Complicity in America’s Decline: Rumsfeld’s Own “Fog of War”

-

rumsfeld.jpg
I think Donald Rumsfeld is substantially responsible for many of the most vexing problems facing the United States today in the Middle East, but George W. Bush and Vice President Cheney trump him on the accountability front.
However, a classified memo has been leaked to the media in which Rumsfeld personally advised the President to do the following:

1. Boost the number of trainers of Iraqi security forces and supply more equipment.
2. Decrease America’s 55 bases in Iraq to 5 by July 2007.
3. Provide security only in cities that actively cooperate with the U.S.
4. Focus reconstruction efforts on cooperative regions — get out of the uncooperative, turbulent regions.
5. Use U.S. forces to stop infiltration of borders by Syria and Iran.
6. Begin modest withdrawals of US forces to nudge the Iraqis to take more responsiblity.
7. Provide money to religious leaders to get them to be more cooperative with collaborative American-Iraqi interests
8. Get a jobs program going for Iraqi youth
9. Annouce that the U.S. is embarking on a “new approach”.
10, And understand that change is needed and that one of the less attactive options is “staying the course”.

This is another remarkable Rumsfeld memo.
Remember the Rumsfeld memo long ago that asked whether American policy was leading anywhere and whether American actions were possibly helping to generate more extremists and terrorists rather than less? Rumsfeld asked all of the right questions then — but in his vaunted position as Secretary of Defense seemed to do very little to respond constructively to the key questions he himself posed.
Rumsfeld’s latest memo anticipates some of the positions that the Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study Group will take as well as some of what Senator Carl Levin and other Members of Congress calling for troop withdrawals to begin.
I just watched “The Fog of War” the other night. It’s a brilliant, important film — and Donald Rumsfeld bears an uncanny resemblance in looks and demeanor to Robert McNamara. But clearly, Rumsfeld and his pal, Dick Cheney, and boss, George W. Bush, ignored the lessons that might have been learned from Vietnam and America.
Rumsfeld is guilty for his complicity in duping and lying to the American public about the Iraq War and for failing to take the responsibility for Guantanamo, Haditha, Abu Ghraib, and the shortage of body armor for U.S. soldiers — among many other bad decisions.
But he is the modern McNamara who was and is smart enough — as seen by this and previous leaked memos — to see the right course but did nothing substantial to move a President who was making horrible decisions in a less destructive direction.
— Steve Clemons
P.S. I’m traveling tonight and tomorrow to Dubai via Kuwait and will be at the Arab Strategy Forum and engaged in various meetings around the UAE all next week.

Comments

39 comments on “Complicity in America’s Decline: Rumsfeld’s Own “Fog of War”

  1. Linda says:

    One problem with McNamara is that several years ago when “Fog of War” was first released, he refused in interviews to take a public stand about what was happening in Iraq—and never has done so to my knowledge. He definitely did something not often done, i.e., admitted his mistakes publicly and expressed true remorse. I don’t think you will ever see that from Rummy or anyone high up in this administration–at least anybody higher up than Wilkerson.
    But McNamara’s silence about Iraq always has puzzled me. His speaking out could have done a lot of good.

    Reply

  2. pauline says:

    “War is big business and business is booming”
    http://www.newswithviews.com/Devvy/kidd225.htm

    Reply

  3. Den Valdron says:

    I dunno, I’d leave off on Morrow. His latest comments are so surreally over the top, so deluded and detached from reality, that he cannot possibly be serious.

    Reply

  4. pauline says:

    So many lives lost, so many families ruined. And for what? What has this “war on terror” accomplished that is good?
    Along with the needless bloodshed and suffering, imo, bush and his cronies definitely have love of money and power as their “battle plan”.
    Don’t ever forget that Dov Zakheim announced one day before 9/11 — one day before — that the Pentagon somehow “lost” a trillion dollars.
    http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2003/05/18/MN251738.DTL
    When have the feds ever announced bad economic or scandalous news on a Monday? Isn’t their tactic to announce the bad news on late Friday afternoons?
    How could anybody in private industry get away with this — unless you’re an Enron or Worldcom?

    Reply

  5. ET says:

    Check out The Best War Ever:
    http://tinyurl.com/w2wb3
    Only the truth will get us out.

    Reply

  6. David Noziglia says:

    A surprisingly moderate-in-tone posting from POA regarding the media and its domination by the radical Auto-Republicrat agenda. One can only hope that the Democrats realize that they do have the ability to influence the content of information that the media filters to the American public, and use that power effectively. History, as well as recent actions, bodes ill for this hope, but that’s based on reporting, and thus likely wrong.
    One comment on the calls to impeach Bush. And we want to make Dick Cheney president because? ? ? ?
    Rather, the better scenario is to impeach Cheney. The reasons are as follows:
    1) It is clear that he has had far more of an influence on the criminal policies of the Bush administration than Bush has. Bush is a vacuum when it comes to ideas. Cheney and his staff are the source of the corporate-friendly policies (other than tax cuts) that have exploded energy and other company profits (and Cheney’s stock portfolio). Cheney is also the source of the idea of the “unitary executive,” an idea he expressed way back when Nixon was being impeached. He and his probably write the “signing statemens.”
    2) From my reading of the many books on the Iraq war policy fiascos (hey, great title!!), I have come to the conclusion that Cheney’s office, not Bush’s was the source of much of the active malfeasance in the early occupation, such as the black-balling of the Future of Iraq Project planning documents and staff from the State Department, and hiring based on politics and ideology rather than competance and experience.
    3) Among the many criminal acts Cheney has been personnally involved in was the exposure of an active, undercover CIA agent, Valery Plame-Wilson. Aside from the violation of the specific law cited by the Republican stooge hired as a special prosecutor, this violation of national security can be accurately described as an act of treason. (BTW: The evidence for the use of the word “stooge” is the insistance that outing Plame was only a security violation if her status were not previously exposed. This is wrong. Security regulations clearly state that if someone asks you to comment on a security matter, and it becomes clear that information has been leaked, you MUST reply that you can’t talk about it, and you Neither Confirm Nor Deny its veracity.)
    4) Impeaching the Vice President will not be percieved as endangering the national security or interrupting the working of the administration (to the extent that’s a BAD thing), because it is actually the president’s job to run the government. Maybe the impeachment will distract Cheney and his staff so much that Bush will have to pay attention now and then. Not that such a situation will mean anything. But it will get Cheney out of the Oval Office, even as an advisor.
    5) There can then be attention paid to the appointment of a responsible Vice President who actually understands and respects the Constitution (NOT Bolton). Then, and only then, would it make sense to impeach Bush. Indeed, by then, given what has been revealed in both the Cheney investigation, and the other Congressional investigations we hope will be forthcoming, Bush’s impeachment may be a foregone conclusion.
    6) (My ideal fantasy) The final step will be that Bush, Cheney, Rummie, Wolfie, Condie, Feithie, and about a dozen others will be ordered by Congress and the federal courts to take all the money they have raised for the Bush library, plus all their personal wealth, and take it and themselves to live in Baghdad. They should have to suffer the consequences of what they have done, and to devote their lives, their wealth, and their non-existant honor to redressing the damage done. (Oh, and while there, they should be required to visit troop hospitals, take care of wounded soldiers, and prepare bodies for transportation back to the U.S. for burial. And to appologize to every soldier they see for what they did to them and our military and our country.)
    Sounds like a good beginning to me.

    Reply

  7. tucker's bow tie says:

    Heheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!
    Bolton’s TOAST

    Reply

  8. JoMoHo says:

    Robert Morrow. Illuminating. The psychological profile of individuals that espouse such drivel is interesting. The so-called “neo-con” is typically, as so nicely illustrated by Mr. Morrow’s post, a chicken shit. Usually, a back-room paternalist. Always arrogant. Rarely a do-er. Definitely a pedantic pontificator. Probably masturbates to the National Review and Jane’s Defense Review and can readily regurgitate every last detail about a T-34 tank but wouldn’t know what to do with an M-16 let alone a BB gun; certainly would be incontinent of urine and stool if one was pointed at him. So typical for Mr. Morrow to advocate “preventive” war. He, like so many other neo-cons, is a coward. All bluster and no balls. Even if we never invaded Afghanistan let alone Iraq his odds of getting killed in a car accident, the flu, cancer or a heart attack would be orders of magnitude greater than his chances of getting killed by a terrorist. Yet he quotes “staying alive” as the root of his stance. Mr. Morrow it’s going to be OK. I’m sorry your Mommy never held you as a child. Get outside a little. Travel a bit. Conference rooms and airports in foreign countries don’t count. C-SPAN and the Travel Channel aren’t experiential surrogates. Talk to non-wonks. Start sleeping with your blankey again (even if it’s the one with the F-16s on it; the Superman one is OK too) Get your cholesterol checked; get your flu shot and for heaven’s sake wear your seatbelt. Or at least see a psychiatrist. Your extreme paranoia and anti-social personality related symptoms need (re-)assessment.

    Reply

  9. Pissed Off American says:

    Oops, I was misinformed. It wasn’t seven GIs killed yesterday in Iraq. It was nine.
    I wonder, what is the drink of choice today for the Bush twins? Are they still partying in Argentina, with a contingent of Secret Service guys protecting them? I hope that the SS guys make sure the girls are practicing safe sex!
    Oh, damn, I forgot, daddy advocates abstinence.
    Nine dead GIs.
    Think the girls travel First Class?? Or by Lear?
    Nine. Count ’em.

    Reply

  10. Homer says:

    Robert Morrow: I think the neocons are spot on.
    HINT: To those who actually read, Neocon policy is having the precise opposite effect
    Just in Iraq alone, Neocon policy has handed the reins of power into the bloodstained hands of Al Sadr, Al Dawa, the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution of Iraq (sic!) who are all anti-American, Pro-Shia fundamentalism, anti-Israeli, pro-Iranian, etc.
    Al Dawa, with Neocon policy, has grown from a terrorist cell to a democratically elected power.
    a) The Iran-Iraq War: Struggle Without End, 2 April 1984
    The Shiite faction, Al Dawa (the Call), was expelled from Iraq in early 1980 by President Hussein. Drawing its support from the large Shiite population in southeastern Iraq, Al Dawa attempted to establish a fundamentalist Islamic state to replace the secular Ba’ath Socialist government of President Hussein. The present leader of Al Dawa, Hojatoleslam Mohammed Baqr Hakim, is operating from Tehran where he has directed terrorist attacks against targets throughout the Middle East. It is uncertain if Tehran is directly controlling the activities of Al Dawa abroad or if it is just giving tacit approval for Al Dawa’s activities. In either case, Iran’s support of Al Dawa is unacceptable and cessation of hostilities favorable to Iraq is now the preferred option for the White House.
    b) Can Democracy Stop Terrorism?
    F. Gregory Gause III
    From Foreign Affairs, September/October 2005
    Summary: The Bush administration contends that the push for democracy in the Muslim world will improve U.S. security. But this premise is faulty: there is no evidence that democracy reduces terrorism. Indeed, a democratic Middle East would probably result in Islamist governments unwilling to cooperate with Washington.
    c) The New Middle East
    Richard N. Haass
    From Foreign Affairs, November/December 2006
    Summary: The age of U.S. dominance in the Middle East has ended and a new era in the modern history of the region has begun. It will be shaped by new actors and new forces competing for influence, and to master it, Washington will have to rely more on diplomacy than on military might.

    Reply

  11. ... says:

    the iraqi people have been welcoming the americans with open arms all this time, just as the neocons said… those neocons sure are bright, and lets not forget the brilliance emanating from morrows post at top!

    Reply

  12. p.lukasiak says:

    ” An astonishing 44 percent of Americans do not want President Bush impeached (Newsweek), 36 percent approve of the job he’s doing ”
    what is astonishing is that only 8% of the people who don’t approve of Bush would have a problem with him being impeached.
    The fact that 56% of Americans either support, or don’t object to, impeaching Bush is a demonstration of the utter contempt in which he is held. Impeachment is a very messy and complicated business — and pretty much brings the government to a halt. The fact that so many people think that this country requires new leadership DESPITE the problems that an impeachment would cause is amazing….

    Reply

  13. steve duncan says:

    I’ve yet to hear or read a persuasive argument Bush, Cheney and a few others in this administration shouldn’t be hanged. Many thousands have died, been maimed or permanently displaced from their native lands as a result of Bushco’s illegal actions. Why, exactly, shouldn’t gallows be erected?

    Reply

  14. Pissed Off American says:

    BTW, Steve, if you read this, I am curious why the Huffington Post doesn’t have you on their blog list. Once in a while they post your commentaries, so it seems odd to me that they don’t list your blog. You might consider contacting them, and asking why.

    Reply

  15. Pissed Off American says:

    Hearings on Bush Crimes Will Unite Nation
    by David Swanson
    An astonishing 44 percent of Americans do not want President Bush impeached (Newsweek), 36 percent approve of the job he’s doing (AP-Ipsos), 33 percent support the Iraq War (CNN). What, you may ask, is the matter with these people? Well, primarily this: they get their news by watching television and occasionally glancing at a magazine or newspaper. They don’t know the things you know if you listen to progressive radio or search out news on the internet or read the ends of articles that begin on page 18.
    What could change their minds? Well, picture this. Close your eyes and imagine it, and I think you will find it truly beautiful: for months the celebrity stories and corporate video news releases and pseudo-journalistic sycophants who saturate American living rooms with the stench of apathy and satisfaction will be displaced. In their stead will be an endless dramatic parade of the overwhelming evidence of crimes and abuses of power committed by Bush, Cheney, and their immediate subordinates. Picture heated interrogations and recitation of evidence all morning, followed by endless commentary and chatter all afternoon. For months. Picture every man, woman, and child in America knowing in intimate detail the Downing Street Memos, the purpose of Cheney’s energy meetings, the unconstitutionality of signing statements, and the history of habeas corpus from 1215 to 2006. OK, maybe not the whole history of habeas corpus, but what it is and who took it away.
    What you’re picturing is a shift of political power that will make the recent election look like a warm-up. What you’re picturing is the key to passing legislation that will not be vetoed or signing statemented. What you are picturing is impeachment by Spring. And what can make it happen are Congressional “investigations.”
    I put “investigations” in quotation marks because the primary purpose of these “investigations” will be to communicate what is already public knowledge to the third of the public that’s never heard of it. Much more may be uncovered, but no more is needed to completely remake American politics if people are only informed of it.
    The Democrats, and any Republicans who want to stay in Congress, should “investigate” the illegal spying programs – criminal creations to which Bush has already confessed, but also the myriad other crimes for which he has not as proudly taken credit.
    Imagine the public learning about the al Jazeera memo in which Bush advocated bombing a television station, and the White House memo in which Bush proposed painting planes with UN colors and flying them low over Iraq in hopes of getting them shot at and helping to start the war that he was publicly claiming he wanted to avoid. Think about that for a minute. Everyone’s television will show them what went on at that meeting, and then what Bush and Blair said at the press conference that followed. Then members of the media will interview the reporters who were so laughably lied to that day about their feelings of being used. Then other members of the media comment on that commentary. And so forth. Just as if an attractive white girl had been lost on a beach.
    Imagine the American public hearing from the authors and participants in the various Downing Street memos and meetings. Imagine this: What if everyone, even the guy who bags your groceries and the woman who delivers your mail, even your father in law, knew what was in the memo from early 2002 that let Bush know there was almost no chance Iraq had tried to buy uranium from Niger? What if Doug Feith’s and Richard Perle’s careers were as well known as Oprah’s, and the Project for a New American Century was a household word? What if the whole collection of evidence that the war was based on lies was reviewed in televised hearings? What if Yoo Memos were the raw material for late night talk show jokes?
    And what if there were hearings on the permanent U.S. military bases being built in Iraq? What if the companies building them, the Iraqis living near them, and the officials approving them were questioned? Would Americans be pleased to learn of such an enormous expense made without Congressional approval or media acknowledgment? We – you and I – know that the United States has been building permanent bases in Iraq. But what if everyone knew about it in excruciating detail and it was the topic of endless chatter on their TVs?
    Rep. John Dingell has already committed to investigating war profiteering and Cheney’s energy task force. He should be encouraged in that, as should the many other incoming committee chair people who will do the needed “investigations.” And we should encourage Nancy Pelosi to name Rush Holt chair of the Intelligence Committee, because he can be expected to do investigations that we need.
    Henry Waxman, Dennis Kucinich, Diane Watson, Jerrold Nadler, John Conyers, Charles Rangel, Bennie Thompson, Bob Filner, William Delahunt, Marty Meehan: they’re all chairing committees that can bring Bush and Cheney down and restore the rule of law in this nation if they only choose to do so. The same is true in the Senate for John Rockefeller, Jeff Bingaman, Joseph Biden, Patrick Leahy, Daniel Akaka, and Carl Levin – who has already pledged to “investigate” extraordinary renditions. Imagine if Americans knew what extraordinary renditions were! Imagine if videos like this one put out this week by the ACLU were shown on every news show on network and cable.
    What can make that happen? Congressional “investigations.” Thus far the corporate media is still treating the Democrats as the meaningless minority party. But don’t imagine for a minute that the media will not show Republican leaders testifying under oath in hearings on the Hill. The ratings will be too high to resist. And that third of the country that disagrees with us will be quickly brought around. Bush will finally become the uniter he has always said he is.
    _______
    http://www.davidswanson.org

    Reply

  16. Pissed Off American says:

    7 dead GIs today. Rummie’s chickenshit memo ain’t gonna resurrect them.

    Reply

  17. p.lukasiak says:

    Steve, why the hell are you front paging this extremely obvious effort on Rumsfeld’s behalf to change the public perception of him?
    I’d prefer that you discuss Madonna’s latest makeover — at least she doesn’t pretend that she was never “The Material Girl”, a Disco Diva, “Dita the Dominatrix”, or any of her various other incarnations. At least she doesn’t stoop to the level of “leaking classified memos” to get attention.
    Let me guess….Rummy has been invited to speak at one of your symposia once he’s out of a job, right?

    Reply

  18. Homer says:

    Mister Death Squad Goes to Washington
    by Ahmed Amr
    [snip]
    Al Hakim’s resume is truly impressive. He’s an Ayatollah and a son of an Ayatollah. He speaks fluent Farsi – having spent half his entire life living in exile as an honored guest of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards. As a dedicated theocrat – he allied his sectarian legions of Iraqi exiles with the Iranian army in the Iran-Iraq war. It’s safe to assume that he puts his faith based political doctrines above his country – a trait he shares with his host.
    To get a measure of the man, you need to see past Hakim’s wardrobe. This guy is more than a religious missionary. He’s certainly no ordinary politician. You can’t even consider him a military man – although he was the leader of the Badr Brigades – the military wing of the Supreme Council of the Islamic Revolution in Iraq – SCIRI. Still, he’s so much more than that. The source of his political clout is his control over the Shiite death squads that have infiltrated the American-trained security forces.
    And there’s more to recommend this man for the task of getting “the job done.” The death squads under Al Hakim’s command aren’t your run of the mill assassins. They usually leave their signature on their victims before grinding them up. Al Hakim’s dedicated cadres like to drill holes in other people’s skulls before dumping the mutilated cadavers on Baghdad’s streets as a warning to any real or potential adversaries.

    Reply

  19. NeilS says:

    The decision making process in the executive branch is broken. There is no vetting of ideas. I hold Rumsfeld and Cheney responsible.
    It is not that I don’t blame Bush. Its just that they had the experience and knowledge to know better.

    Reply

  20. Hyperion says:

    i found Juan Cole’s analysis of this memo insightful.
    http://www.juancole.com/

    Reply

  21. larry birnbaum says:

    McNamara was a whole lot smarter than Rumsfeld — no books will be written labelling this gang “the best and the brightest” — and his errors I think were different. McNamara was highly analytical, data driven to a fault. Rumsfeld, while positively an intellectual in the context of this administration, doesn’t seem to have the same focus or grasp of facts. McNamara got much worse advice from his generals — Westmoreland’s “strategy” was to pursue a war of attrition, which is to say, to use GIs as cannon fodder — while Rumsfeld I think the record will ultimately show got good advice but ignored it. And in the end, McNamara seems to have been capable of grasping the moral implications of our actions in Viet Nam, and of a genuine remorese. I can’t imagine Rumsfeld will ever be capable of reaching that level of understanding.
    That said they and the wars they directed are similar in their reflection of the terrible hubris that afflicted America after WW II and then again after the end of the Cold War. (And no, I’m not forgetting September 11.)

    Reply

  22. John says:

    I agree with some of the previous posts. Rummie’s memo is all about legacy. It’s just more spin. It had to be leaked to the media to make it look genuine. If the message had been delivered directly, Rumsfeld’s devious motives would have been transparent. Let’s just hope that Rumsfeld isn’t allowed to disappear into oblivion. Let’s hope the Democrats in Congress interrogate him extensively and repeatedly, just to make sure that his real legacy never gets obfuscated.

    Reply

  23. LJ says:

    Steve: I would commend the Mark Danner article in the NY Review of Books:Iraq: The War of the Imagination.
    He suggests that the obsession over Rumsfeld is misplaced and makes the case that indeed the President and Cheney carry the blame for the current catastrophe. Key grafs:
    “So there would be no President Chalabi. Unfortunately, the President, who thought of himself, Woodward says, “as the calcium in the backbone” of the US government, having banned Chalabi’s ascension, neither offered an alternative plan nor forced the government he led to agree on one. Nor did Secretary Rumsfeld, who knew only that he wanted a quick victory and a quick departure.”
    “Woodward tends to blame “the broken policy process” on the relative strength of personalities gathered around the cabinet table: the power and ruthlessness of Rumsfeld, the legendary “bureaucratic infighter”; the weakness of Rice, the very function and purpose of whose job, to let the President both benefit from and control the bureaucracy, was in effect eviscerated. Suskind, more convincingly, argues that Bush and Cheney constructed precisely the government they wanted: centralized, highly secretive, its clean, direct lines of decision unencumbered by information or consultation. “There was never any policy process to break, by Condi or anyone else,” Richard Armitage, the former deputy secretary of state, remarks to Suskind. “There was never one from the start. Bush didn’t want one, for whatever reason.”
    I would appreciate your thoughts.
    Link: http://www.nybooks.com/articles/19720

    Reply

  24. Frank says:

    Rumsfeld has given new meaning to the term “shock and awe” in the way he leaves the Bush administration. These words no doubt, will be a metaphorical bonanza for future historians when characterizing the most misguided public servant this nation ever was cursed with. To leave an “about face” memo, seen as a legacy life raft thrown by him on the turbulent sea of misinformation (lies) which he so calculatingly stirred, is to lose whatever modicum of respect one would have for a person who was so tragically wrong in assessing what “is” in Iraq.
    With “mission accomplished” Bush, our “shock and awe” defense secretary will forever be remembered with contempt.

    Reply

  25. Pissed Off American says:

    How many were killed in the WTC crime on 9/11/01???? Hmmm, seems to me the number of American service people killed in Iraq is rapidly nearing the same amount. So, if you factor in the American civilians killed in Iraq, than Bush, with his own criminal actions, has killed more Americans than Bin Laden has. Far more. Factor in Afghanistan, and Bush makes Bin Laden look like a third rate thug. How much money did the attack on WTC cost us??? How much has Bush spent in Iraq? How much world support did we have on 9/12/01??? How much do we have now???
    Bush has, irrefutably, killed more Americans, and done more damage to America, than Bin Laden did. And his actions have been no less criminal.
    When will we wake up, and realize that the “terrists” reside in our own White House?

    Reply

  26. liz says:

    Rumsfeld is trying to save his own legacy of longest serving defense secretary and now “” smartest”. I have never liked this character and never trusted him. If I had been running this war ( even without the benefit of experience) I would have recognized the stuck point and done something , anything. Rumsfeld is more guilty because he did absolutely nothing. He went to war with the army he had but planned for war with the army I guess he wanted. No soldier should have to salute this man…… or Cheney come to think of it or even well, the decider.

    Reply

  27. Den Valdron says:

    My god, this is trite and puerile stuff when you sit down and take a look at it, isn’t it. And Dangerously stupid.
    1. Boost the number of trainers of Iraqi security forces and supply more equipment.
    Sort of a no brainer there, isn’t it? Given the colossal failure of the training venture so far? And the fact that standing the Iraqi’s up is the only thing close to a plan?
    2. Decrease America’s 55 bases in Iraq to 5 by July 2007.
    Wha? Which will do what? How do you patrol or control or occupy the country from five bases? Aren’t you pretty much surrendering the countryside outside of a days drive from those five bases? They’d be too far apart to even support each other. This is effectively a withdrawal without actually leaving. A retreat into a series of siege positions.
    Good luck with that. What happens to those five bases? They’re surrounded by the enemy, cut off from supplies, and slowly starved out.
    This only makes sense if Rumsfeld assumes that the country will be peaceful by July 2007 and that the Iraqi forces will be able to provide adequate security. Unfortunately, except for item 1, there’s no real plan or suggestion as to how to get this together.
    3. Provide security only in cities that actively cooperate with the U.S.
    Which would be… nowhere? So just hand over all the other cities to the insurgency, or to whoever wants to run them?
    Does Rumsfeld fail to realize that the US is failing to provide security, or effective security in *any* city currently? That roughly 3000 Iraqi’s are being killed every month, minimum?
    So his brainstorm is that he’s only going to occupy cities where he’s welcome? That he’ll only provide security to places that … don’t need it?
    Idiot.
    4. Focus reconstruction efforts on cooperative regions — get out of the uncooperative, turbulent regions.
    More of the ‘run away run away’ approach to conquest and imperialism. Again, Rumsfeld assumes that whole areas of the country can simply be abandoned to the insurgency and that the Iraqi resistance will simply respect whatever dotted lines he draws.
    I love this ‘focus efforts on reconstruction’, given the epic disaster of the last four years of reconstruction. All the money set aside has been used up. So what is Rumsfeld going to use for additional reconstruction projects? Food stamps?
    Idiot.
    5. Use U.S. forces to stop infiltration of borders by Syria and Iran.
    Uh huh. And this will be done from the five permanent bases in the interior of the Country? They’ll just commute to the border now, will they? Just, oh I dunno, toddle over?
    Yet, the statistics suggest that less than 6% of the resistance is constituted by foreigners. Al Quaeda is only a fraction of that. So what practical effect is this supposed to have? It does nothing to address the domestic issues of Shiite unrest and Sunni insurgency or Kurdish ethnic cleansing. It simply perpetuates an exploded meme that Iraq’s problems come from outside.
    Delusional and stupid.
    Idiot.
    6. Begin modest withdrawals of US forces to nudge the Iraqis to take more responsiblity.
    Because, you know, its all the Iraqi’s fault.
    Idiot.
    7. Provide money to religious leaders to get them to be more cooperative with collaborative American-Iraqi interests
    You figure you can bribe an Ayatollah?
    Idiot.
    8. Get a jobs program going for Iraqi youth
    Jesus H. Christ!!!!
    9. Annouce that the U.S. is embarking on a “new approach”.
    Cosmetics and nothing else. This has no tangible effect, its just spin.
    10, And understand that change is needed and that one of the less attactive options is “staying the course”.
    And….
    Jesus H. Christ on a crutch, what a senile moron. This is pathetic. The man was hopelessly out of his depth, out of touch, out of ideas, out of his mind, unable to distinguish his own fantasies, from public relations, to military strategy.
    Could somebody get a war crimes trial going for this guy?
    Seriously.

    Reply

  28. Chris says:

    Steve,
    Laurie and I are currently in Oman. We were in Dubai last week. It would have been fun if our trips had synced up. Let’s chat back in DC.
    Chris

    Reply

  29. Edward Nashton says:

    Perhaps the most disappointing error repeated in this war was the belief that was an American in each and every Iraqi.
    What a shame. We need to make these neocons pay for the damage that they have once again inflicted upon this country.

    Reply

  30. Den Valdron says:

    ROTFL! I get it now. Robert Morrow is a satirical right winger, taking the most obviously ridiculous positions for comic effect. His problem is that real right wingers are almost as ridiculous as he is. It’s hard to be a subtle satirist when your target is raging lunatics.

    Reply

  31. Pissed Off American says:

    I notice, upon perusing the list of speakers, none are from Iraq or Iran.
    http://www.asf2006.ae/web/redirect.php?scriptname=about

    Reply

  32. Pissed Off American says:

    “There is no such thing as a Maginot line in this age of nuclear weapons. And the Maginot line did not work anyway. So we have to wage preventive war. Call it imperialistic, call it the world’s policeman … I call it staying alive.”
    Posted by Robert Morrow
    Hey Morrow, did you call in?
    http://tinyurl.com/y97j3h
    “The neocons are spot on”, in their GWOT, eh??
    Yeah, its worked real well in Iraq, hasn’t it?

    Reply

  33. Pissed Off American says:

    ROFLMAO!!!!!!!!!! Gosh, Rummie sent an accidentally “leaked” memo that serves to say “Gee, golly, if only you’d heeded my advice”.
    What now, Steve is going to convince us that Rummie was fired just a touch too soon??? Well, in Rummie’s own words, “Stuff happens”.
    These lying conniving murderous bastards are responsible for the deaths of HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of human beings. And those deaths were premised on GOD DAMNED LIES. NONE of these bastards are morally redeemable. NONE. ZIP.
    This fucking mess in Iraq was not launched by good intentions, moral mandates, security considerations, or altruistic designs for Iraqi society. It was launched with deception, greed for power, and the perverted egos of deranged megalomaniacs, and Rumsfeld is right up there at the head of the list. Flush that memo down the toilet, because about all it is good for is what all toilet paper is used for.
    Like I said in an earlier thread, these bastards, from Bush on down, have the blood of HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS on their hands, and even a belated “leaked” memo won’t wash it off.
    Next thing we know, the slimey Napoleanic snake will have a “leaked” excuse for how long it took for the GIs to get up-armored Humvees and body armor.
    Throw ALL these monsters in prison. Every dead Iraqi, and every dead American, is a DIRECT RESULT of their malfeasance, their dishonesty, their lust for power, and their total inability to hold THEMSELVES accountable for the WORST Presidential Administratioon in the history of the United States.

    Reply

  34. sdemetri says:

    Interesting historical background on the close relation between Rumsfeld and Cheney, and how integral Rumsfeld was in what was so wrong about the lead in to the invasion.
    From Frontline:
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/darkside/view/

    Reply

  35. Nonplussed says:

    Having also recently seen “Fog of War” for the first time, I totally agree on its uncanniness.
    You mention the lessons of Vietnam being ignored. It seems to me they were treated almost with hostility — as if the neocons thought “let’s give occupation another shot.”
    nonplussed2.blogspot.com

    Reply

  36. profmarcus says:

    don… dear, dear don… don’t tell me that stuff hasn’t been percolating in your fevered brain for a long time… and don’t tell me either that you were just being a loyal member of the team by not speaking out sooner… there’s a special place in hell for people like you… and i’m sure you, robert mcnamara, and henry kissinger will have a grand old time jawing about the good old days while you’re all stacking blistering hot rocks into neat piles…
    http://takeitpersonally.blogspot.com/

    Reply

  37. ckrantz says:

    I suspect rummy was the smartest guy in the Bush cabinet. Arrogant but smart. The rest unfortunately is both stupid and arrogant. Not a good combination.

    Reply

  38. Robert Morrow says:

    I think Rummy is the best public servant in the USA in the past 20 years. He’s sharp as a tack. I think invading Iraq was definitely the right move. And it might be time to take on Iran and Syria, too. If we don’t, we might very well be looking at a LOT more dead Americans 5, 10 and 20 years from now. I think the neocons are spot on.
    There is no such thing as a Maginot line in this age of nuclear weapons. And the Maginot line did not work anyway. So we have to wage preventive war. Call it imperialistic, call it the world’s policeman … I call it staying alive.

    Reply

Add your comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *