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April 14, 2006

Comments

Semanticleo

"Rumsfeld had neutered Shinseki by announcing his replacement"

So all the President's generals are just
'disgruntled former employees'?

WH spin at it's Merry-Go-Roundest

kim

These generals are like Clarke, or Felt.
=========================

kim

Well, S, not necessarily, but one wonders why Rumsfeld is always such a convenient whipping boy?
==============================

MayBee

I don't doubt that there are a variety of resons. I heard two of them mention Shinseki in interviews.
Zinni's turn as envoy in Israel/Palestine was fairly disastrous in 2001. His plane landed at about the same moment violence escalated. He left, went back, left...all in all an open-ended mission lasted 15 months. I don't blame him, but talk about castrating.

He's also in the No War For Israel Club.

Ed

Spine stiffening from Powerline? I'll go along with John Cole's caveat but Powerline is just partisan hacks taking talking point orders from the RNC. If they've ever had an independent thought, let me know.

boris

If they've ever had an independent thought, let me know

self parody alert !

vnjagvet

There are always "schools of thought" in any large institution. Clearly the retired generals who are now getting the pub were of a different school of thought than the one being implemented by the current administration.

That is doubly hard on those who might have been committed to the school of thought favored in a previous administration.

Some might call it politics.

Nonetheless all of the vocal critics are, of course, retired. In some previous wars, vocal critics within the general corps were still on active duty.

Recall the names George McLellan who had major heartburn with his Secretary of War, Stanton and his President Lincoln, and Douglas Mac Arthur, who thought Truman was a political hack and didn't keep that thought to himself, for example.

This is relatively small potatoes in history's perspective.

Beto Ochoa

So much water off a ducks back.

davod

Ed and Boris: The truth hurts. These guys must all be getting their marching orders from the DNC. Just at look at how they all use the same punch line words. It is a pity they couldn't coordinate themselves a little better when they were in the military.

Raoul Bloodworth

Franks, in his book, states that the decision to use as small a force as possible was driven by the fear that Saddam would use chemical weapons to defend Baghdad. If he used 500K troops and half were "neutralized" that would leave US forces severely decimated.

Unsaid, but logic suggests, that by using 150K troops if half were "neutralized" the US would have the incentive to use unconventional weapons... and turn Baghdad into a glass parking lot.

I don't know why this isn't being discussed.

Beto Ochoa

davod,
I'm curious who their phone LUDs would show has been talking with them.

Sue

Sure takes a brave general to speak up after the fact. I, myself, prefer those who are vocal at a time when it takes guts to be vocal. Piling on after the tackle is jr. high football. And frowned on by those in the stands who are only interested in the tackle itself, not the showboating afterwards.

davod

If they get Bush to fire Rumsfeld it will be used as a critique of the Bush policy.

Davod

Beto:

You just want to get the subject back to the NSA.

Chuckg

I never understood how Shinseki could supposedly be 'neutered' by having his replacement announced 15 months before the fact, when I understand that they are normally appointed to a four-year term in office. Of which General Shalikashvili served his full four years.

The day the man was leaving was known virtually from the day he arrived, and yet it 'neuters' him to announce that 15 months before the fact? I don't get it.

Cecil Turner

Seems to me the best take is from Victor Davis Hanson (and it's hard to pick a best part, but here's the gist):

Apart from the ethical questions involved in promoting a book or showcasing a media appearance during a time of war by offering an "inside" view unknown to others of the supposedly culpable administration of the military, what is striking is the empty nature of these controversies rehashed ad nauseam.
Further, there's a selection bias when citing officers who complain to the press, highlighted in the Times article:
"If I publicly disagree with my civilian leadership, I think I've got to resign. My advice should be private." --LTG John Vines
The hard fact is, a serving officer only has two options when presented with leadership he finds personally distasteful: 1) resign; or 2) shut up and soldier. And just as Shinseki's opinion of operational issues he has no say in should be taken with a grain of salt, so too should the opinion of those whose career decisions override their duty. (Not that that applies to all, or even entirely to any, of the officers cited.)

Chuckg

Whoops. Typed "Shalikashvili" up there at the last, not "Shinseki". Whadda brain fart.

OTOH, Army Chief of Staff also serves 4-year terms normally (like Chairman of JCS), and Shinseki served his 4 years in that spot, too, so...

Semanticleo

Just wonderin'.

What would Mick Collins think of all this?

Lew Clark

Just because I spent my entire adult life working for DoD doesn't mean I'm right, but it does give me some cred.
I'm not shocked that some generals are unhappy with the SecDef. I'd be more concerned if all the generals totally agreed with the SecDef. Because that would mean he wasn't in charge but was just a figurehead with the Pentagon running the show.
I have tremendous respect for our military and the job they do. But there is a reason we have a defense structure with a professional military effecting the decisions of an elected civilian leadership (or in the case of SecDef, appointed by elected officials). That is to assure that the people have the last word.
I never heard one general say, about any Secretary of Defense "That guy, now he really knows his stuff, I'd follow him into battle anywhere." But lets put it in perspective. In any organization the "professionals" always think the managers don't know diddly. Because the professionals are only looking at their narrow specialty, where the managers are looking at the big picture. Generals never ask for less troops, they always ask for more troops. The generals never ask for smaller, less expensive weapons, they always ask for bigger weapons with bigger bangs.
I don't fault the generals for being generals. No more than I fault the IT guys in a company wanting to make the company the cutting edge in automation. But it is the job of the President and his advisors to look at the big picture and balance priorities. And no "specialist" is going to be totally pleased with that.
Few active generals slam the administration. Bad career move. All retired generals voice the opinion that "We could have won that war in three days, if they had only listened to me."
The difference, like with the voices of dissent in the intelligence community (that have always been there), is that the opposition to this administration is looking for any dissent to weaken and defeat this president. And the MSM still has a big pulpit. When there is a president popular with the MSM, who shares their leftist philosophy, as with Clinton, then voices of dissent are portrayed as detractors that don't understand the president's great vision. When the president is unpopular with the MSM, the same dissent is portrayed as "See, even his own people disagree with him and agree with us."
There is nothing new with the generals not being totally on board with their “bosses“. Starting with "You want to leave George in charge after Valley Forge? Are you crazy?" But you do have, right now, political opposition that will do anything to regain power and don't mind destroying the nation in the process, if they get to be in charge of what's left.

Tano

Raoul asks why we don't consider Frank's point that using 500,000 troops would have not been smart, because of the fear of Saddam using WMDs.
It seems to me though, that nobody has had much criticism of the troop levels, or how they were used, in the march to Baghdad. The use for the extra 350K troops would have been to bring up the rear and to secure the territory that had been taken, not be added front line troops. They could have been sitting in Kuwait till the day the statue fell, then moved in to secure the nation.

Bob in Pacifica

Pass the pipe, that shit is great! Everything looks so great in here!

Bob in Pacifica

Beto: See this?

http://www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercurynews/news/breaking_news/14336462.htm

Geek, Esq.

Those Generals who are complaining about Rumsfeld's decisions regarding Iraq are fools who are getting fed misinformation by the MSM media.

/Hinderaker

Seriously, what this is about is Rumsfeld letting his "big idea" of a smaller, more technologically advanced army override the demands of the mission in Iraq.

To be more precise, it didn't occur to this Strangelovian weirdo that the Iraqi army would just dissipate, leaving behind chaos and insurgency. You'd think he would have read a few military history books or something--and you'd be wrong.

PeterUK

Since Franks has stated that he,"Got what he asked for" in terms on men and materiel and he was the actual general in charge,we are presumeably going to get a swarm of Unterpants fuhrers from the left explaining exactly how they would have done it.

owl

Just sounds like Kristol/McCain redux....

windansea

surfs up....they always come in waves

whatsamatter troglodytes? did Fitz's correction spoil your fun??

let's get Rummy!!

PeterUK

Geek,Just hoe suited is an armoured division to fighting an "insurgency" war.
What you have now is an army designed to fight the Soviets on the plaines of central Europe.
Not to root out those who hide amongst a civilian population.

boris

Rumsfeld is great. The anger is because he's so effective.

If gore had been elected in 2000 and the current situation were about the same ...

  • MSM would be saying ... "Iraq = Major Success";
  • The Wilson's would never have been heard of;
  • The NSA program would remain unleaked.

So the thing is a lot of what is "claimed" is from the "Pass the pipe, that shit is great!" school of analysis. Very skeptical of the "more troops would have been better" argument. History will validate Rumsfeld, not the pipe smoking detractors.

PeterUK

Boris,
They alll belong to the school of retrospective thinking,they would have done this they would have done that,in essence though,they have never done anything.
What is fascinating is these are the same creatures who opposed and invasion of Iraq,why therefore do they now want to have opposed even more troops.
"Ya shouldn't have done it and ya shouldn't have done it with a bigger army", "We wuz right,we wuz right!"

Geek, Esq.

Rumsfeld is great. The anger is because he's so effective.

Yes, everyone is pissed off because Iraq is going so well.
Geek,Just hoe suited is an armoured division to fighting an "insurgency" war.
What you have now is an army designed to fight the Soviets on the plaines of central Europe.
Not to root out those who hide amongst a civilian population.

One needs manpower to secure a country and establish some sort of order. Rumsfeld had a giant blind spot when it came to the possibility of an insurgency. How this is possible, given the experience of the USSR in Afghanistan, the US in Vietnam, the French in Vietnam, the French in Algeria, and even the French in Russia is beyond me.

If it wasn't possible to preserve order in Iraq with the manpower available, then we really shouldn't have invaded in the first place. Simple as that.


Cecil Turner

Seriously, what this is about is Rumsfeld letting his "big idea" of a smaller, more technologically advanced army override the demands of the mission in Iraq . . .

This is a fundamental misunderstanding of the RMA. The whole point of lighter forces is to enhance deployability: all the tanks in the world don't do you any good if you can't get them to the battle zone; or if you can't support them logistically once they arrive. And the real rap on Rumsfeld in this area is that he hasn't moved fast enough.

You'd think he would have read a few military history books or something--and you'd be wrong.

Oh please. Rumsfeld has significant military experience as a former Naval Aviator and a former SecDef. He's one of the most qualified guys to hold the job. Statements like this are so obviously political (and wrong) that it discredits the whole argument.

If it wasn't possible to preserve order in Iraq with the manpower available, then we really shouldn't have invaded in the first place. Simple as that.

As usual, it becomes apparent the argument isn't really with conduct of the war at all, but the go-to-war decision. Unfortunately for proponents, that also demonstrates the current chorus of criticism is fundamentally dishonest.

PeterUK

"One needs manpower to secure a country and establish some sort of order. Rumsfeld had a giant blind spot when it came to the possibility of an insurgency. How this is possible, given the experience of the USSR in Afghanistan, the US in Vietnam, the French in Vietnam, the French in Algeria, and even the French in Russia is beyond me."

How do you know Geek? You see you contradict yourself with your example,there was the manpower in these cases,it resulted in huge casualties.So perhaps not following such precedents was a good idea.

PeterUK

"If it wasn't possible to preserve order in Iraq with the manpower available, then we really shouldn't have invaded in the first place. Simple as that."

So Geek,if sufficient troops had been made available you would have supported the invasion of Iraq?

Sue

Seems to me Rumsfeld accomplished in Afghanistan in short order that which the Soviets failed to do in a decade. Maybe Rumsfeld did read some history books.

boris

Good point Sue.

PeterUK

No Sue,Afghanistan was a failure,you didn't lose.To make a leftoid really happy,there simply have to be helicopters lifting off the embassy roof.You must understand,"War is wrong,War never solves anything" "International law,UN,"I'd like to teach the world to sing" buzz,drone"

Lew Clark

We did not have the manpower to maintain order in Western Europe, we should never have launched the D-Day invasion! We did not have the remaining sea power to go up against the Japanese navy after Pearl Harbor. We should never have taken our "leftovers" into battle against a navy that totally controlled the Pacific! And who's stupid idea was it to confront the British Empire with the most powerful army in the world at that time with a bunch of farmers with squirrel guns!
If Geek had only been in charge for the entire history of this nation, we'd be soooooooooooooooooooo much better off!

Geek, Esq.

As usual, it becomes apparent the argument isn't really with conduct of the war at all, but the go-to-war decision. Unfortunately for proponents, that also demonstrates the current chorus of criticism is fundamentally dishonest.

It's an either or:

Either:

a) It was possible to stabilize Iraq after conquering it, and they just failed at that aspect of the mission; or

b) it wasn't possible no matter what they did.

A resounding chorus of criticism is warranted regardless of which holds.

And I really don't care what Donald Rumsfeld's qualifications are--his judgment and decisions have been abhorrent.

And, yes, Afghanistan is more stable than it was when it was in a state of complete anarchy. However, note that the criticism is regarding the handling of Iraq, not Afghanistan.

Beto Ochoa

Isn't this crap exactly what Sen. Reid planned to have happen during Easter Break?
Here is the article from The Washington Times March 18th 2006,
"Senate Democrats have mapped a political battle plan for the March congressional recess that calls on lawmakers to stage press events with active duty military personnel, veterans and emergency responders to bash President Bush on virtually every one of his national security policies.
The game plan, devised by the office of Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, Nevada Democrat, is contained in a six-page memo distributed to Democratic senators... at a closed-door meeting at the Capitol and provided to The Washington Times by a congressional staffer.
Titled "Real Security," the political document calls for staged town hall events at military bases, weapons factories, National Guard units, fire stations and veterans posts."
This "Generals Revolt" propaganda is right in line and dragging Shinsekis' name back into the mix is classic old news rehash with fresh hyperbole we've been witnessing for the past ten days.

Geek, Esq.

We did not have the manpower to maintain order in Western Europe, we should never have launched the D-Day invasion!
Uh, we did have the manpower to stabilize Western Europe after WWII.


We did not have the remaining sea power to go up against the Japanese navy after Pearl Harbor. We should never have taken our "leftovers" into battle against a navy that totally controlled the Pacific!

Last time I read a history book, Japan started the war in the Pacific. So, we made no decision to go to war in that instance. We had no choice but to go to war in that instance.

And who's stupid idea was it to confront the British Empire with the most powerful army in the world at that time with a bunch of farmers with squirrel guns!

You do see the irony, given that the Americans were the insurgents and the British were the occupying army, right?


If Geek had only been in charge for the entire history of this nation, we'd be soooooooooooooooooooo much better off!

Try defending what's going on in Iraq instead of events and decisions that worked in our favor.


PeterUK

Geek,
Answer the question,if sufficient troops had been made available you would have supported the invasion of Iraq?

"a) It was possible to stabilize Iraq after conquering it, and they just failed at that aspect of the mission; or

This begs the question of whether it has actually failed.

b) it wasn't possible no matter what they did.

No there are numerous possibilities and permutations.

RLS

The "Generals", led by Franks were the ones that drafted the plans for Iraq. If you read Franks' book, you will see the preparation that went into the plans. A very deliberate process.

Gen. Pace outlined the give and take at a DoD presser:

http://www.defenselink.mil/transcripts/2006/tr20060411-12800.html

Geek, Esq.

"If it wasn't possible to preserve order in Iraq with the manpower available, then we really shouldn't have invaded in the first place. Simple as that."

So Geek,if sufficient troops had been made available you would have supported the invasion of Iraq?

If this administration was up to the task of stabilizing post-invasion Iraq, very possibly. But, that thought never occurred to me because it was plain as day that this administration was never up to the task.

PeterUK

Geek,
Apples and orange argument.
"We did not have the remaining sea power to go up against the Japanese navy after Pearl Harbor. We should never have taken our "leftovers" into battle against a navy that totally controlled the Pacific!

Last time I read a history book, Japan started the war in the Pacific. So, we made no decision to go to war in that instance. We had no choice but to go to war in that instance.

Lew is talking about going into BATTLE,you are talking about going to WAR.

Sue

Right on time...the DNC Easter Parade...

And in response to the criticisms of Rumsfeld and the calls for his resignation...Bush responds with Rumsfeld isn't going anywhere. Just as everyone expected him to do.

I don't have a problem with their criticisms, per se, just the fact that once again they are rewriting news as if it is 'new' news. Those criticizing Rumsfeld are basing it on old stuff, not what is happening today. Abu Graib. Not enough troops (which has been debated ad nausem, how do you unring the bell? Get a do-over? Pulling out in defeat?) It is what it is and all the I told you so's aren't going to change it. If Rumsfeld resigned, he would be replaced with someone like him. Why not have the geniune article?

PeterUK

Geek,
"So Geek,if sufficient troops had been made available you would have supported the invasion of Iraq?

If this administration was up to the task of stabilizing post-invasion Iraq, very possibly. But, that thought never occurred to me because it was plain as day that this administration was never up to the task."

I will take that as a NO! Your detailed knowledge of the conditions in post invasion Iraq is fascinating,you are probably the only person on the planet that knew exactly what would be required.

PeterUK

Sue,
"how do you unring the bell?"

!GNUD

PeterUK

Anyway Geek,unough of the frivolity,
"If this administration was up to the task of stabilizing post-invasion Iraq, very possibly. But, that thought never occurred to me because it was plain as day that this administration was never up to the task."

Would you have supported a Democratic administration invasion of Iraq?

noah

I think Gingrich's criticism is valid. That is, if I understand it correctly, that we should have set up a provisional government from the get go...to allow for the politics to be much further along.

Geek...you should read Hanson's short piece at NRO.

And then if you have the time read Tommy Franks' book. Its an eye-opener by a working class alcoholic that joined the Army, went to Officers Candidate School, worked his butt off, and got the frying pan command Centcom.

He's no admin toady.

Rick Ballard

Hmmm, what comes after Reid's Revolting Generals? Could be "Republicans Planning Additional Hurricanes This Summer to Wipe Out Minorities, Women and Children" unless it's "Republican Strategy to Increase Inflation Through a Tighter Job Market Revealed".

Wily E. Coyote, on the prowl again.

Cecil Turner

A resounding chorus of criticism is warranted regardless of which holds.

Sorry, no sale. The mission wasn't to "stabilize" Iraq (any more than it is now to get the troops home). Besides, an army can't inject political stability into a region (at least without exercising the Carthage option) . . . it can, however, remove threatening regimes, and keep unwanted influences (mostly) at bay while politicians work. There is no way to describe Iraq as a military failure (unless we decide to cut and run).

Moreover, the insurgency knows it. And as they have no attractive military options, it's precisely that hope which drives their strategy. (which mainly rely on spectacular attacks on soft targets and a very effective propaganda campaign). Further, the energetic public support from our useful idiots sustains that hope and is a major part of the problem.

woof

If they've ever had an independent thought, let me know....

Sorry, don't have time to talk to losers.

The Unbeliever
"how do you unring the bell?"

By electing more wishy washy Democrats into office, of course! Vote now for the new 2006 models, complete with American flags in the background and poseable Authentic War Veteran accessories, and you too can help ring back years of progress in the Middle East! Enjoy hours of fun with your new Democratic "no action EVER" figure--now you too can pretend to comprehend foreign policies, while secretly advocating for the a disastrous status quo!

(All models come with a "OMG war is hard, let's bail!" commemorative pin and a "Filibuster This" foil sticker.)

woof

Meanwhile here is good news that the mainstream news isn't telling us.

Maybe our generalship and civilian leadership isn't so bad do ya think?


Zarqawi, al Qaeda are heading out, U.S. general says
By Sharon Behn
THE WASHINGTON TIMES
April 14, 2006


Al Qaeda in Iraq and its presumed leader, Abu Musab Zarqawi, have conceded strategic defeat and are on their way out of the country, a top U.S. military official contended yesterday.
The group's failure to disrupt national elections and a constitutional referendum last year "was a tactical admission by Zarqawi that their strategy had failed," said Lt. Gen. John R. Vines, who commands the XVIII Airborne Corps.
"They no longer view Iraq as fertile ground to establish a caliphate and as a place to conduct international terrorism," he said in an address at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy.
Gen. Vines' statement came as news broke that coalition and Iraqi forces had killed an associate of Osama bin Laden's during an early morning raid near Abu Ghraib about two weeks ago.

PeterUK

Cecil,
"the energetic public support from our useful idiots sustains that hope and is a major part of the problem."

Is useful idiot a strong epithet enough for those whose appetite for failure is encouraging murder on the streets of Iraq? These scumbags are the enablers of terrorism.

noah

The most interesting thing I learned reading Franks' book was how little the Pentagon brass had to do with the war planning. As a matter of law they weren't even in the chain of command! The sniping was well underway before the first shot was fired in OIF. The public sniping by retired generals is no doubt fueled in part by private communications from active duty generals.

noah

Thanks woof.

Rick Ballard

Noah,

You may be conflating the Joint Chiefs and the Pentagon a bit too much. The Chiefs don't do operational planning but the Pentagon is definitely deeply involved.

noah

Maybe so Rick...I am just going Franks' book...Centcom did the war planning...the Pentagon figured out how to give him what he needed.

Sue

http://justoneminute.typepad.com/main/2006/04/the_revolt_agai.html#comment-16175221>::grin::

Jor

The party of personal responsibility at its finest. Just out of curiosity TM, what cirteria do you use to fire an employee? Bush's latest statement supporting rumsfeld is almost comical in the double-speak.

PeterUK

Jor,
You're fired,clear your desk,hand in your ID and vacate the thread!

Cecil Turner

The Chiefs don't do operational planning but the Pentagon is definitely deeply involved.

They are, but in a support role only. OPLANs belong to the supported Combatant Commander (what we used to call "CINCs"), and the chain of command goes up via (but not through) CJCS, to the SecDef and President. The service chiefs have no real say in the operational part of the process (and Shinseki had to know he was talking out of school when he made his famous remark). It's also amazing how many, even among military professionals, are confused on the point, and related command and control issues.

j.west

I’m interested in the semantics of the left on this issue.

Does the term “stabilize” mean a state of domination so complete that a car bomb or RPG shell could not be exploded?

Does the term “enough troops” mean a number sufficient to achieve the results as outlined in the term “stabilize”?

Were there some battles where our troops were so outnumbered that the addition of “enough troops” would have made the difference between winning and losing?

Is there some scientific theory showing that a car bomb detonated among “enough troops” somehow spreads the explosive force sufficiently so that fewer troops die?

Could someone clarify the term “win the war”? Previous to Iraq, I thought the phrase meant that one force had rendered the opposing force unable to mount any coordinate resistance and the established government had been deposed. If some disaffected Korean, Japanese or German sets off an explosion, is the war back on in that venue?

Had the U.S. been able to exert the total dominance some liberals seem to think we should have, would the result be “freedom and democracy” or simply an imposed order of a more benevolent dictator?

As with any other issue, it sure would help to define the terms.

(When the subject comes up, I would also like liberals to define other terms, like “rich”, “poor”, spending “cut”, “racism” and about 100 more well used words.

Semanticleo

jwest;

Let's see if your shotgun blast can be
funneled into a .223 single shot;

"Now that the idiots who bum rushed us into
this war have caused the multiple vehicle
wreck; what are ya'll gonna do to fix it?"

Patton

At first the Democrats were saying Shinseki's replacement was named AFTER he testified...BUT it was false and they got caught...I think Spruill had coverage of this a few months back from CNN, but don't have time to check.

But look how wrong Shinseki would have been...the Iraqis Army collapse and the terrorists went after targets of opportunity with car bombs, etc. so the MORE American troops, the more casualities we would have had.

Anyone thinking that 300,000 or 500,00 would have so called 'secured' the country is a pipe dream. You would have had the same problems unless you were willing to be as ruthless as Saddam and have shoot on sight, summary executions, etc. etc.

Anyway, all these Genrals are doing is ensuring Rumsfeld stays right where he is, so good going generals.

j.west

Semanticleo,

You seem to imply that something is going wrong. Could you be more specific?

The “war” against the 4th largest standing army was “mission accomplished” within 3 weeks, including a sandstorm and without the use of our most technically advanced division. Pretty much a “piece of cake”.

If Bush had planned an imperialistic expansion of the American Empire, he should have sent in enough troops to enslave the Iraqis so that the theft of oil would be unimpaired. However, for some altruistic reason, he sent in just enough troops to depose the government and render the Iraqi armed forces unusable.

Now, a group of “old school” generals culled from the top-heavy bureaucracy of a bloated military whine that they, blessed with the gift of hindsight, would have done a few things differently. Apparently they fall into the Murtha inspired theory that we need a strong military, but we must never use it. Or perhaps they are in the John Kerry band of brothers who believe that the military of the U.S. should only be used with the consensus of the U.N.

The insane panic the left is experiencing is due to the fear that the strategic vision of a free and democratic Iraq will be realized prior to the 2008 elections, with the accolades for changing the dynamic of the Middle East placed squarely in the lap of G.W. Bush. After which, people will need to go to a wax museum to see a “Democrat”.

Nothing more than time is needed to “fix” Iraq. The Iraqi people are waking up to the fact that this isn’t just a pause between dictators.

clarice

Well put jw.(BTW, The Wash Times is reporting today that Zarqawi is quitting Iraq in defeat and strategy page reports on the economic boom inIraq). Having watched the media (and the Dems' horrid sense of timing) I expect you are right.

Barney Frank

The funniest thing by far in this whole story is to listen to the lefties tell us how the civilian (Rumsfeld) should be pushed aside and the generals ought to be running the show.
Not quite what we heard in the 60s is it?

That is why the left is held in such disdain by decent people of all political stripes;, not because they're wrong as much as because they are fundamentally dishonest ideologues who will say anything to score a point even if its the opposite of what they said last week.

clarice

IIRC the week before 9/11 officials at the CIA were in mandated "sensitivity" training classes making quilts and Janet Karpinskki was touted as the new face of the military. Thanks..I don't want to see these people any more.

PeterUK

What is so reprhensible,is that the strategy of the left is predicated on Iraq being a disaster,it is the only way they can vindicate their treachery.If Iraq is a success,then the left will stand naked before the bar of public opinion,will they walk again like they did with their support of Stalin.
Place your bets folks.

clarice

Award winning journos and Pulitzer prize winning historians will simply retouch the historic record in that event Peter, as they've done before.(I know it is said that history is written by the victors but in recent years it is more often written by the losers' cohorts in the press and academia.)

PeterUK

Clarice,
But this time the great unwashed have the internet
It is going to come back and haunt the left

windansea

13 April 2006

Iraqi Infrastructure Attacks Down 60 Percent in Last Three Months
Decrease due to presence of 250,000 Iraqi security forces, U.S. general says

Washington -- Attacks against Iraq's vital infrastructure have decreased by 60 percent over the past three months, the spokesman for Multi-National Force-Iraq said April 13.

Army Major General Rick Lynch, who briefed reporters at the Pentagon via teleconference from Baghdad, said the decrease is directly due to the presence of 250,000 trained and equipped Iraqi security forces operating all across the country, conducting important missions.

http://usinfo.state.gov/xarchives/display.html?p=washfile-english&y=2006&m=April&x=20060413191707adynned0.1136438&t=livefeeds/wf-latest.html

lefty response: that's just propaganda from some evil bushbot warmongering General

but these generals over here...they're good generals!!

PeterUK

Well General Custer was a Democrat.

JM Hanes

Excuse me, but where exactly is the news here -- let alone the floodgates?

*Zinni is promoting a book.

*When Harry Reid calls for a uniformed attack on the Administration, a couple of familiar faces respond:

*Gen. Swannack has been offering up this critique for nearly two years since May 2004.
NOTE TO GEEK: Said critique has nothing to do with troop numbers, and it was Swannack who once said that the number of troops available was never a problem.

*Gen. Riggs, per the NY Times own closing paragraphs, was also already "clashing with civilian leaders" back in 2004 when he left the Pentagon -- where he was "being investigated for potential misuse of contractor personnel."

*Maj. Gen. John Batiste just doesn't like Rumsfeld's management style.
NOTE TO GEEK: No complaint on numbers here either. In fact, he faults leadership for a failure to mobilize public in support of military ops.

*Some folks at the Pentagon resent interference .... from their boss!

The only thing that could conceivably be called new here is that these three retirees, who, by the way, served in Iraq, decided to pin the tail on Rumsfeld. I'm not sure how that really qualifies as an "unusual outcry" though, except in contrast to almost everybody else who has retired from that particular field, apparently without finding anything seriously worthy of complaint.

I'm willing to entertain any substantive critique that can be made, and to give added weight to military experience where winning and losing military engagements is concerned. When the New York Times start publishing something that actually trandscends talking points, I hope someone will let me know.

maryrose

I go back to my pet theory and belief. All persons and that includes generals no longer in power; be quiet! We don't care what you say or think. You are out of the loop and no longer a player. I don't care about any book you want to sell I won't read because you have already annoyed me by speaking out of turn when your opinion was not asked for. Get off the stage and come back in 5 years when things have progressed and there is a real perspective in place. This also includes Wilson Sheehan All previous WH or administration personnel. Your 15 minutes are up-exit stage right.

El Cank

Who promoted these Generals to their highest positions? Bubba, that's who. Surprise, surprise.

clarice

Four of the six are Army which--surprise is being trimmed the most by the Sec of Defense.. Of course, they'd be happy reworking and reworking their plans for racing in huge tanks across the Hungarian Plain..LOL
Victor Davis Hanson did a great job with this hooey.http://www.nationalreview.com/hanson/hanson200604130743.asp

maryrose

Bubba Huh; Well that explains everything. I also never liked the fact that President Bush kept Tenet on his being a Clinton appointee and all. He certainly has been completely useless in this Plame investigation.

woof

One needs manpower to secure a country and establish some sort of order

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This was proved when less than 100 SF organized a rag tag 'northern alliance' and toppled the Taliban.

Mescalero

To those who giggle over retired generals/admirals railing against SecDef Rumsfeld. Do you remember a certain Air Force Chief of Staff named Ron Fogleman? Probably not, because he had serious problems with corrupt Willy Clinton. Just remember, Clinton erected the Gorelick wall that resulted in 9/11. Need I say more?

clarice

I haven't Mescalero. Why not tell us or give us a link?

Soylent Red

j.west, clarice, et. al.:

You nailed it. What we have here is a bunch of containment theory, Powell Doctrine generals who are mad as hell that Rumsfeld is post facto messing with their former fiefdoms.

I find it amusing, to say the least, that the party who is at its core most vocally anti-military, would suddenly seize upon the castrated voices of Pentagon-past to relaunch an assualt on Rummy. Think about it. What force restructuring is really all about is changing the currently unbeatable military behemoth into a supple force for nation-building.

Isn't that what Clinton's foreign policy was all about? The key difference here is that Bush signed on Rummy to actually put together the military we'll need into the future (avoiding further Mogadishu's) instead of trying to fight 4-G conflicts with a 3-G force, as Clinton did.

Ah but lo and behold, old school Pentagon types don't like that nonsense. Better to stick to the 5-1 take and hold ratios, and conventional infantry heavy MOS mix that is tried and true (all the way back to WWI). It would be far, far to disconcerting to realize that since your desk propping ass was retired that the world had changed.

Seriously, f*ck these guys and all who stand with them. The one thing we've done right (in terms of actual grand strategy) in the last six years is to finally realize the true nature of the conflicts we're most likely to be getting into.

Iraq is a situation where we didn't have the proper mix of follow on forces to hold the peace. Yeah that sucks for the guys there learning the lessons, but Rumsfeld, Bush and Jesus Christ put together couldn't remake the armed forces in a day. If we'd have waited for the right force mix, we'd probably never have taken Saddam out.

Nothing worse than a bunch of washed up flags backseat driving. Except maybe a bunch of washed up politicos using it as a gotcha.

larwyn

Two links that should be part of this thread, both from American Thinker:
General Zinni and Pre-War Intelligence
April 14th, 2006

Former CENTCOM commander General Anthony Zinni recently added his two cents worth to retired Army Maj. Gen. Paul Eaton’s call for the resignation of Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld, over his alleged incompetent leadership in conducting the Iraq War. Zinni resurrected the old complaints that there was a lack of “credible planning” for Iraq and that the US had acted unilaterally by “not adhering to the advice that was being given to us by others.”These criticisms are nothing new. Zinni long ago joined the ranks of retired flag officers who voiced opposition to a war that they felt was based on intelligence manipulated by the administration. In addition, Zinni and Cold War-era techno-military author Tom Clancy expanded on this notion of flawed pre-war intelligence to proclaim that there was no casus belli for war with Iraq. General Zinni has even said that the current administration focuses on blind loyalty rather than emphasizing results:
…integrity, honesty and performance and competence have to outweigh, in this business, loyalty.
Zinni is absolutely correct on the principles espoused in his assertion. So, let’s look at his own pre-war threat evaluation, and just as important, his own loyalties to the players in the Central Region in light of these noble principles.

RIA and Read this one too!
The Hidden History of the Iraq War Critics
They are refuted by the facts which they and their media allies refuse to acknowledge.John B. Dwyer

Each day they prove by their own words that they do not know even recent history (pre-Bush).
Is this a condition of their:

Mendacity?

Or truly a psych disorder?

And if they all, this ~20% that is considered the FAR FAR LEFT, are suffering from a psych discorder - isn't it rather a coincidence that this 20% is also a figure I have read for "recreational" drug users.

Wonder how they overlap? Cause they sure can't even remember what was going on or being said in 2002, let alone in 1997/98.

larwyn

Tommy Franks on Hardball -

Does anyone have a link to a transcript yet?

Semanticleo

"You seem to imply that something is going wrong."

First. I just have to know.

Are you Tweedledum or Tweedledee?

PeterUK

Which are you Dana or Gilbert,reminds me of the movie Victor Victoria.

PeterUK

As has been promulgated above this is all part of Harry Reids Ardennes Offensive,examinintg the motley crew who are baying for Rumsfeld resignation it is obvious that the main targets are Bush and the invasion of Iraq.
Lets face it if Rumsfeld and his policies were detrimental to the President this lot would be sacrificing their first born to Gaia to keep him in office,the fact that the opposite is true is a positive indication that Rumsfeld is an asset.
The plan seems to be,Rumsfeld resigns,odium attaches itself to Bush,chaos is created in Iraq,one more push and the US can be out of there by Christmas,no victory under a Republican administration.
Of course this would also suit Iran,so who is paying?

maryrose

PeterUK:
The left and the dems are
misunderestimating President Bush again if they think he is going to fall for their oh so trasparent attempts to marginalize his staff. I am stunned that as a once major political party the dems have nothing but cut and run and the hapless Kerry as their spokesperson. The left have totally co-opted Kerry and I wonder had he been elected how long it would have taken the far left to get Kerry bent to their mindset. It's truly frightening when you think how close we came to that happening. Living in Ohio,after the 2000 election my family realized how important each and every vote is in the larger scheme of things.
Larwyn:
I saw the Hardball interview with Franks- it's Msnbc trying to appear "fair and balanced". Ben veniste' I agree Specter is a partisan hack. No wonder they picked him to be their rep on the 9'/11 commission. A completely useless point of view and once again statements about Libby and President Bush and Cheney that are completely false. I used to like Matthews too Specter, but he has become a one trick pony on the war in Iraq.

Semanticleo

Ah! The ever clever, PeterUberKleine

PeterUK

Maryrose,
I agree,but looking at how many of them did Uncle Joes bidding,for love or for money,how many have simply replaced him with Uncle Mullah.

PeterUK

Glib Dana,do you have a point,other than your cranial malformation?

PeterUK

Not very good at the Deutsch either,UK so obviously stands for UberKommenter

Semanticleo

"Well General Custer was a Democrat."

"examinintg the motley crew who are baying for Rumsfeld resignation it is obvious that the main targets are Bush and the invasion of Iraq."

"The plan seems to be,Rumsfeld resigns,odium attaches itself to Bush,chaos is created in Iraq,one more push and the US can be out of there by Christmas,"

Ever clever was a facetious reference
to the diminutive peter. Can someone
please choose amongst the three bursts
of flatulent air above and vote for the
one most representative of their author's
naked talent for introspective thought?

kim

Hey Lion with a Lakhoff Heart, your flammable words don't address his point. Enough ad asinines.
===================

clarice

Slate has fun with this--6 retired generals hate Rumsfeld:

Quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
It's hard to get good numbers, but the Explainer estimates that about 4,700 general officers are enjoying their retirement in the United States right now. (For a detailed look at the data and the Explainer's calculations, click here.) That means the six former generals who stepped forward to criticize Rumsfeld make up about one-tenth of 1 percent of the total community.

Retired generals pipe up all the time. In March, five of them wrote a letter to the Supreme Court asking that Justice Scalia recuse himself from the Hamdan case. In January, nine generals and three admirals banded together as the "Retired Generals Against Torture" and sent an open letter to the Senate judiciary committee. During campaign season, retired generals issue small-group political endorsements.

Bonus Explainer: The group of six that have been in the news includes four major generals, one lieutenant general, and one general. What's the difference? The plain old "general" has the highest rank—he wears four stars on his uniform. Three-star generals are called lieutenant generals, and two stars get you the title of major general. Brigadier generals wear only one star. (The Army, Air Force, and Marine Corps all use "general" titles. In the Navy, the top four positions are admiral, vice admiral, and two levels of rear admiral.)
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

www.slate.com/id/2139847/

Semanticleo

Kim;

Since you wish to grab the lion's ears,
perchance you could cypher his point, and
maybe even vote on the above, as you
disagree on the degree of his melon vacuum.

kim

Yeah, Purry One, the incompetent Dems are trying to make the extremely competent prosecution of that war an issue. It's as absurd as putting Kerry forth as a military leader.
================================

PeterUK

"introspective thought?" You can't do English either can you Glib Dana? These are statements,personally I like "Well General Custer was a Democrat." succinct, accurate and exemplifies the Democrats.

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Wilson/Plame