Nick Turse
Brig. Gen. Bryan T. Roberts publicly warned his troops at Fort Jackson, S.C., last spring that he and the Army had “zero tolerance for sexual harassment and sexual assault.” Here’s what the Army didn’t tell the soldiers: At the time, Roberts himself was under investigation by the military over allegations that he physically assaulted one of his mistresses on multiple occasions.
the always sharp and ever dogged Craig Whitlock from his latest deep dive into military misconduct “Military brass, behaving badly: Files detail a spate of misconduct dogging armed forces” - The Washington Post
Over at FP, Shane Harris details the findings of an unreleased Justice Department report about U.S. DEA special agents in Colombia who “solicited sex from prostitutes on numerous occasions, arranged for encounters using their government-issued cell phones, and brought women back to their government-furnished apartments, putting themselves at risk for blackmail or coercion and jeopardizing national security information.”
(for the full story, see Transvestites, ‘Erotic Massages,’ and Metadata: DEA’s Colombia Scandal Deepens)

Over at FP, Shane Harris details the findings of an unreleased Justice Department report about U.S. DEA special agents in Colombia who “solicited sex from prostitutes on numerous occasions, arranged for encounters using their government-issued cell phones, and brought women back to their government-furnished apartments, putting themselves at risk for blackmail or coercion and jeopardizing national security information.”

(for the full story, see Transvestites, ‘Erotic Massages,’ and Metadata: DEA’s Colombia Scandal Deepens)

In 2004, Wal-Mart de Mexico built a supermarket within a mile of the pyramids of Teotihuacán, an important cultural landmark in Mexico.  How did they do it?  By paying a $52,000 bribe!  For the rest, check out an important and well-reported piece in yesterday’s New York Times: "How Wal-Mart Used Payoffs to Get Its Way in Mexico"

A poster general for American decline, David Petraeus will be a footnote to history, a man out for himself who simply went a bridge or a book too far. George W. and crew were the real thing: genuine mad visionaries who simply mistook their dreams and fantasies for reality.

But wasn’t it fun while it lasted? Wasn’t it a blast to occupy Washington, be treated as a demi-god, go to Pirate-themed parties in Tampa with a 28-motorcycle police escort, and direct your own biography… even if it did end as Fifty Shades of Khaki?

In his 1987 Princeton dissertation, David Petraeus wrote this on perception: “What policymakers believe to have taken place in any particular case is what matters — more than what actually occurred.” On this and other subjects, he was certainly no dope, but he was a huckster — for himself (given his particular version of self-love), and for a dream already going down in Iraq and Afghanistan. And he was just one of many promoters out there in those years pushing product (including himself): the top officials of the Bush administration, gaggles of neocons, gangs of military intellectuals, hordes of think tanks linked to serried ranks of pundits. All of them imagining Washington as a battlefield for the ages, all assuming that the struggle for “perception” was on the home front alone.
Until recently, here was the open secret of Petraeus’s life: he may not have understood Iraqis or Afghans, but no military man in generations more intuitively grasped how to flatter and charm American reporters, pundits, and politicians into praising him.
Don’t miss Andy Kroll’s new piece at MoJo, where he writes: 
"GOP Rep. Paul Ryan, the wonky Wisconsinite who has proposed privatizing Medicare and cutting other entitlement programs, was left red-faced a few weeks ago when he was spotted sharing two $350 bottles of wine at a posh French restaurant in Washington, DC. His drinking buddies: a hedge fund manager and a University of Chicago economist.”
Read it (and weep) at:  Activists Bash Paul Ryan’s $350 Pinot Splurge with Faux Wine Tasting | Mother Jones)

Don’t miss Andy Kroll’s new piece at MoJo, where he writes:

"GOP Rep. Paul Ryan, the wonky Wisconsinite who has proposed privatizing Medicare and cutting other entitlement programs, was left red-faced a few weeks ago when he was spotted sharing two $350 bottles of wine at a posh French restaurant in Washington, DC. His drinking buddies: a hedge fund manager and a University of Chicago economist.”

Read it (and weep) at:  Activists Bash Paul Ryan’s $350 Pinot Splurge with Faux Wine Tasting | Mother Jones)

Writing about the Guardian’s brilliant work on the News Corp scandal, the Columbia Journalism Review's Dean Starkman writes: “It’s a testament to investigative reporting—expensive, time-consuming, risky, stressful—at newspapers. If you think investigations aren’t under pressure at institutional news organizations, you’ve probably been caught on the news hamster wheel yourself.”
(via The News Corp. Scandal is a Triumph for Investigative Reporting : CJR)
photo credit: This image has been posted to Flickr by the copyright holder, the World Economic Forum

Writing about the Guardian’s brilliant work on the News Corp scandal, the Columbia Journalism Review's Dean Starkman writes: “It’s a testament to investigative reporting—expensive, time-consuming, risky, stressful—at newspapers. If you think investigations aren’t under pressure at institutional news organizations, you’ve probably been caught on the news hamster wheel yourself.”

(via The News Corp. Scandal is a Triumph for Investigative Reporting : CJR)

photo credit: This image has been posted to Flickr by the copyright holder, the World Economic Forum

(via Jeff Danziger Editorial Cartoon on GoComics.com)
(via Mike Luckovich Editorial Cartoon on GoComics.com)