Tawdry aspects of the Petraeus affair fascinate our media elites and distract from far more important work. Some of it even landed in my lap. On Tuesday, Activision-Treyarch released their new, astoundingly successful video game, "Call of Duty: Black Ops II." Within hours of the launch, I was receiving calls, text messages, tweets and emails asking if I'm offended by my likeness appearing in the same video game with that of David Petraeus.
The short answer is, no. "Call of Duty: Black Ops II" is fictional, as are most of the characters -- even the villains. I was able to work with the producers on developing the game scenario, participate in the story and make commercial endorsements. I last interviewed General Petraeus when he was ISAF commander and I was on assignment in Afghanistan for Fox News. We talked on and off camera about real special operations and did not discuss the video game. In retrospect, I don't know him as well as I thought. But I am certain the prurient fascination with "sex and the stars" is a distraction from the vital need to get the truth about what really happened at our diplomatic mission in Libya -- and taking steps to reduce the likelihood of it happening again.
That's crucial because Obama's Arab Spring is rapidly degenerating into an explosive Islamist winter. Radical websites and propaganda organs are trumpeting U.S. weakness and disarray. Calls for martyrs to attack American military and diplomatic posts overseas have increased five-fold since Benghazi. That may not be as sexy as military-mistress dalliances, but it's a lot more important.
Not surprisingly, this line of thought does not appeal to all callers. Instead, some want to concentrate on similarities between between "Call of Duty: Black Ops II" and my new novel, "Heroes Proved." There are some. Both the novel and the game are set in the future. Both deal with the threat of global terror and realistic unforeseen threats, unexpected challenges, unwanted dangers and unpredictable outcomes. But the main characters and story line in the game and the book are unique to each. General David Petraeus is in "Call of Duty: Black Ops II." He's not in "Heroes Proved." I'm in both. Those who want to see how they differ will have to play the game and read the book.
Oliver North is the host of "War Stories" on Fox News Channel, the founder and honorary chairman of Freedom Alliance, and the author of "Heroes Proved." Join Oliver North in Israel by going to http://www.olivernorthisrael.com. To find out more about Oliver North and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com.
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Oliver North is a nationally syndicated columnist, the host of War Stories on the Fox News Channel, the author of the new novel Heroes Proved and the co-founder of Freedom Alliance, an organization that provides college scholarships to the children of U.S. military personnel killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. Join Oliver North in Israel by going to www.olivernorthisrael.com.