Wednesday, November 30, 2005

New Recipe For Success: "Quick, Deadly Strikes by U.S. Warplanes"

Seymour Hersh has published a new article in which he discloses a new strategic plan being bandied about by a "high level Pentagon war planner."

The strategist says the Pentagon envisions drawing down the troop level, and filling any operational gaps left by increasing the use of combat aircraft.

Haven't these people studied the Vietnam War? This was exactly what the U.S. did when Congress, by means of the purse-strings, forced the military to remove American ground forces.

The reliance upon airpower alone didn't ensure victory for the U.S. in Indochina.

In the case of Iraq, an urbanized country, collateral damage from a stepped-up bombing campaign would likely cause seriously detrimental ramifications to the national interests of the United States. However, if the national interests of the U.S. were a vital concern to the Bush administration, we would never have gone to war in Iraq at all.

The kooks are clearly still making policy:

“We're not planning to diminish the war, Patrick Clawson, the deputy director of the Washington Institute for Near East Policy, told me. Clawson's views often mirror the thinking of the men and women around Vice-President Dick Cheney and Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. "We just want to change the mix of the forces doing the fighting--Iraqi infantry with American support and greater use of airpower. The rule now is to commit Iraqi forces into combat only in places where they are sure to win. The pace of commitment, and withdrawal, depends on their success in the battlefield."

He continued, "We want to draw down our forces, but the President is prepared to tough this one out. There is a very deep feeling on his part that the issue of Iraq was settled by the American people at the polling places in 2004. The war against the insurgency “may end up being a nasty and murderous civil war in Iraq, but we and our allies would still win," he said. "As long as the Kurds and the Shiites stay on our side, we'’re set to go. There's no sense that the world is caving in. We're in the middle of a seven-year slog in Iraq, and eighty per cent of the Iraqis are receptive to our message." One Pentagon adviser told me, “"There are always contingency plans, but why withdraw and take a chance? I don't think the President will go for it —until the insurgency is broken. “He's not going to back off. This is bigger than domestic politics."

Hersh's piece focuses in on Bush's philosophical position in the deliberations:

Current and former military and intelligence officials have told me that the President remains convinced that it is his personal mission to bring democracy to Iraq, and that he is impervious to political pressure, even from fellow Republicans. They also say that he disparages any information that conflicts with his view of how the war is proceeding.

Bush's closest advisers have long been aware of the religious nature of his policy commitments. In recent interviews, one former senior official, who served in Bush's first term, spoke extensively about the connection between the President'’s religious faith and his view of the war in Iraq.

The President's belief was fortified by the Republican sweep in the 2002 congressional elections; Bush saw the victory as a purposeful message from God that he'’s the man, the former official said. Publicly, Bush depicted his re-election as a referendum on the war; privately, he spoke of it as another manifestation of divine purpose.

Bush comes across here as the type of rational leader our nation needs in trying times:

The former senior official said that after the election he made a lengthy inspection visit to Iraq and reported his findings to Bush in the White House: I said to the President, We'’re not winning the war.’ And he asked, Are we losing? I said, ‘Not yet. The President, he said, “appeared displeased with that answer. “I tried to tell him, the former senior official said. And he couldn'’t hear it.


The President is more determined than ever to stay the course, the former defense official said. He doesn't feel any pain. Bush is a believer in the adage People may suffer and die, but the Church advances. He said that the President had become more detached, leaving more issues to Karl Rove and Vice-President Cheney. They keep him in the gray world of religious idealism, where he wants to be anyway,” the former defense official said. Bush'’s public appearances, for example, are generally scheduled in front of friendly audiences, most often at military bases. Four decades ago, President Lyndon Johnson, who was also confronted with an increasingly unpopular war, was limited to similar public forums. Johnson knew he was a prisoner in the White House, the former official said, “but Bush has no idea."

The president's management skills, Harvard MBA notwithstanding, seems here to be lacking:

Many of the military's most senior generals are deeply frustrated, but they say nothing in public, because they don'’t want to jeopardize their careers. The Administration has so terrified the generals that they know they won'’t go public,” a former defense official said.

Senator John Murtha makes an appearance in this story:

One person with whom the Pentagon's top commanders have shared their private views for decades is Representative John Murtha, of Pennsylvania, the senior Democrat on the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. The President and his key aides were enraged when, on November 17th, Murtha gave a speech in the House calling for a withdrawal of troops within six months. The speech was filled with devastating information. For example, Murtha reported that the number of attacks in Iraq has increased from a hundred and fifty a week to more than seven hundred a week in the past year. He said that an estimated fifty thousand American soldiers will suffer from what I call battle fatigue in the war, and he said that the Americans were seen as the common enemy” in Iraq. He also took issue with one of the White House'’s claims that foreign fighters were playing the major role in the insurgency. Murtha said that American soldiers haven't captured any in this latest activity —the continuing battle in western Anbar province, near the border with Syria. So this idea that they'’re coming in from outside, we still think there'’s only seven per cent.”

Murtha'’s call for a speedy American pullout only seemed to strengthen the White House'’s resolve. Administration officials “are beyond angry at him, because he is a serious threat to their policy both on substance and politically,” the former defense official said.

The proposed bombing campaign appears to be conceived as an intentional in-your-face to the entire Muslim world. Perhaps it is a last-ditch attempt to ignite a holy war. The article makes clear that the fuckwits running this country won't be satisfied until there is no desolate, starving village anywhere on earth whose residents will not feel superior to the pathetic sickos who would elect such men to power.


Post a Comment

<< Home