The hearing began this morning with Rep. Ike Skelton, chairman of the Armed Services committee, calling the meeting to order. He was greeted by shouts of “War Criminal” by a protester in the back of the room.
The protester was removed and Skelton stated that “No disturbances will be tolerated.”
While Petraeus was delivering his testimony, accusing Iran of wanting to use militia forces to create Hezbullah-like units in support of its aims in Iraq, another protester began shouting, “Thats a lie!”, and was subsequently removed.
Skelton commanded, “Would the entire group that’s back there supporting that person be removed.”
His request was apparently denied as more protests would shortly follow.
As Petraeus finished up his testimony more protesters from the anti-war group Code Pink began shouting. This time, the camera panned to the protesters to allow viewers to witness the protester being forcibly removed.
There are still some people in the crowd wearing the distinctive pink ribbons of the group.
Outside the hearing, a small group of Code Pink protesters held a large, pink sheet that said “GENERALS LIE.”
Cindy Sheehan was also arrested outside of the hearing.
Real Clear Politics reports:
House Armed Services Chairman Ike Skelton (D-MO) forgot to turn off his microphone, and after asking to have some potential protesters removed from the hearing room, Skelton turned to Republican Duncan Hunter and said, “that really pisses me off, Duncan.” He followed that by calling the protesters seeking to disturb the proceedings “those assholes.”
Skelton said that all of the protesters would be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.