbly give credit where it was due.

And, oh, yeah, read the President’s comment above again – and you wonder why I’ve been saying that birthers aren’t helpful Obama disparaged the whole group because they had one birther among them. Never mind that there are Democrats and people who voted for Obama in OPSEC, their good intentions are cast aside because of one birther.

“They have a good point. I wish there was better OPSEC (operational security), and fewer leaks,” said retired Navy SEAL Capt. Rick Woolard, who commanded several SEAL units. “But I would prefer that SEALs and other special operators would sit down and shut the hell up.”

Yeah, if they’d shut up on both sides of the issue, your criticism would be valid, Captain.

More from Mr. Hanson.

Category: 2012 election, Barack Obama/Joe Biden, Veterans Issues

Comments (28)

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  1. NHSparky says:

    I would opine that the people who put their sacks on the line had a lot more riding on that mission than any of the chairborne warriors who have flapped their cocksuckers on this issue, whose stars and jobs are dependent not upon bringing their people home alive and in one piece so much as doing the bidding of an administration that would sooner bend them over and ass rape them like a prison bitch than give them the time of day.

    Sorry for the Faulkner-like length of the sentence. It’s been a long night, and like the SEALs in that video, I’ve little tolerance for petty political bullshit, especially where the lives and mission of my brothers are concerned.

  2. Twist says:

    Cue Vote Vets crowd in 3….2….1

  3. 679Prig says:

    the key term there is EX-officers/NCOs/EMs….they can speak their minds after their service as they like….

    Methinks that the august CJCS protesteth too much…must be some fire there in all that smoke…

  4. rb325th says:

    Ummm okay, so we should never ever express any opinions at all… ever? Sorry there butt kisser in chief, the men who are pushing that story have been there and done that and earned the right to express their opinions. At least they are not phonies like many of the crowd that supports obummer.
    No one is “using the uniform”, these are all veterans and did their time and are not subject to the restrictions of the UCMJ.

  5. AndyN says:

    “It’s not useful to me.”

    That’s all you needed to say, Gen Dempsey. You’re a political appointee and and anything that isn’t useful to your political patron is obviously not useful to you. Now how about answering the broader question as to whether it’s useful to the nation you swore to serve for honorable men to point out the failings of the president you owe your job to.

    Oh, and as for this…
    “If someone uses the uniform, whatever uniform, for partisan politics, I am disappointed because I think it does erode that bond of trust we have with the American people.”
    That’s a double-edged knife right there. It also erodes the bond of trust the military has with its civilian leadership when that leadership uses the military for partisan politics.

  6. J.M. says:

    I’m kinda disappointed by Gen Dempseys remarks. I’d expect better from someone who has shown as much concern in the past for Soldiers as Gen Dempsey has. And I really hope this was one of those things he was volun-told to do and his position hasn’t gone to his head.

  7. Stacy0311 says:

    So I’m guessing Wesley Clark and the other retired hacks who support Obama need to STFU also?

  8. ANCCPT says:

    GEN Dempsy is quoted on Fox this morning as saying that the ‘,military must remain apolitical’.
    I agree with those words 100%. An apolitical military is essential to the safety and freedom of our republic.
    However, I’d expect the General, with all the military and civilian education he has, to recognize the historically significant role that American veterans have played in the politics that have shaped our county.
    These guys are private citizens, who did their time. They can say whatever the hell they want about the government and it’s leadership. This is one of those pesky ‘Rights’ we keep hearing about.

    If there are active duty/reservists speaking out? Hammer em, General. But these guys don’t fall under the UCMJ nor military customs anymore. They are no different in the eyes of the law than any other John Q.

  9. Old Trooper says:

    I’m not a “birther” and I really hate that the left gets to inject one of their pet labels onto the public vocabulary once again. Gen. Vallely has every right to ask questions. That he does all of a sudden opens him to ridicule from both sides? Why is it that the left, and Obama, get to set the rules for what is open for discussion or who is valid to be involved in questioning their motives and actions? Just because the General has questions about Obama’s place of birth it automatically invalidates any other issues or questions he is involved with? Really? I’m glad some around here are willing to let the leftist buttmunches tell us who can and can’t ask questions, or about what.

    The problem that I have with “birthers” are the ones who use it as an excuse to refuse to fulfill their military obligations. That doesn’t cover Gen. Vallely.

  10. valerie says:

    People who no longer serve in uniform can say what they please, even with respect to politics, and it is no disgrace to their (former) uniform. Any other result would disqualify former military people from running for public office.

    People who have experience with security problems have something relevant to contribute to our public discussion about leaks. The accusation that the leaks were made for political gain notwithstanding, the nature of the criticism is not necessarily politically biased.

    These men are in good company. Sen. Diane Feinstein brought this issue up several times. Last I heard, she was a prominent Democrat.

    John F’n Kerry also criticized the leaking as dangerous

    “A number of those leaks, and others in the last months about drone activities and other activities, are frankly all against national-security interests,” said Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass.), chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee. “I think they’re dangerous, damaging, and whoever is doing that is not acting in the interest of the United States of America.”

    So, I do not understand why he criticizes former servicemen for agreeing with him on a general issue of national security.

  11. Smaj says:

    Little Marty Dempsey proves, with each passing day, to be a toadying political hack.

  12. Larry Rasczak says:

    Could somebody please explain to me how sending in a team to kill OSAMA BIN LADEN is a “difficult” or “gutsy” call?

    “Hello, Mr. President? Yes, it’s Jack sir… well good afternoon to you too Sir… Yes… lovely as ever Sir, thanks for asking…. Um..Sir, I have some important news you need to hear… no you are still on for golf Sir… Well Sir, CIA says we found Osama Bin Laden…yes that’s right Sir, “the 9-11 guy”… um no we didn’t get him already… No…that was Saddam Hussein, Sir…he was “the Iraq Guy”…well they are different countries sir… yes sir… I understand how that can be confusing Mr. President… Yes I fully agree…Sir… uh sir?… Well we know where he is… Osama Bin Laden, Sir…well we found him and we want to send in a team to kill him… yes we know for sure it is him… DNA tells us it is him… yes we know exactly where he is Sir; but we don’t know how long he will be staying… Well sir, we have team ready to go, you just have to say the word… yes we know for sure he was behind 9-11 Sir… uh… 9-11 Sir… that would be the World Trade Center attack… yes Sir the whole “Twin Towers” thing… yes we are sure he did it sir… No…no he didn’t eject at the last minute… well because he didn’t actually fly the planes sir….No sir, remote controls don’t… Sir, he released videos on the internet claiming credit, that’s how we know… no I don’t know how many Youtube hits he got Sir…no… ummm..Sir?…yes I like Justin Bieber’s new video too Sir… well that certainly is a lot of hits Mr. Bieber got there Sir, but…well Sir, as I was saying he’s in Pakistan now, and before we can send in a team we need…Sir, Sir… I’m talking about Bin Laden, not Mr. Bieber Sir,… No, I don’t think his tour takes him to Pakistan Sir, but…. Sir…Sir?… That’s ok Sir, I’ve got Secretary Clinton on line 2…. No don’t worry about it Sir, sorry to have bothered you… Yes, you are still on for golf sir…No don’t worry about it… my mistake Sir…no it’s not a problem Sir, like I said we have Secretary Clinton… yes Secretary Panetta is here too Sir… I’ll have your clubs brought around… No don’t worry about it… Thank you Sir.. OK.. same to you Sir….

  13. Hondo says:

    ANCCPT: Reservists not serving on active duty can generally speak out on political issues as they please. The general restrictions are (1) you can’t speak out in uniform, (2) you can’t use your official position in the reserves in your political statements, or claim to speak for your service/reserve component/DoD, and (3) you can’t violate the UCMJ prohibitions on contemptuous speech towards specified elected officials or otherwise make statements/perform acts that bring discredit on the military.

    Case in point: Sen Barry Goldwater served for years as a US Senator while an active member of the USAFR (1953-1965). He retired from the USAFR as a Major General in 1967. While serving in the USAFR, I’m reasonably certain Goldwater spoke out quite often on partisan political matters – particularly in 1952, 1958, and 1964. (smile)

  14. Bill R. says:

    Is anything that was said in the video untrue? Is anything that was said in the video even a stretch of the truth? If the answer is no to both of those questions, I say Eat S*** and Bark at the Moon Mr. Obama. How does this jugeared pretender in chief STILL have so many people fooled.

  15. SgtHUSMC says:

    Does Gen Dempsey’s disdain of the men and women who have fought for the rights of ALL Americans to freely speak their mind extend to ALL service members or just to those who oppose the current Obamination? Going by his statement, should we never have had presidents like, oh, I don’t know, say, Washington, Lincoln, Grant, Roosevelt, Eisenhower, Kennedy, Reagan, or Bush? Should we throw people like Kerry and McCain out of office? Thank God American service men and women have always been willing to serve their country beyond the battlefield. God willing, they always will!

  16. OWB says:

    This is one game that (fill in the blank with sKerry, leftists, the administration, whatever) really doesn’t want to play. They don’t seem to be smart enough to realize it, but seriously?

    Lambasting the truth didn’t work for sKerry in ’04. It still isn’t working. Most Americans, veterans certainly among that group, value truth and honor much more than political affiliation. Period.

    But, bring it on! Folks, the general folks on the streets, the ones who actually vote, are sick of the lies coming mostly, it seems, from the left. The same old tired rhetoric still doesn’t work well for them. Silly lefties.

  17. Anonymous says:

    It’s a shame when legtimiate concerns get tainted by a spokesman making public statements like just another assclown.

    It’s a willful disservice to the intent of the group.

  18. CarlS says:

    ““If someone uses the uniform, whatever uniform, for partisan politics . . .”

    Wasn’t Martin Dempsey wearing a uniform when he took his partisan postion?

  19. Veritas Omnia Vincit says:

    If some idiot who used to serve and has married twice to improve his wealth can use his service to provide a basis for his supposed authority on certain issues, the former service members at OPSEC are certainly eminently qualified to express their views using their former service as the basis for formulating an appropriate opinion for themselves.

    Free speech is a pain in the 4ss, it means the 4ss clowns at DU have the same right to offer their regular flights of fancy as do the members of OPSEC. While I think the DU’ers are out their collective dope smoking hippie brains, I whole heartedly endorse their continued right to be as f#cking stupid with their comments as they like.

    If the president and some other high ranking j3rkoffs don’t like what OPSEC has to say, tough sh1t they’ve earned the right to say it and God bless them for having the intestinal fortitude to do so knowing they would not be received well. Drive On!

  20. Common Sense says:

    I think the people in the video and involved in the super PACs for this issue have far more right to the 1st Amendment than anyone else, ESPECIALLY some good-for-nothing politicians who personally gains from the backs of others.

    There wasn’t one thing in that video that I hadn’t already heard from another media source. Not one. It is completely valid that they express their opinion and very valuable to those of us not in the military to hear it from people with intimate knowledge of the situation.

    As this has been happening over the past couple of days, I’ve been reading

    Fearless: The Undaunted Courage and Ultimate Sacrifice of Navy SEAL Team SIX Operator Adam Brown

    I’ve read lots of other accounts from Afghanistan and Iraq – Lone Survivor, American Sniper, etc. but somehow this book really got to me more than most of them do. Maybe it was the timing.

    When you read about the training and the sacrifices these guys make, then hear the Commander in Chief discount them as liars and worse, it makes your blood boil.

    These guys have been vetted in ways that Obama can’t even imagine. He’s not worthy to even kiss their pinky toes.

  21. FOMSG says:

    I think GEN Dempsey should be more concerned with the erosion of Military Service members’ trust in their senior leadership.

  22. Ex-PH2 says:

    I don’t recall ever seeing a US president be dismissive of the military, active duty or out of the service.

    This is a first.

    It’s disturbing.

    It can backfire very badly.

  23. streetsweeper says:

    And General Dempsey may kiss my skinny ass! To put it non PC another way, “Chuck you Farley”…*dickweed*

  24. Anonymous says:

    @22 They’re no longer active-duty military (which is why they can speak their mind), so going after them doesn’t count as ‘going after the military’.

  25. Tango9 says:

    Hate to cherry pick on comment… but the swift boat vets for truth were never “discredited.” No one collected that bounty they offered up if anyone could find anything that they claimed to be untrue, as that idiot AP reporter would have us believe…

    … but keep f’in that chicken, hippies.

  26. Ex-PH2 says:

    @24, I included “out of the service”. And I also said dismissive, not ‘going after’.

    The OPSEC video has been getting network attention for the past few days, which is why GEN Dempsey was asked about it, and I am mystified by the dismissive attitude that has been coming from the White House and came from him. I’ve never seen that before, but it is NOT a good thing.

    @Tango is right, they have not been discredited, but the Establishment is trying to blow off what they are saying, as if violating national security just doesn’t matter, and the president trying to take credit for something that these men did is just as bad.

  27. Poetrooper says:

    Dempsey is a political appointment due to his willingness to toe the Democrat political line. He’s a toady…no other way to describe the man. And it is sad that after all his years of service that such a potentially powerful man ends up a…


    Obama suck-up and Ray Mabus, SECNAV, made sure that a tough Marine general,James E. “Hoss” Cartwright,wasn’t made Chairman of the Joint Chiefs. The whole business was Chicago politics taken to the national level and more importantly, national strategic level.

    We have this weasel, Dempsey, precisely because he is what the Democrats needed in charge of our military, a lapdog lick spittle who would do anything to further his career as a get-along go-along general.

    The man will go to his grave disgraced by his treachery to his troops.

    Should I live so long, may I some day piss on his grave.

  28. NHSparky says:

    Funny how they piss on the SEALs, but have no problem pimping the military out for their own agenda:

    “The Obama campaign continues to promote a highly partisan attack ad that used military footage and photographs from the White House Situation Room to support sharp criticism of the president’s political opponent,” (OPSEC President Scott) Taylor said. “The use of those in uniform and the work they do for partisan political purposes is not only unhelpful, as General Dempsey said, but is dishonorable, and the campaign should immediately remove the ad for good.”