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Cultural Changes at CIA
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It is being reported that recently rusticated CIA Director David Petraeus annoyed his Agency subordinates through his requiring staff to hand him bottles of water at “precise intervals” when he was jogging and also demanding fresh sliced pineapple be made “available during business trips before bedtime.” As I recall when Ronald Reagan’s Director of Central Intelligence Bill Casey visited Rome Station back in the 1980s he had only one requirement – a fresh bottle of Irish whiskey on his bedside table every night. Bushmills, I believe.

(Republished from The American Conservative by permission of author or representative)
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: CIA, David Petraeus 
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  1. tbraton says:

    “As I recall when Ronald Reagan’s Director of Central Intelligence Bill Casey visited Rome Station back in the 1980s he had only one requirement – a fresh bottle of Irish whiskey on his bedside table every night. Bushmills, I believe.”

    I also recall reading somewhere that Casey had a weakness for cashews, and the wealthy Saudis indulged his taste by providing bowls full of different cashew varieties of which most Americans are completely ignorant.

  2. kind of disturbing that a USMA grad and 4 star general could be so needy. makes you wonder if Petreaus has subordinates bring him bottled water, clean towels, etc. after his trysts.

  3. McRoss says:

    This reminds me on the one hand of Old Jack and his lemons, and on the other of Grant in his bibulous period. Both great generals, if very different men. Pineapple doesn’t seem to have the same effect.

  4. icarusr says:

    Culture of entitlement, eh …

  5. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    At least Petreaus was not asking for near lethal doses of whiskey prior to sleep. Too much is know about heavy alcohol consumption to be comfortable with that charming request, but the Petreaus need for minions is a bit small nonetheless although hardly important. What about qualifications for the job?

  6. Look out Diana Ross, we got a new Supreme!

  7. Chad says:

    in 20 years the CIA Director will want “a whole mess of weed”

  8. TomB says:

    My esteem for Bill Casey has now not just wildly gone up, but has turned into positive comradely, band of brothers’ affection. Giants did once walk the earth.

    Bottled water and pineapple….

  9. Cliff says:

    Petraeus was more of a rock star than a general, and this confirms that…

  10. chipotle says:

    Okay, this is probably a dumb question. Forgive me.

    Is the idea that Bill Casey was drinking an entire bottle of whiskey every night? Or was he having, say, 1/3rd and giving the rest to some old buddies who weren’t fussy about getting half drunk whiskey bottles (as long as it was the good stuff)?

    I’m a near teetotaler and I can’t handle scotch whiskey at all so I’m relying on others to help me out here.

  11. Chipotle – Winston Churchill reportedly drank a bottle of Louis XIII cognac (retails currently at \$2,200 a bottle) every day during the Second World War, in addition to other libations and numerous Cuban cigars. He lived to 90 plus, I believe. I am not suggesting that Bill Casey actually drank a whole bottle of whiskey every night, but it certainly is possible. Your suggestion that he might have left a half bottle or so as a tip to the staff providing the service would likely have been appreciated as CIA folks in those days were a hard drinking crowd.

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