You may recall my article on Wednesday, Hey, for the first time in my life I got on C-SPAN with a question. "That's what our soldiers sign up for."
Afterward, as I described here, the question was not without blowback.
I chanced upon that C-SPAN show the other morning and my phoned in question has, according to sources, hit a nerve with certain members of the administration. By phrasing the question the way I did ("the growing suspicion that the National Command Authority is in the hands of the domestic enemies of the Constitution"), I put COL Petkosek on the spot. The predicate to the question went unchallenged by him and he answered the question in a direct and straightforward manner. This, according to the fears of some familiar with the Army and the Pentagon, may have jeopardized his career (and he is viewed by my sources as someone who is extremely competent, conscientious and fast-tracked for stars -- at least he was before my question).Was this my intention? No. But it is a natural consequence of putting the subversive question out there in a national media venue (even one as ill-watched as C-SPAN) when Obama and his coterie are in fact domestic enemies of the Constitution. They don't like seeing their own ugly faces in the mirror. The question of what form, if any, the retaliation by the White House and their lapdogs in the E-Ring of the Pentagon will take is up for discussion and debate among my sources, with some doubting they will dare to come down on COL Petkosek (as he has accumulated many friends and mentors during his career) and others certain of it (because they don't give the traitorous dogs in control much credit for smarts). For our purposes it was still a win-win, even if it unintentionally causes COL Petkosek career difficulties. Said one, "You are wicked devilish, Vanderboegh, to think up a subversive question like that on the fly. . . The Empire does not like someone introducing doubt into the minds of people it views as its lackey stormtroopers."Okay, so that was a win, costing nothing to execute. Except, perhaps, COL Petkosek's career. Yet if he's the stand-up guy my sources say he is, I harmed a good man. Was it a win or a loss? In any case, it is not without cost to my conscience.
This intrigued some readers, who asked me for COL Petkosek's complete answer. Here is the exchange in its entirety:
MBV: Colonel, I want to congratulate you on your facility there. It's remarkable. It's obviously state of the art. My son just left the active army after three tours of Iraq and one of Afghanistan and I want to say I'm with you and with Plato, who said "Only the dead have seen the end of war." We can't predict exactly what's going to happen but I think what you're hearing in the voices of the people who have called you today is the growing suspicion that the National Command Authority is in the hands of the domestic enemies of the Constitution. My question to you is quite simple and direct: "What do you do when faced with an unconstitutional order?"
COL Petkosek: Well, Mike, we've got an obligation to support and defend the Constitution of the United States, and fortunately I've not had to face that moral dilemma and say, "Hey, what choice do I make between some order and, you know, the parameters as they're outlined by the Constitution?" And I raised my hand and said I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States of America and that's what I'm charged. And as you talked about, that's what our soldiers sign up for.Again, I'm glad to hear that you've got a son who served and you should be very proud that he made the choice and raised his hand as I did to do exactly that, support and defend the Constitution of the United States and I'm sure as he could tell you that a lot of the things that have been discussed on the program today are, uh, maybe false perceptions about, you know, why our Army's here and what we're here to do. That's why I take an opportunity here to share with you and the rest of the American people, hey, this is what our Army is here for. Nothing has changed. This is the same Army. The United States Army existed before there was a United States of America. It's the oldest institution that we have in terms of our nation and we've been doing the same thing for two hundred and some odd years. Whenever we're called, we go. So the nature of what the Army does for the American people hasn't changed and it's only become stronger.
(Actually there is at least one American institution that predates the U.S. Army by at least 150 years -- the American militia. For that matter, so does the Corps of Soiled Doves and Streetwalkers of the City of Boston.)