Thursday, April 26, 2007


"We should never question anybody's patriotism if they don't happen to agree with the President."George W. Bush
April 19, 2007

"Beware of all enterprises that require new clothes."

"As the struggle evolves some of the language will evolve as well."
A senior administration official said.

The Bush administration famously based its argument for invading Iraq on best-case assumptions: that we would be greeted as liberators; that a capable democratic government would quickly emerge; that our military presence would be modest and temporary; and that Iraqi oil revenues would pay for everything. All these assumptions, of course, turned out to be wrong.
Now, many of the same people who pushed for the invasion are arguing for escalating our military involvement based on a worst-case assumption: that if America leaves quickly, the Apocalypse will follow. "How would [advocates of withdrawal] respond to the eruption of full-blown civil war in Iraq and the massive ethnic cleansing it would produce?" write Robert Kagan and William Kristol in the Weekly Standard. "How would they respond to the intervention of Iraq's neighbors, including Iran, Syria, and Turkey? And most important, what would they propose to do if, as a result of our withdrawal and the collapse of Iraq, al Qaeda and other terrorist groups managed to establish a safe haven from which to launch attacks against the United States and its allies?"
Similar rhetoric has been a staple of President Bush's recent speeches. If the United States "fails" in Iraq -- his euphemism for withdrawal -- the president said in January, "[r]adical Islamic extremists would grow in strength and gain new recruits. They would be in a better position to topple moderate governments, create chaos in the region, and use oil revenues to fund their ambitions ... Our enemies would have a safe haven from which to plan and launch attacks on the American people."
This kind of thinking is also accepted by a wide range of liberal hawks and conservative realists who, whether or not they originally supported the invasion, now argue that the United States must stay. It was evident in the Iraq Study Group, led by James Baker and Lee Hamilton, which, participants say, was alarmed by expert advice that withdrawal would produce potentially catastrophic consequences. Even many antiwar liberals believe that a quick pullout would cause a bloodbath. Some favor withdrawal anyway, to cut our own losses. Others demur out of geostrategic concerns, a feeling of moral obligation to the Iraqis, or the simple fear that Democrats will be blamed for the ensuing chaos.
But if it was foolish to accept the best-case assumptions that led us to invade Iraq, it's also foolish not to question the worst-case assumptions that undergird arguments for staying. Is it possible that a quick withdrawal of U.S. forces will lead to a dramatic worsening of the situation? Of course it is, just as it's possible that maintaining or escalating troops there could fuel the unrest. But it's also worth considering the possibility that the worst may not happen: What if the doomsayers are wrong?
The al-Qaeda myth
To understand why it's a mistake to assume the worst, let's begin with the most persistent, Bush-fostered fear about post-occupation Iraq: that al-Qaeda or other Islamic extremists will seize control once America departs; or that al-Qaeda will establish a safe haven in a rump, lawless Sunnistan and use that territory as a base, much as it used Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.
The idea that al-Qaeda might take over Iraq is nonsensical. Numerous estimates show that the group called Al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) and its foreign fighters comprise only 5 to 10 percent of the Sunni insurgents' forces. Most Sunni insurgents are simply what Wayne White -- who led the State Department's intelligence effort on Iraq until 2005 -- calls POIs, or "pissed-off Iraqis," who are fighting because "they don't like the occupation." But the foreign terrorist threat is frequently advanced by the Bush administration, often with an even more alarming variant -- that al-Qaeda will use Iraq as a headquarters for the establishment of a global caliphate. In December 2005, Rear Admiral William D. Sullivan, vice director for strategic plans and policy within the Joint Chiefs of Staff, delivered a briefing in which he warned that al-Qaeda hoped to "revive the caliphate," with its capital in Baghdad. President Bush himself has warned darkly that after controlling Iraq, Islamic militants will "establish a radical Islamic empire that spans from Spain to Indonesia."
The reality is far different. Even if AQI came to dominate the Sunni resistance, it would be utterly incapable of seizing Baghdad against the combined muscle of the Kurds and the Shiites, who make up four fifths of the country. (The Shiites, in particular, would see the battle against the Sunni extremist AQI -- which regards the Shiites as a heretical, non-Muslim sect -- as a life-or-death struggle.)
Nor is it likely that AQI would ever be allowed to use the Sunni areas of Iraq as a base from which to launch attacks on foreign targets. In Afghanistan, al-Qaeda had a full-fledged partnership with the Taliban and helped finance the state. In Iraq, the secular Baathists and former Iraqi military officers who lead the main force of the resistance despise AQI, and many of the Sunni tribes in western Iraq are closely tied to Saudi Arabia's royal family, which is bitterly opposed to al-Qaeda. AQI has, at best, a marriage of convenience with the rest of the Sunni-led resistance. Over the past two years, al-Qaeda-linked forces in Iraq have often waged pitched battles with the mainstream Iraqi resistance and Sunni tribal forces. Were U.S. troops to leave Iraq today, the Baathists, the military, and the tribal leaders would likely join forces to exterminate AQI in short order.

Leaving Iraq: Apocalypse Not
By Robert Dreyfuss
Washington MonthlyFebruary 19, 2007

“In this case, the idea that we are going to be involved in a ‘Long War,’ at the current level of operations, is not likely and is unhelpful.

We remain committed to our friends and allies in the region and to countering al-Qaida inspired extremism where it manifests itself. But one of our goals is to lessen our presence over time, and we didn’t feel that the term ‘Long War’ captured this nuance.”Centcom spokesman Lt. Col. Matt McLaughlin
“We’ve never had a government like this. The United States has done wicked things in the past to other countries but never on such a scale and never in such an existentialist way. It’s as though we are evil. We strike first. We’ll destroy you. This is an eternal war against terrorism. It’s like a war against dandruff. There’s no such thing as a war against terrorism. It’s idiotic. These are slogans. These are lies. It’s advertising, which is the only art form we ever invented and developed. But our media has collapsed. They’ve questioned no one. One of the reasons Bush and Cheney are so daring is that they know there’s nobody to stop them. Nobody is going to write a story that says this is not a war, only Congress can declare war. And you can only have a war with another country. You can’t have a war with bad temper or a war against paranoids. Nothing makes any sense, and the people are getting very confused. The people are not stupid, but they are totally misinformed.”
Gore Vidal
Only when US troops are withdrawn will Iraq move to the next stage in its development. That stage is unlikely to be pretty. It will involve jockeying for position by different religious and ethnic groupings, and the likelihood is that the violence that we now see will continue. Only one thing will change: The Iraqis will be in charge of their destiny. And that change is, of course, the essential one.
That's why the vast majority of Iraqis tell pollsters that the US occupying forces should leave.
It is time to put aside fantasies, and fantastical strategies, and recognize that the next chapter in Iraq's history will only begin when foreign military forces leave.
Strategists in Washington should be developing a plan for US troops to surge homeward, not pushing a scheme to send more young men and women into a hopeless--and deadly--quagmire.

[From “Surging” in the Wrong Direction
By John Nichols/The Nation/Posted
“My fear is that sectarian violence in Iraq has taken on a life of its own and that U.S. forces are becoming more and more irrelevant to the management of that violence."
From At the Center of the Storm
By George J. Tenet

"The president has let (the Iraq war) proceed on automatic pilot, making no corrections in the face of accumulating evidence that his strategy is failing and cannot be rescued. He lets the United States fly further and further into trouble, squandering its influence, money and blood".
Retired Army Lieutenant General William Odom
April 28, 2007


The Decisive Ideological Struggle of the 21st century.
The Long War.
The War on Terrorism.
The Global War on Terrorism or GWOT.
The Global War on Extremism.
The Test of Wills against Islamofascism.
The Generational War.

Instead of giving any new names to the Fabricated Pre-Emptive Iraq War by Bush and Dick…
No new names will be required.
Radicals and Extremists will have less motivation to kill.
Yes, it is certain that they will still fight to get Power to rule the roost in Iraq.
But if the occupier and invader leave, Iraqi radicals and extremists will start scratching their heads and ask themselves:
Iraqis will also fight to remove the Al-Qaeda invaders who were not in their homeland before Shock and Awe arrived.
Rival Iraqi sects will put more energy into removing other foreigners from their soil if the U.S. is out of Iraq.

If the Decider and all of his followers believe that the evil terrorists will come to America if the United States leaves Iraq...
Then begin investing all of those billions into securing THIS HOMELAND'S OWN BORDERS AND PORTS!
In the meantime, the new and broader name(s) for the WAR ON TERRORISM maintains and perpetuates the big business of PERPETUAL WAR.
Profits, profits, profits!
By Mad Plato

Here are some words by George W. Bush:

"The war against terrorists is a war against individuals who hide in caves in remote parts of the world, individuals who have these kind of shadowy networks, individuals who deal with rogue nations."
George W. Bush
"There is no such thing necessarily in a dictatorial regime of iron-clad absolutely solid evidence. The evidence I had was the best possible evidence that he had a weapon."
George W. Bush
[Comment: Freudian slip or what? Whose dictatorship is being referred to here?]
"The solution to Iraq -- an Iraq that can govern itself, sustain itself and defend itself -- is more than a military mission. Precisely the reason why I sent more troops into Baghdad."
George W. Bush
Washington, D.C.
April 3, 2007
"The only way we can win is to leave before the job is done."
George W. Bush
Greeley, Colorado
Nov. 4, 2006
[Comment: This one is just incredible! He must have had more than beer and pretzels.]
"The United States of America is engaged in a war against an extremist group of folks."
George W. Bush
McLean, Va.
Aug. 15, 2006
And now we're involved in -- I call it a global war against terror. You can't call it a global war against extremists, a global war against radicals, a global war against people who want to hurt America; you can call it whatever you want, but it is a global effort. And the major battlefield in this global war is Iraq. And I want to spend some time talking about Iraq.”
George W. Bush
[Yes! He actually said "You can't call it a global war..."
I checked the speech at two different sources.]
“This enemy is smart, capable, and unpredictable. They have defined a war on the United States, and I believe we're at war. I believe the attack on America made it clear that we're at war. I wish that wasn't the case. Nobody ought to ever hope to be a war President, or a presidency---President during war.”
George W. Bush

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