by Ray McGovern
September 11, 2007
That’s all I said in the unusual silence on Monday afternoon as first aid was being administered to Gen. David Petraeus’ microphone before he spoke before the House Armed Services and Foreign Affairs Committees.
It had dawned on me that when House Armed Services Committee Chairman Ike Skelton (D-Mo.) invited Gen. Petraeus to make his presentation, Skelton forgot to ask him to take the customary oath to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. I had no idea that my suggestion would be enough to get me thrown out of the hearing.
I had experienced a flashback to a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in early 2006, when Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) reminded chairman Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) that Specter had forgotten to swear in the witness, Attorney General Alberto Gonzales, and how Specter insisted that that would not be necessary.
Now that may or may not be an invidious comparison. But Petraeus and Gonzales work for the same boss, who has a rather unusual relationship with the truth. How many of his senior staff could readily be convicted, as was the hapless-and-now-commuted Scooter Libby, of perjury?
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