Saturday, April 28, 2007

For reasons that are not yet clear

* amy:
"Officer: Generals Misleading Public on Iraq
Meanwhile an active-duty Army officer has come out with a scathing critique of how top U.S. generals are handling the war in Iraq. Writing for the Armed Forces Journal, Leutenant Colonel Paul Yingling writes military leaders have under-stated the strength of the Iraqi insurgency to the American public. He writes: “For reasons that are not yet clear, America’s general officer corps underestimated the strength of the enemy, overestimated the capabilities of Iraq’s government and security forces and failed to provide Congress with an accurate assessment of security conditions in Iraq.” Yingling continues: “Our generals are not worthy of their soldiers.”"
* amy:
Ex-CIA Head Criticizes Admin on Pre-War Intel
Former CIA Director George Tenet has accused the Bush administration of blindly leading the country into war on Iraq and then using him as a scapegoat when their pre-war claims proved false. In a new book released next week, Tenet writes: “There was never a serious debate that I know of within the administration about the imminence of the Iraqi threat.” He adds there was also never any discussion of containing Iraq without a full-scale invasion. Tenet also takes issue with administration officials’ repeated citing of his infamous ‘slam dunk’ remark about evidence Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. Tenet says he was referring to the ease of making a public case for war, not the specific issue of WMDs. Tenet was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom award in December 2004, six months after he resigned in the fallout over the administration’s pre-war intelligence.

* amy:
And former Alaska Senator Mike Gravel challenged what he called the military-industrial complex.
Mike Gravel: "We have no important enemies. What we have to do is to begin to deal w/ the rest of the world as equals and we don't do that. We spend more as a nation on defence than the rest of the world put togehter. Who are we affraid of? Who are youu affraid of [Moderator and NBC News anchor Brian Williams]? I'm not. Iraq has never been a threat to us. We invaded them it is unbelievable. The military industrial complex not only controls our government lock stock and barrel, but they control our culture."
* amy:
Activists Unfurl 30-Ft. Impeachment Banners in Senate Building
And finally in Washington, fourteen people were arrested in the Senate office building Thursday for unfurling two thirty-foot banners calling for the impeachment of President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney. One banner read: “Your silence, your legacy’ while the other listed articles of impeachment.”

* digby has a terrific speech by ashleigh banfield, april 2003.

* i just saw Oz PM John Howard on Brit Hume. Yay us. He was saying something about how alqaeda watches the news and we need to be careful about 'what we say' - yay, us.

* tristero:
"What's hard is trying to understand why anyone, including the editors of the NY Times, the Washington Post, the New Yorker, the New Republic, every American television station, and so on and so on and so on, gave these fuck-ups a free pass for so long when it was patently obvious from day one that everything they believed or did was, to coin a phrase, "foolish and indefensible.""

* jane made brithume's Two Minutes of Hate "The Grapevice" - I'm proud of you, jane!

* glenn:
"By contrast, FDL is one of the most accomplished and widely respected political blogs in the country, with a daily readership of 100,000 or so highly committed Democratic activists and voters. What ought to be "controversial" is if Hillary Clinton and other candidates fail to appear in such venues to answer questions, not when they do. The day after Clinton appeared, John Kerry posted at FDL and then participated in comments as well, as have scores of the most prominent Democrats and liberal activists over the last year.

What much of this is about is a rank, transparent effort to make liberal blogs radioactive to candidates.
FDL has a readership of 100,000 highly active, mainstream Democrats. Dan Gerstein has a constituency of one neoconservative non-Democratic warmonger Senator. When the latter criticizes the former, it signifies many, many things. "

* btd @ tl:
"Iran won the war. I wonder if people understand that what the United States is fighting for in Iraq is to prop up a Shia-dominated pro-Iran, theocratic state. That we are failing at achieiving a result counter to our own national interests would be ironic if so many good people were not dying as a result of this idiotic policy."
* btw - for how long have i been promising some of the Barlow interview? will we see something soon?


Anonymous said...

Just want to add a comment from "the ground" so to speak.

I live in NC in an area heavily populated by marines from Camp LeJuene and a large number of retired military.

Yesterday I sat beside a 40'ish man who was talking to a 50'ish woman whose son was going to Iraq for the thrid time. She was clearly fed up. The man was also a reservist who had been to Iraq twice, had his tour extended both times with only a two week leave in each tour. He said it.."FUBR"...and that it wasn't winnable and that something.."has GOT to change in Washington".

This is not the first time I have heard this, I have heard it from the majority who have been in Iraq for a long time now.

Bottom line...the military command is incompetent and has lost the confidence of it soliders and the adm has lost the military... this war is over...there will be no "progress"...the soliders there now are marking time trying to stay alive till we get out.
That's all they can do.

ewastud said...

What I would like to see made "radioactive" to political candidates is association with AIPAC. Let's all of us agitate to make this so!

Kax said...

Let's all support Kucinich's Exit Strategy to replace our troops in Iraq with UN Peace Keepers.
Urge your Senators and Congrescritters to vote yes on HR 1234.

P.S. The New Yorker Magazine does not belong in a list of fuck-ups in the media. They led the way with all of Sy Herch's articles on stovepiping intelligernce, outing Abu Ghraib, etc.

«—U®Anu§—» said...

Right. I wanted to make the point the other day and never did. Pull the troops out as quickly as possible. If the Iraqis want something more from us, there's no doubt they'll speak up.

lukery said...

anon - thnx for that. i wonder when the revolting starts...

ewastud: imagine, imagine (actually, the crime syndicate would probably just start using a new front...)

steven andresen said...

This came up,

“For reasons that are not yet clear, America’s general officer corps underestimated the strength of the enemy, overestimated the capabilities of Iraq’s government and security forces and failed to provide Congress with an accurate assessment of security conditions in Iraq.” Yingling continues: “Our generals are not worthy of their soldiers.”"

Suppose this blindness about Iraq had to do with the military not knowing much about Iraq. Actually, I think this is the most likely explanation. But, isn't it pathetic to think that our military would be so ignorant about these facts about their enemy.

I suspect the ignorance of our military about Iraq has to do with having their heads up their asses.

Maybe they think that in the high tech battlefield world that we all live in it doesn't matter what the enemy does if they don't have higher tech weapons to challenge us. This is why it would be so important to smash up anyone who has weapons of mass destruction. You figure anyone else you can just step on at your liezure. Also, you figure you don't have to spend much time in opposition research.

I suspect the ignorant military brass reflects the ignorant population from which it comes. I say this, without wanting to say that people are stupid, but that people are either not encouraged to know much about the world, or there are impediments. The government has been cutting back on education for decades. I'd have thought if we wanted a strong defense against terrorism, or hunger, or a bad economic meltdown, we would have given money to Americans to go out into the world and find out about it and to do something about the problems they saw.

Since we don't send americans to find out about the world, or to bring their values to the world, no wonder we and our military are ignorant.

I suspect you don't want americans to go out into the world to find out about it because as a planner, you don't want them to know about how you are manipulating the shit out of the place and how the world's people are getting sick and tired of it. So, you don't want them to know how you've imposed Saddam Hussein on Iraq, and protected him there, and made money off him. And in Iran with the Shah, and in Saudi Arabia with the Saudi royals, and so on.

I think we also have to question whether the end result in Iraq, the murders and the destruction, is all that unexpected to the military. Isn't the United States military in Europe and South Korea and so many other places because they figure people are going to cause violent problems after the wars we have "won"? Why would anyone expect there to be peace in any place after it's been overrun and occupied by the armies of a foreign country?

We should also wonder whether this is the desired result. If the people are fighting amongst themselves in religious wars, for example, then they won't have the energy to go after the United States, or Israel.

I think the military brass have their heads up their butts, but that fact is only part of the problem.

Kax said...

Amen and then some.