Thursday, June 22, 2006

Iran in Iraq

General Casey, Commander, Multinational Force Iraq talked about the security situation at a briefing in the Pentagon (June 22, 2006) and chose to highlight the role of Iran. Here's the relevant portion of his briefing in its entirety for context. I've added inline references. The first three factors he identifies in Iraqi violence are al-Qaeda in Iraq, lawless armed groups and the Sunni insurgency. In Casey's apparent estimation, the Sunni insurgency is "reaching out" and looking to end their resistance "with honor". They are apparently in contact with the Coalition. However armed groups of sectarian and criminal thugs have become a major problem in themselves. But the rising problem is the role of Iran. (includes update on the peace deal that has just been offered by the Iraqi government to the Sunni insurgency)

I'd just say a word about the insurgency. People say the insurgency's growing because attacks are up. Now, what I'd tell you it's more complex. It's more complex than the insurgency is growing. The insurgency hasn't expanded. Fourteen of the 18 provinces still have about nine attacks a day or less. And if you look at where the sectarian violence is occurring, it's occurring within about a 30-mile -- 90 percent of it is occurring in about a 30- mile radius around Baghdad; some down in Basra, some in Diyala Province, the majority right there in the center of the country. So, much more complex environment, not necessarily a worse security environment. ...

The security environment is quite complex ... but it has increased in its complexity, really, since the December elections and in the aftermath of the Samarra bombing [this would be a reference to the Al Askari Golden Mosque attack on February 22, 2006] ... Al Qaeda is hurt in the aftermath of Zarqawi's death ... as a result of information found in the course of raids  ... but they're not finished. And they won't be finished for some time.

The second big security challenge ... are these illegal armed groups ... And I say illegal armed groups rather than militias because militias take people in too many different directions. ...  They are not the nine groups of militia that are mentioned in the CPA law that fought Saddam. These are criminals. ...

The third element that adds complexity ... is the fact that the ...  Sunni insurgency, has been since the elections reaching out and looking for ways to reevaluate their options and to come out of the resistance against occupation with honor. And we are --we and the Iraqi government have several different strands of contacts going on, and there are opportunities in that regard that we just haven't had before. ... [Just at this writing The Times of London is reporting that the Iraqi Government has offered an amnesty to Sunni insurgents. "The 28-point package for national reconciliation will offer Iraqi resistance groups inclusion in the political process and an amnesty for their prisoners if they renounce violence and lay down their arms, The Times can reveal."]

Now for the Iranians.

And the fourth element that I'd suggest to you that adds complexity to the security environment is Iran. And we are quite confident that the Iranians, through their covert special operations forces, are providing weapons, IED technology and training to Shi'a extremist groups in Iraq, the training being conducted in Iran and in some cases probably in Lebanon through their surrogates. They are conducting -- using surrogates to conduct terrorist operations in Iraq, both against us and against the Iraqi people. It's decidedly unhelpful.

One reasonable way to interpret Casey's briefing is that he is asserting that the internal organized resistance (al-Qaeda in Iraq and the Sunni insurgency) is on the wane, but that externally instigated violence is on the rise. Some journalists at the briefing picked up on the highlighted role of Iran and began to focus their questions on it. In those exchanges, both Casey and Rumsfeld chose to emphasize Iranian logistical support for Shi'ite armed groups and the role of the Lebanese Hezbollah. They did not directly point the finger at Teheran. That would come later, but by implication.

Q General, in describing Iran's role in providing training and weapons for some of the insurgent or Shi'a inside Iraq, you used the word "surrogates." Does that mean that Iranians are actually directing these attacks? And if so, what is the United States military and, Mr. Secretary, the United States in general prepared to do about that?

GEN. CASEY: I have no evidence that there are Iranians in Iraq that are actually directing attacks. They are providing the materiel to Shi'a extremist groups that operate as their surrogates.

SEC. RUMSFELD: I thought you used the word "surrogate" in connection with Lebanon also -- when you were speaking earlier. I thought --

GEN. CASEY: There are some indications that Lebanese Hezbollah is also used in some of the training functions for the Iranians. So, another surrogate.

SEC. RUMSFELD: And Iran's the principal -- (word inaudible) -- then.

GEN. CASEY: But, I mean, you can't -- I can't believe that they're not giving them this equipment to them knowing that it's going to be used against us. Of course they do.

Another journalist picked up the Iranian thread after discussion had turned to "when are we bringing the boys home". The journalist wanted to know what the US was going to do about the Iranian intervention.

Q Mr. Secretary, given General Casey's concern about the Iranians, has the U.S. government communicated its concern to the Iranian government through some diplomatic channels?

SEC. RUMSFELD: You'd have to ask the State Department, but -- precisely what they've done in that regard. But I think it's safe to assume that given General Casey's concern, General Abizaid's concern, and my concern, that -- I hate to speak for them, but -- (pauses) -- I guess I shouldn't speak for them. I'll leave it for them. But clearly, I've said so publicly, General Casey said so publicly. They're not in the dark about the extent to which we're aware of what they're doing, which is notably unhelpful and causing the death of Americans.

Q Has it increased, Mr. Secretary?


GEN. CASEY: Since January, we have seen an upsurge in their support, particularly to the Shi'a extremist groups.

January 2006 was probably the time (at least in my opinion) when it became obvious that the Sunni insurgency had failed. It was also when it became probable that an Iraqi government would inevitably be formed. Did that fact provide the impetus for Iran to increase it's role in the hopes of subverting this new government? It's worth recalling Casey's words at the start of his briefing. "The security environment is quite complex ... but it has increased in its complexity, really, since the December elections and in the aftermath of the Samarra bombing".  Another journalist, perhaps recalling that General Casey had mentioned Iranian special forces in his initial remarks, kept pushing.

SEC. RUMSFELD: I think we better make this the last question. Behind you, Pam.

Q General, staying on the same topic, it's sometimes difficult to sense who is pulling the strings when it comes to Iran. Are we talking about the Iranian central government pulling strings on things going on in Iraq? Are we talking about Revolutionary Guard elements? Can you elaborate a bit more who you think in Iran is actually directing this stuff?

Q And who they're helping.

SEC. RUMSFELD: Do you think there are rogue elements milling around Iran?

GEN. CASEY: It is a very complicated country. What we see, though, is their Qods Force, their special -- covert special operations forces, are the ones that are directing this. Now, you would assume that they're not doing that independently, that there is some central direction from somebody in Tehran.

Q Is the aid primarily to Sadr's forces, or is it spread between Sadr, Badr, the people in Maysan?

GEN. CASEY: We think they're supporting all of the -- not all of the groups, but a wide variety of groups across southern Iraq.

SEC. RUMSFELD: We'll make this the last question. Right here.

Secretary Rumsfeld must have been happy to change the subject and the line of questioning drifted off the North Korea after this point, with Rumsfeld becoming increasingly playful and jovial.


Though nowhere is it categorically stated, it might be reasonable to summarize the situation as the Casey described it (or wished to portray it) in the following way:

  • The internally organized insurgency (al-Qaeda in Iraq, the Sunni insurgency) is decline. Al-Qaeda in Iraq is hurt and perhaps dying; the Sunnis are looking to throw in the towel.
  • Criminal gangs and ethnic militias are the rising threat. But Casey does not appear all that worried. "And if you look at where the sectarian violence is occurring, it's occurring within about a 30-mile -- 90 percent of it is occurring in about a 30- mile radius around Baghdad"
  • Something happened "since the December elections and in the aftermath of the Samarra bombing" that made the security situation "more complex". And that something appears to be the increasing role of Iran using the Lebanese Hezbollah and Qods to direct and support "a wide variety of groups across southern Iraq".

The recently announced Iraqi government peace proposal to the Sunnis was in all probability already known to both Rumsfeld and Casey when they gave this briefing. If I were to guess, and I emphasize guess, it means that the US is now in the process of shifting its strategic focus from al-Qaeda and Sunni threats to Iran.


Blogger Mad Fiddler said...

Reuters is reporting (6/22/2006 12:47:31 am) that gunmen in police uniforms murdered a third lawyer from Saddam Hussein’s defense team. The question naturally arises “Who benefits from this sort of intimidation and liquidation of his defenders?”

Some answers leap to mind: (1) former Ba’athist supporters of Saddam, hoping to spring him somehow, (2) groups who want Saddam dead and buried, and (3) Iran, who want Iraq stirred up and chaotic.

To me, the inability of Saddam’s defense team to maintain their own personal security is as much an index of the general state of things as any of the other miserable deaths.

And I have to ask, if they get Ramsey, do we forgive them all the other misdeeds?

6/22/2006 09:39:00 PM  
Blogger wretchardthecat said...

Suddenly the situation in Ramadi becomes comprehensible. The Times of London article on the peace deal says Khalilzad has been negotiating this for months.

Peace negotiations involve an alternate process of sweet talk and brutal beatings. Sign? Beat on the head? Sign? Beat on the head. With both sides repeating as necessary. So the fact that this offer will be made doesn't mean it'll be all smooth sailing. There will be holdouts. There should be no amnesty for anyone who has killed an American. None.

Peronally I think Saddam has just heard the trapdoor grate under him on the gallows. In Iran there will probably be lights burning in the all the ministries.

6/22/2006 09:45:00 PM  
Blogger Mad Fiddler said...

If anyone challenges the shape of the table...


6/22/2006 10:28:00 PM  
Blogger Alexis said...

I have suspected that Iranian surrogates were behind pushing the Shi'ite reaction to the destruction of the al-Askari mosque. That is, a wise domestic Shi'ite response would have been to consolidate alliances, ensure support of key Sunnis, and then go in en masse to punish those responsible. Instead, the Shi'ite reaction was practically designed to incite sectarian warfare.

(It's interesting how Moqtada as-Sadr was in Lebanon when the al-Askari mosque was blown up and his militia went on the rampage. Of course, once he got back home, he pulled on the reins to stop the violence. How convenient...)

The relationship between Iran and many Iraqi Shi'ite political parties is similar to the relationship the Soviet Union had with Yugoslavia's Communist Party before Tito overtly broke with Stalin. The difference is that Tito and Milovan Djilas were able to crack down on Stalinists in Yugoslavia's Communist Party in the usual Communist manner, while the ability for Iraqi political parties to conduct similar purges on Iranian agents is much lower in a liberal democratic context.

If one considers how FDR's administration got manipulated by Stalin and then consider that Iran's infiltration of Shi'ite parties is at least ten times as strong, one can imagine how difficult Iraq's situation is.

6/22/2006 10:39:00 PM  
Blogger wretchardthecat said...

They've known all along. Rumored negotiations were reported long ago. The transfer of Sunni effort to Baghdad reported a long time ago. This must have been what held back naming the defense and interior ministers. Now it makes sense. A Sunni defense and a Shi'a for interior. Each with the cred to do what needs being done. Then the bruited pullout of Brits, Japanese, etc. Then the seeking of the death sentence for Saddam. Then the press conference naming Iran.

6/22/2006 11:28:00 PM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

Bank Records Secretly Tapped
Administration Began Using Global Database Shortly After 2001 Attacks
By Barton Gellman, Paul Blustein and Dafna Linzer
Washington Post Staff Writers
Friday, June 23, 2006; Page A01

"The Bush administration, relying on a presidential declaration of emergency, has secretly been tapping into a vast global database of confidential financial transactions for nearly five years, according to U.S. government and industry officials."

This is the motherload of data to track any support by Iran to any surrogate. It is simply the best way for the US to track Iranian support to surrogates, yet it is also another disturbing intrusion by government into private lives of ordinary citizens. It is another dilemma in a growing labyrinth of connections and consequences to ordinary life brought on by the GWOT. I crave the simplicity of pre 911.

6/22/2006 11:45:00 PM  
Blogger sam said...

Iran seriously considering nuclear offer: Annan:

"I believe it is considering this offer very seriously, as I have urged it to do, and I hope it will give the sufficient answer before too long," Annan told a press conference after a closed-door meeting with Iranian Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki in Geneva.

Iran maintains that its interest in nuclear energy is purely for peaceful purposes, Annan said.

He said he had told Iranian leaders, including Mottaki, that "it is very much in their interest to convince the world of that by cooperating fully with the International Atomic Energy Agency."

Iran Considering

6/22/2006 11:59:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

It shows the hypocrisy in politics: just yesterday in an endless Senate debate anyone who favored setting a deadline for troop withdrawal was said to be for "cut and run" and "surrender"; General Casey gave three reasons why setting the date would be a terrible idea; and now we read that the Bush administration and "The [Iraqi] Government will promise a finite, UN-approved timeline for the withdrawal of all foreign troops from Iraq; a halt to US operations against insurgent strongholds"!!!

"The draft marks the first time the Iraqi Government has endorsed a fixed timeline for the withdrawal of coalition forces from Iraq, a key demand of the Sunni insurgency."

When the amnesty and "compensation" is included, what is the Sunni resistance giving up? Nothing it sounds like to me, this is total surrender to them. Not only are the Sunnis not punished, but they get paid a reward.

We will see more of the Arafat syndrome here, where the Sunnis get to cut the cake and eat it too. Attacks against the government and Shiites will continue from Sunni territory, but the Sunnis will say that they come from foreign terrorists, who they can't control. The same thing will be said about past attacks on Iraqis, that they were all done by foreigners, which means that all Sunni insurgents get full pardons.

Since guerrillas don't have to keep their promises, the only parts of the deal that mean anything are the ones that the governments promise, including the UN specified US troop withdrawal schedule. As the Bush administration and generals have been saying all along, once a withdrawal date has been set, the terrorists can just run the clock out. They'll turn in some old weapons as part of the feigned surrender, put on a uniform, and continue the terrorism.

6/23/2006 03:05:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

It seems like amnesty for warfare against foreign troops will be the biggest issue in Western countries, but it really should be the smallest, none at all. Attacks against uniformed foreign invaders are war, not terrorism. What crime would the Iraqis be charged with? Saddam Hussein was their commander in chief and he ordered their army to resist the invasion. Citizens have the general right to resist foreign invasion. I don't think the elected Iraqi governments have ever passed a law making "resistance" to foreign troops a crime, and laws passed by an unelected occupation government would be meaningless.

Sure people could try to come up with some hair splitting arguments about war crimes, and US civilians who weren't part of the military effort. The reality though is that when someone invades a country the only way they can get justice is with the gun. On our way out of there we should take whatever justice we think is necessary, then forget about it.

6/23/2006 03:31:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

And the killing of Zarqawi may be part of the long list of things which were part of the deal. That would explain why it came on the same day the cabinet deal was announced. The Sunni Resistance may have given up his location as part of the deal, to show their bona fide ability to get rid of the non-Iraqi resistance if they want.

6/23/2006 03:44:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

This article from the Washington Post gives a different, softer definition of amnesty, and shows that it is still being discussed.

With that said, punishing every Iraqi who killed a US citizen is not practical, since there was no law against it. Even if a new law is invented now, it would be unfair to apply it retroactively to the past four years.

(free registration required)

Earlier proposals suggested offering pardons to Iraqis who have attacked U.S. troops but not to those who attacked Iraqis, an idea the U.S. Senate strongly denounced. The new plan does not make that distinction, Iraqi officials said.

"It says that the government will issue an amnesty for all those who have not committed crimes against the people of Iraq and the friends of Iraq," said Deputy Prime Minister Barham Saleh, an ethnic Kurd from President Jalal Talabani's Patriotic Union of Kurdistan. "Those who attack U.S. forces are not immune from legal consequences. An attack on Iraqi forces or multinational forces are seen legally . . . as the same thing from the perspective of the government."

6/23/2006 04:20:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

This has nothing to do with Iran or Iraq except in a tangental manner but a metaphor for unintended consequences of actions even when done for the best of reasons:

BBC, 23 June 2006
Wind Farm 'Hits Eagle Numbers'

"The white-tailed eagle is one of Europe's largest birds of prey
Wind farm turbine blades are killing a key population of Europe's largest bird of prey, UK wildlife campaigners warn.
The RSPB says nine white-tailed eagles have been killed on the Smola islands off the Norwegian coast in 10 months, including all of last year's chicks.

Chick numbers at the species' former stronghold have plummeted since the wind farm was built, with breeding pairs at the site down from 19 to one.

Scientists fear wind farms planned elsewhere could also harm birds.

And there are fears Britain's small population of the birds could be adversely affected."

6/23/2006 04:29:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

It's that Maliki Plan, folks.
Endorsed by Mr Bush.
US out of Iraq by '07, '08 at the latest.
No basing rights, negotoiations for that not yet announced. Mr Bush has said he will not discuss Basing, that's up to his replacement. Heard him say it, myself, at a Press conference a month or so ago.

The announced Maliki Plan's "date certain",
November '07.
It's just that the folks that are making the decisions about US troop deployments are not in Washington, nor US citizens.

The enemy seems to have just been Baathist Sunni all along. They are standing down. Mr al-Sadr and his crew, pardon and amnesty for killing US Marines, already recieved.

Score one for the Mahdi Army.
See ya'll on the beach.

6/23/2006 05:39:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/23/2006 06:07:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

> It's just that the folks that are making the decisions about US troop deployments are not in Washington, nor US citizens.

That's partially true in any democracy. While we can decide to leave their soil any time we want without negotiations, unless we are willing to invade an elected country we have to leave when they say.

> Mr al-Sadr and his crew, pardon and amnesty for killing US Marines, already recieved.

There is nothing to pardon, no amnesty to give. Since we invaded Iraq four years ago there has been no government, no law, no courts. In a state of anarchy there are no laws to break, and the only punishment is violent retaliation.

6/23/2006 06:09:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

The first thing that comes to my mind is:

If the Sunni opposition groups "sign" a peace deal then they will be on our side against the Iranians and probably against the simple crimminals as well. Which they likely would prefer, anyway - Like some of the Italians were on our side after they surrendered in 1943.

"More complex" indeed!

6/23/2006 06:11:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

And, w.w. since the US does not engage in "violent retaliation", Mr al-Sadr was pardoned by Mr Bush, his Generals and their War Policies.

Folks that take up arms against the US, that get to walk away. They are Pardoned.
We've begged their pardron, as well.

May be the "right" thing to do, or not.
It is what we've done, though.

6/23/2006 06:15:00 AM  
Blogger Reocon said...

Iranian "surrogates" in Iraq? A simple exercise in analysis:
1) List the Shi'a political parties that compose the GOVERNING coalition known as the United Iraqi Alliance (UIA). With a little help from the internet, find out either which party was sheltered by Iran during the Iran-Iraq War or is currently funded by Iran. Research Moqtada al-Sadr's recent vist to Ahmaidnejad.
2) Determine what percentage of the vote the UIA drew among the purple-fingered and pious.
3) Ignore all the above and declare that "victory" is just around the corner (again).

6/23/2006 06:23:00 AM  
Blogger Reocon said...

Desert Rat:
"And, w.w. since the US does not engage in "violent retaliation", Mr al-Sadr was pardoned by Mr Bush, his Generals and their War Policies."

Exactly. We have been dedicated, since January, to building up a government that includes the turbaned toadies of Moqtada al-Sadr. Explain that one to the American families who lost brave soldiers to "quelling" Sadr's two uprisings. At some point Americans are going to have to look beyond establishing a monopoly of violence in Iraq and ask just who we are establishing that monopoly for. "Iran in Iraq" gives a hint.

6/23/2006 06:28:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

It just goes to prove what Mr Bush has been saying, all along.

It is not Islam that is the Enemy.

Also it would appear that...
It is not Iran, as there is no War Authorization with Iran, nor any "hot pursuit" combat, there.

It is not radical Islam that is the enemy, or Mr al-Sadr would be dead and many Mosques shuttered.

It is not Iranian surrogates that are the Enemy, or Mr al-Sadr would be dead, the Shia militias disbanded or destroyed.

It is not those that engaged US troops in combat, or Mr al-Sadr would be dead.

That is the great thing about Iraq,
the US has no Enemies there,
only Allies.
Even if they do not percieve it, yet

6/23/2006 06:37:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Syria trains and equips the Sunni resistance while Iran does the same for the Shiite insurgents. It seems to just even out to me. During the first two years the Sunnis were the only ones fighting Guerrilla style, and that prevented the government from forming, the economy from healing, and caused US, Kurd, and Shiite deaths.

IMO the only way to have a peaceful Iraq is for each of the three groups to be armed and know they can't defeat the others militarily, either conventional or guerrilla style.

6/23/2006 06:40:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

You may well be right.
But you are also way off the prescribed "Course".

Unity is the word for '06.

Learn to live with it.

6/23/2006 06:53:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

along with Unity there is

6/23/2006 06:54:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

al-Sadr is temporarily alive, protected by Sistani. Right now he is useful to us, as someone who can fight Sunnis guerilla-style. Things could change, like if Sistani dies or al-Sadr breaks his end of the deal. The US wasn't in position to fight both Sunni and Shiite resistance, especially when it looked like the entire Shiite population might join in. We might be able to clean up al-Sadr and other loose ends on the way out, when there is nothing to loose.

6/23/2006 06:56:00 AM  
Blogger Greg said...

With all this "complexity" I wish to make a very simple comment:

I LOVE this blog!

6/23/2006 07:01:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If, w.w., Armies are really logistic trains, which is a general truism, then...

We are already "on the way out".
As reported by AP Correspondent Ryan Lenz, who was embedded with the U.S. Army Field Sustainment Brigade, which oversees the Army's military equipment in Iraq.
Here in the San Diego Union- Tribune.

The trucks are already leaving Iraq, the troops, they are not far behind.

As they say in crime, follow the money.
In Iraq, follow the Humvees,
all the way home.

6/23/2006 07:10:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

Desert Rat 06:37:

Are you sure you are not Joseph Heller?

6/23/2006 07:13:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

We are all like Mr al-Sadr, w.w., in that regard.

"temporarily alive"

as are we all.

6/23/2006 07:17:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I believe 2164, that Mr Heller is no longer "temporarily alive".

6/23/2006 07:21:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/23/2006 07:49:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

It looks like the Humvee will be the headline "loss" vehicle of choice for Iraq, that the helicopter once was for Viet Nam. There were many additional air losses and clearly the US has made astounding improvements in air protection. It is interesting to look at total US air losses during the Viet Nam campaign.

United States Air Force

A-1 Skyraider-- --191 total, 150 in combat
A-7 Corsair II-- (6)
A-26 Invader-- (22)
A-37 Dragonfly-- (22)
AC-47 Spooky-- --19 total, 17 in combat
AC-119 Shadow/Stinger-- --6 total, 2 in combat
AC-130 Spectre-- --6 total, all combat
B-52 Stratofortress-- --30 total, 18 in combat
B-57 Canberra-- --56 total, 38 in combat
B-66 Destroyer-- (27)
C-7 Caribou-- (20)
C-47 Skytrain-- (21)
C-123 Provider-- --53 total, 21 in combat
C-130 Hercules-- --55 total, 34 in combat
C-141 Starlifter-- (2)
EB-66 Destroyer (14)
EC-121 Bat Cat-- (2)
F-4 Phantom II-- --445 total, 382 in combat
F-5 Freedom Fighter-- (9)
F-100 Super Sabre-- --243 total, 198 in combat
F-102 Delta Dagger-- (14)
F-104 Starfighter-- (14)
F-105 Thunderchief-- --397 total, 334 in combat
F-111 "Aardvark"-- --10 total, 6 in combat
HU-16 Albatross-- (2)
KB-50 Superfortress-- (1)
KC-135 Stratotanker-- (3)
O-1 Bird Dog-- --172 total, 122 in combat
O-2 Skymaster-- --104 total, 82 in combat
OV-10 Bronco-- --63 total, 47 in combat
QU-22-- (9)
RF-4 Phantom-- --83 total, 76 in combat
RF-101 Voodoo-- --39 total, 33 in combat
SR-71 Blackbird-- --2, 0 combat
T-28 Trojan-- (23)
U-2 "Dragon Lady"-- (1)
U-3 Blue Canoe-- (1)
U-6 Beaver-- (1)
U-10 Courier-- (1)
Source: Air Force Magazine, Vol.87, No. 9, September 2004, P.58, "The Vietnam War Almanac," with attribution to USAF Operations Report, Nov. 30, 1973

United States Navy

A-1 Skyraider --65 total, 48 in combat
A-3 Skywarrior --7 total, 2 in combat
A-4 Skyhawk --282 total, 195 in combat
A-5 Vigilante (7) --0 in combat
A-6 Intruder --62 total, 51 in combat
A-7 Corsair --100 total, 55 in combat
C-1 Trader --4 total, 0 in combat
C-2 Greyhound --1 total, 0 in combat
C-47 Skytrain (1)
E-1 Tracer --3 total, 0 in combat
E-2 Hawkeye --2 total, 0 in combat
EA-1 Skyraider --4 total, 1 in combat
EC-121 Warning Star (1?)
F-4 Phantom --138 total, 75 in combat
F-8 Crusader --118 total, 57 in combat
OV-10 Bronco (7)
P-2 Neptune (4)
P-3 Orion (2)
RA-5 Vigilante --26 total, 18 in combat
RF-8 Crusader --29 total, 19 in combat
S-2 Tracker --4 total, 2 in combat
Source: hand tabulation of individual loss entries by date and aircraft carrier, June 7, 1964-August 15, 1973, carrier air wings only, recorded in Tonkin Gulf Yacht Club, René J. Francillon (1988)

United States Marine Corps

A-4 Skyhawk 81
A-6 Intruder 25
C-117 Skytrain 2
EA-6 Prowler 2
EF-10 Skynight 5
F-4 Phantom 98
F-8 Crusader 21
KC-130 Hercules 4
O-1 Bird Dog 7
OV-10 Bronco 10
RF-4 Phantom 4
RF-8 Crusader 1
TA-4 Skyhawk 10
TF-9 Cougar 1

6/23/2006 07:51:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

In addition the helicopter losses in Viet Nam were over 4500 with over half in combat.

6/23/2006 07:58:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Iraq as 'Nam does not make the cut, does it?

These Baathist Sunni enemies are none to good, nor equipped.

Not even a SAM-7 in the inventory.
Nor a Mig, nor even a single field gun, it seems.
No AA, not even a truck mounted quad 50 is left to use against US.

Yet these Baathist have fought US to a draw, a negotiated settlement, while their strongholds, like Ramadi, Haditha and Tikrit still stand.

The US, a tiger to be feared, that's for sure. As the Palistinians have learned, cutbacks in US AID money can be painful.

6/23/2006 07:59:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

The numbers are startling DR and put things in quite a different perspective.

6/23/2006 08:10:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

The Sunnis lost big time. They used to be the undisputed rulers of all of Iraq. That's gone and its not coming back. Now they're just a 20% minority in a democracy.

6/23/2006 08:11:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

10-4 C4

6/23/2006 08:19:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The image of the Baathist Sunni are of little concern, w.w.
It is the image of the US that is paramount.

When this is how our Enemies are dealt with"


A schedule for coalition forces to withdraw

General amnesty for prisoners “who have not shed innocent Iraqis’ blood”

A halt to “anti-terrorist operations” by coalition forces in insurgent areas

A review of the process of de-Baathification and of financial compensation to sacked civil servants from the Saddam regime

If a negotiated settlement is the aim, then these concessions are on target. As we excelerate our withdrawl, to fulfill the "Peace", I am sure the Iranians will thank US.

But where has all the talk of the soon to be expanded war gone?
The need to threaten Iran with our troop strength in Iraq?

Now, when the reality has become all to clear, we have already begun to pull out of Iraq.

6/23/2006 08:26:00 AM  
Blogger John Aristides said...

Okay, this is using something I've been working on since Wretchard's Fourth Generation post. It's incomplete but it pertinent enough to this topic to be stated in brief.

If Iranian Spec Op Forces are funding, training, and directing disparate Shia groups to disturb, frustrate, and attack the Iraqi Government and Coalition forces, the only way we are going to successfully dismantle this network is by focusing on Iran. Let me explain.

Think of the Iran problem as a network, each node an actor, and each connection some information that is transmitted from one node to the other (this can be logistical, directional, or psychological information and coordination). For each node, there are k connections to other nodes. Further, for each node there is an l clustering coefficient (a clustering coefficient describes how many of your "connections" are connected to each other--basically, a high clustering coefficient describes a modular node).

The type of network we are dealing is a non-random, scale-free modular network with a power-law distribution for k. Without going too far into it, in this type of network the entire system is supported by a few hubs (high k value node). The internet is a prime example of this, as is our neurological network. A scale-free network is robust against random error: remove a node at random, and the network can survive an incredibly high number of outages. However, these networks have a massive Achilles' Heel: they are quite vulnerable to a targeted, systematic attack on their hubs.

In the Iranian network, the hubs are Iranian spec ops groups. This is clear if you think about it. The Iranians are connected to a large amount of disparate groups (high k value), and the groups they are connected to are not themselves connected to each other (they have a low l value). That is the classic definition of a hub.

With this type of network, choosing to focus one's energy on nodes with low k values and high clustering coefficients is a recipe for defeat. Even removing several mid-level nodes is not enough to dismantle the network. Some parts that are not rounded up will drift away and reconnect. Other parts that are eliminated will regenerate elsewhere. We could eliminate 80% of the nodes and still be facing a functional network.

If we want to truly kill this organism, we need to strike at the source--the backbone of the network--and the core functions that allow it to survive. The core functions here, the functions that must always be 'on' for the network to exist, are the Iranian Spec Ops and the Iranian Government's willingness to use them. So long as the Iranians supply moral and logistical support, we will not be able to bring this thing under control. They must be our target.

How we do that, I'm not sure, but the paradigm of progress is there. Interdicting the Spec Ops forces would be incredibly difficult, I would imagine. Bombing Iran even more so. But if we are serious about winning in Iraq, and Iran is bent on seeing us lose, then our only chance of success is to face East and start pruning.

6/23/2006 08:31:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I do agree, aristide.

Another analogy would be a neighbor's hedge that grows over our mutal fence.
While it is true the semi annual trimming of his plants, growing on my side of the fence, will never solve the problem. Ultimately the removal of the hedge would be required to do that.
It does not mean that I should stop cutting the hedge back, as it grows into my yard.
No matter the difficulty

6/23/2006 08:41:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...


I guess I don't understand what you want. Maybe it would help if you explained it, your ideal conclusion to the war.

For the reasons I explained earlier, something like this is really the only good and expected outcome I can imagine from the invasion of Iraq. The good outcome is that Iraq is a democracy, as the Sunnis do not and will not rule by force; Iraqis rule the country, not foreign Al Qaeda; weapons of mass destruction have been checked for and destroyed.

This was not what the Sunnis wanted. They wanted the US to immediately collapse, the new government to never be formed, and the old Baathist regime take over again.

Of the things you have mentioned:
I see amnesty as being the only possible solution. Iraq is lawless, so there is no law to charge Sunnis with. It would be impossible to go through the death of every US soldier in an Iraqi courtroom, calling witnesses and searching for evidence in order to reach some sort of verdict. The law of the battle field is to take revenge there. There are a lot of Iraqi and foreign terrorists in hell because they attacked our forces and some of their comrades will be joining them soon.

As far as compensation for Baathists go, that's an internal Iraqi issue. Supposedly many had to join the party or die, or not be able to get a job, so excluding all of them may have been a mistake.

Eventually we have to stop fighting and leave. It's not our country. In a lot of ways I don't care how the three groups work things out. We gave them a democracy, the whole world has seen that. If they choose civil war or partitioning, that's their choice and their problem.

6/23/2006 09:11:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Many here will enjoy Jack Kelly's farewell to Mr Rather.
Mr Kelly describes Tet and how the reporting of it had an impact on that War. He compares the MSM influence of that era to today's.

It is posted at Real Clear Politics "Iraq, Vietnam, the MSM & Dan Rather"

It is extra interesting as a timetable for withdrawl is on the table in Iraq, despite both Mr Bush's and Sense of the Senate's desire for there not to be a schedule.

Mr Maliki knows best, I guess.

6/23/2006 09:13:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

What would I have seen for the post invasion Iraq, or where would I go from here?

In both the long and short terms I would have supported more programs that were disapproved of at Camp Taji. I would have integrated the Iraqis with the US troops, not segregated them.

I would have increased US presence in each ISF unit. Standing up the ISF quicker. I would have begun to withdraw conventional US forces a year or more ago.

I would have created a ruling triumverate of Mr Talabani, Mr Allawi & Mr Chilabi that would have ruled until the War was over and the US had withdrawn.

Then democracy could have been installed, from the bottom up, not the top down.

There are many could of's, should of's and would of's. Most of these things are not said in hindsight, but have been advocated for over a year and some months.

Where we are today is empowering the Iranian surrogates in Iraq. That is a fact. It may or may not play out well in the end.

Depends upon who the enemy really is, in these Mohammedan Wars.

It was Wahhabists that attacked the US on 9/11/01. There are few of those in Iran, nor in the Mahdi Army. There are many in the KSA, though. As well as Pakistan.

6/23/2006 09:33:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

It is possible too that some US forces will remain, perhaps with basing rights. A schedule could have on the last line that 30,000 US troops remain indefinitely.

Christian Science Monitor interviewed a Shiite insurgent leader who said that "the bulk" of American forces will leave.

Whatever is decided now, as a sovereign country they could change their minds and throw us out later anyway, as Uzbekistan (?) recently did. That's the price of setting up free countries.

6/23/2006 09:41:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

We did not "set up" Uzbeckistan, nor is it "free".

That analogy is none to good.

Panama or Subic Bay would have been better.

Countries we did "set up" and that we did later depart, when asked.
In both cases there were schedules and timelines.

Panama, we had to go back once and uninstall the government, but things are on track now.

6/23/2006 09:51:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

According to this Reuters article, some of the things being published about the deal are untrue, some of the things mentioned in the article this thread is about.

The Iraqi government will present a national reconciliation plan to parliament Sunday that would grant some insurgents amnesty and ask for approval of a series of steps for Iraqis to take over security from U.S. troops, according to a key politician and a draft of the document.

A draft of the 28-point proposal by Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki contains an updated version of a sequence of moves — with no specific dates — preparing Iraqi forces to assume control of national security.

The U.S.-led coalition wants to hand over security in certain regions while withdrawing to larger regional bases in case of emergency. A final stage would involve the drawdown of U.S. troops from those bases.

"There is no finite and U.N.-approved timeline for the withdrawal of foreign troops," said Kurdish politician Mahmoud Othman, a close ally of President Jalal Talabani, who was to present the plan.

The plan proposes a general pardon for thousands of prisoners who are determined not to have committed "crimes and clear terrorist actions."

The government already has been pardoning groups of such prisoners and releasing them by the hundreds in recent months.

The plan promises to open a review of the country's new constitution to address demands made by Sunni Arabs, while attempting to find a way to eradicate sectarian militias. It also pledges to shield the crucial Defense and Interior ministries from outside political influence.

The early draft obtained by The Associated Press called for a joint stand by Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds on a series of critical issues, before drawing up more detailed proposals. It was not clear what progress had been made on that front, including a call for a "candid and clear stand" by all sides on policy toward supporters of former President

Saddam Hussein and his outlawed Baath party.

The plan did not include a call for halting "anti-terrorist" operations by coalition forces, Othman said, contradicting some published reports.

Othman said committees would be formed to discuss the amnesty plans and the problem of dealing with members of the once-ruling Baath Party. He stressed that those proposals remained on the drawing board.

"It is so hard to implement this package in a proper way," he said. "It's so hard to bring all parties together on this package."

White House spokesman Tony Snow said June 18 that "the prime minister's made it clear that he's not going to grant amnesty to anybody with blood on their hands, and I'll let him define that."

The plan was to be presented last week, but al-Maliki delayed the announcement because of disagreements among

Iraq's ethnic and sectarian groups.

6/23/2006 10:03:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

The prior article was from, not Reuters: "Amnesty may be part of Iraq reconciliation "

6/23/2006 10:10:00 AM  
Blogger Reocon said...

Wretchard said:
"There should be no amnesty for anyone who has killed an American. None."

Wouldn't that be nice. And why stop at amnesty, shouldn't we push the principle to apply to those holding political office in Iraq? Wretchard, do you think the zero tolerance policy that you advocate should apply to elected members of the current government like those in Saleh al-Mutlak's Iraqi National Dialogue Front or Sadr's party in the UIA? What about Al-Fadhila?

I think a good follow up post to "Iran in Iraq" should dare to examine the allegiances and ethos of Sunni and Shiite parties that make up the government we're spending blood and treasure to defend.

6/23/2006 10:18:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

So, w.w., which reporting is most accurate, The Times of London or Reuters?

That is the trouble with the MSM, they can't keep the storyline straight.

28 pages to be debated, then offered as a Peace Plan. Which will then be negotiated further.

All the while "A halt to “anti-terrorist operations” by coalition forces in insurgent areas" will be in effect.

The "War" will be over.
Iraq left to the Iraqis.

The US withdrawl under way.

6/23/2006 10:19:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Who supplied it to yahoo, w.w.?

What's the bloodline of that srory?

Judge it's verasity, how?

6/23/2006 10:23:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Many British tabloid type news papers are unreliable, so I don't trust them.

The AP article I posted said their source is "Kurdish politician Mahmoud Othman, a close ally of President Jalal Talabani, who was to present the plan."

6/23/2006 10:27:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Many things from the British article are unbelievable, like halting anti-terror operations. No country ever stops anti-terrorist activities. That's so bizarre that it sounds almost like satire.

There is a article which also disagrees, "Iraq Refines Its Amnesty Plan".

6/23/2006 10:31:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The money line is
" by coalition forces ", not that all operations would stop.
Just that US operations would stop.

More than reasonable, as a precondition to negotiation and reconciliation.
The US Command would like nothing better. It what they are trying to achieve, in Camp Taji, for example.

The Times of London is many things, but no tabloid, w.w.

6/23/2006 10:39:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

There is no way that the US would leave our troops there as sitting ducks without fighting back. The Times article is clearly way, way off as the other articles indicate. The other articles also say this is a series of steps, not something that happens all at once.

6/23/2006 10:44:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If Haditha is not patrolled by coalition troops, they will not be attacked.

If Ramadi is left to the Iraqi to patrol, our troops are safer. The Marine commander there in Ramadi, a Captain, told his men not to return fire if the streets were crowded.
In Taji the orders were to take fire from snipers and not return it, nor take out the sniper's support system. In fact when the support system was removed, that led to officers being relieved and an subsequent Iraqi officer "strike".

US forces are often ordered to be "sitting ducks" as you say.
No change there w.w.

6/23/2006 11:00:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Speaking of Kuwait, habu, they are having Elections soon. They're going to allow women to vote and even run for office.

So there you go, 15 plus years later, women get to vote.

Success of a sort

6/23/2006 11:32:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Here's the byline to article I posted above:

Amnesty may be part of Iraq reconciliation
By QASSIM ABDUL-ZAHRA, Associated Press Writer

Associated Press writer Sinan Salaheddin in Baghdad contributed to this report.

6/23/2006 12:16:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Sucess, you want sucess?
Compare and contrast the wartime exploits of Joe and John, vs Ted.
Noble Brown Fingers
Amnesty for the New York Times
Amnesty for 400,000 New Arrivals/yr
Amnesty for Clintonista leaking traitors
Good Will for All,
A New Tone of Sorts.

6/23/2006 12:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Correction for ww:
"That's so bizarre that it sounds almost like Sartre"

6/23/2006 12:37:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

10:19 AM At least JFK2 doesn't get his way.
Fire up the booster club.

6/23/2006 12:40:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

but not a dimes worth of differences between the "Plans".

Mr Maliki and his Team have been talkin' '07 & '08 for months, now.

Mr Kerry set a "date",
Mr Maliki set a "circumstance",
they'll play the same way.
November '07 with some fudge time, six months or so.

Takes the War in Iraq out of the '08 US elections.
Puts the hunt for Osama above the fold.

6/23/2006 12:47:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

A Democrat timetable would
"send a signal."
No sending needed this way.
Karzai asks to please hunt where he might be found.
Strange Duck.

6/23/2006 01:11:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

At 8:31 the challenge was laid out.
It is as true for the Afghan - Pakistan area as it is for Iraq & Iran.

We can continue to lop off the branches, but the root is on the other side of the fence.

Funny how we respect the sanctity Pakistan's borders more than we do our own.

6/23/2006 01:19:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Mexicans make better workers.
Gives "lazy American" low income workers more of a "challenge."
Builds Character.

6/23/2006 01:23:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

If we only had an Army of Aristides, we could immobilize them while they are figuring out what we were up to.
Meanwhile, install high-bandwidth MTV-enabled internet access throughout Tehran while they're in a daze.

6/23/2006 01:28:00 PM  
Blogger Alexis said...

habu_1 11:02

Well, there was once a great superpower led by men who believed in fighting against an evil regime. However, the nation was tired, it had fought a war a generation earlier to a humiliating stalemate, had declining reserves of youth to man the armies, and had had its military cut in the past decade. The war it was fighting seemed pointless to many, and the enemy didn't seem anywhere close to being defeated. It had a legacy of bitter partisan politics based on invective and hatred of the leaders of the Left or the Right. Defeatism was rampant. Many people from the older generations were convinced that war didn't solve anything, and social malaise was the order of the day.

Yes, it was a great power, but one sharp defeat would bring it down to its knees.

The nation I am referring to is France in 1940.

6/23/2006 01:33:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Here's an updated version of the plan, which does not require the US to abandon Iraq. This matches what Rumsfeld said in a press conference yesterday, that as time passes and the Iraq Army proves itself, the US Forces gradually move to more distant bases, from which they can still respond in Iraq if needed. Kuwait is currently being used for this purpose, and was mentioned.

Iraqis call state of emergency in Baghdad By KIM GAMEL, Associated Press Writer
26 minutes ago

On the political front, a key politician said the Iraqi government will present a 28-point national reconciliation plan to parliament Sunday that would grant some insurgents amnesty and ask for approval of a series of steps for Iraqis to take over security from U.S. troops.

Kurdish politician Mahmoud Othman said the plan also would include a timeline for preparing Iraqi forces to take over security from U.S. forces.

That would fit with the overall U.S.-led coalition strategy to transfer security to Iraqi forces in certain regions while withdrawing to larger regional bases to stand ready to help in case of emergency. A final stage would involve the drawdown of U.S. troops from those bases.

"There is no finite and U.N.-approved timeline for the withdrawal of foreign troops, but there is a timeline to accomplish the readiness of Iraqi security forces to take over security in the country," Othman said.


6/23/2006 01:54:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/23/2006 01:58:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

In yesterday's press conference Rumsfeld and General Clark specifically said that Maliki's plan was not setting a date certain for US withdrawal from Iraq or the region. In fact in the last question of the press conference Clark said in no uncertain terms that would be a mistake.

Instead they said, Maliki's plan, the one being negotiated with all groups, sets dates when the Iraqi forces to be able to take over security duties.

6/23/2006 02:04:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

"...Kurdish politician Mahmoud Othman said the plan also would include a timeline for preparing Iraqi forces to take over security from U.S. forces.
... but
there is a timeline to accomplish the readiness of Iraqi security forces to take over security in the country,"
Othman said. ..."

When is a timeline not a timeline, or a schedule not a schedule?
Tne Prime Minister and the Iraqi NSA have been clear and concise in the schedule outlines. November '07 is the target, add six months for perpetual tardiness and there you'll have it.
As outlined in the Bush endorsed Maliki Plan, circumstances for complete handover to be ready by November '07. March '08 at the latest.
Or Mr Maliki & his Government will be considered a failure by his people.

6/23/2006 02:16:00 PM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

The Homeboy jihadis stepping up for AQ is a scary thing. It puts a whole new meaning to the Department of Home Land Security.

6/23/2006 02:19:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Tony explains:
"The White House press secretary, Tony Snow, said Mr. Mineta was leaving
"because he wanted to.
But his legacy of excusing the suspect while harassing the citizenry remains.

6/23/2006 02:20:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If there is no security mission for coalition troops, why would they stay?

6/23/2006 02:20:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Iraqi forces taking over security from U.S. forces does not equal US forces leaving Iraq or the region. Absolutely not. That is just one early step of the plan.

When a province is ready for Iraqi control, all foreign forces move to other parts of Iraq. This will happen by the end of July for the first province, Muthanna, according to the DOD.

Eventually (a reduced number of) foreign troops will only be stationed in regional bases, able to respond to Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, etc. as needed.

I don't see a problem with this plan. No one ever said that the US would continue patrolling every inch of Iraq by itself for the rest of eternity, and I see no wisdom in doing that.

6/23/2006 02:26:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Now in NYCity subways, they'll have cause to search every person of African descent. They constitute a "known threat" now.

May have bomb in that backpack, never can tell, unless we look.

How many black people are there in the Americas?
Lots more than Arabs, no?
No telling signs of Mohammedism, either, are there?
Have to keep checking 'em all, over and over again. Until we get to the root of the problem.

No matter the difficulty.

6/23/2006 02:27:00 PM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

Good article from BBC. Two real comforting stats: "Confidence in the al-Qaeda leader had also fallen in Pakistan, where 38% of people expressed some confidence in him, down from 51%.

However 61% of Nigerian Muslims had at least some confidence in bin Laden, a sharp rise from 44% in May 2003."

Muslims and Al-Qaeda

..."In one of the survey's most striking findings, majorities in Indonesia, Turkey, Egypt, and Jordan said they did not believe Arabs carried out the attacks on the US on 11 September 2001.


The report says this attitude is not limited to Muslims in Muslim-dominated countries - 56% of British Muslims said the same.

The survey cited a dramatic drop in support for Osama Bin Laden in Jordan as a sign of falling support for terrorism in Muslim countries.

Less than 1% of respondents in the country - hit by triple hotel bombings last November - expressed confidence in Bin Laden, down from a quarter last year.

6/23/2006 02:29:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

> D.R. > If there is no security mission for coalition troops, why would they stay?

The same reason we stay in other countries like South Korea and Japan who are fully capable of handling their own basic security needs. The US forces act as "trip wires" which if another country invades and attacks, has basically attacked the US itself. The US forces can use our high power intelligence monitoring and other equipment to gather data benefiting both the US and host country.

6/23/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/23/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Call when there is a signed lease & status of forces agreement, or at least negotiations for one.
'Til then, there is no agreement,
so as you've mentioned previously.
Regardless of the "Plan"
It's up to the Iraqis.

6/23/2006 02:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

read one lady's naked torso with an arrow pointing down to the presidential material in question. What a bleak comment on the bitter divisions in our society that even so all-American a tradition as nude bicycling down Main Street should now be so nakedly partisan.

It's as if the republic itself is now divided into a red buttock and a blue buttock permanently cleaved by the bicycle seat of war.
- Steyn

6/23/2006 02:37:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

And whom are we "trip wiring" in Iraq?
KSA or Jordan?
The Turks, perhaps.
There is no external threat to Iraq.
Not from overt invasion, meanwhile our conventional force has already proven inadequate against covert ops in the country.
Baghdad, Taji, Haditha, Tikrit & Ramadi stand today as proof.

As does Basra, now.

6/23/2006 02:37:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

> There is no external threat to Iraq.

Really? If we weren't there, there is no chance that Iran would invade and occupy at least the Shiite part of Iraq? That Turkey wouldn't fight with the Kurds? Given that there was an Iran Iraq war I wouldn't be so sure. Iraq is just beginning to rebuild their army so they would be easy pickings for any decent sized country at this point.

6/23/2006 02:40:00 PM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

That would keep me awake at night wondering who would attack Iraq. Imagine having to share the spoils of that war.

6/23/2006 02:43:00 PM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

GWB could not be so lucky as to have someone else attack Iraq could he?

6/23/2006 02:45:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Some people think Iraq's oil is pretty valuable. In fact the Iraqi groups are fighting amongst themselves for control of the oil. The Sunnis want constitutional changes to make sure they get some oil moneys and the Kurds & Shiites both want Kirkuk's oil.

6/23/2006 02:58:00 PM  
Blogger Papa Ray said...

I feel like a prediction today. Lets all meet here at this blog, the day after the coming U.S. Presidental election and see how close to right I am.

I predict all of these to be true (or very close)that day:

The U.S. will have at least two Megabases in Iraq, complete with extended runways, bunkers and hangers.

NATO will have a base there also, not quite so large and luxurious.

There will still be "some" U.S. troops in Kuwait.

The U.S. Embassy compound will be completed, even bigger and better than planned.

The UN compound will be fit for the would be kings that occupy it.

The three major factions in Iraq will still be killing each other, but it will be no worse than living in LA or Houston.

Iran will have the bomb, maybe several and will still be threating to wipe Israel off the map, but seems content now that they are the big boy on the block.

The discontent in Saudi Arabia will be at it's peak with rumors that they will have to have the UN or the US come in to prevent the overthrow of the Kingdom.

Pakistan will have become the center of the terrorists threat (in the ME) and growing problems and discontent with the U.S. and the President threaten more each passing month.

Afghanisn will still be the wild west training area for the worlds terrorists. We will have killed thousands upon thousands while NATO forces have lost at least 2000 soldiers.

That's all I can think of now. It's time for my nap anyway.

Feel free to add your own predictions. This could be interesting and very educational.

Till then.

Papa Ray
West Texas

6/23/2006 03:01:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

And as you've said, let 'em have at it.

If Turkey wants more Kurds, why would we stop them from their goal?

Iraqi internal strife, it is our concern or not, w.w.
Mr Bush thinks it is, you've been all over the field. War or even threat of war is not in the cards.

Or the Humvees would not be coming back.
Logistics tell the tale.
More today than ever.

I would not have one wounded US troop as part of a price for the future of Kirkuk's oil.
Which ever local faction the Iraqi Federal government chooses to favor, that's democracy or civil war, baby.

6/23/2006 03:10:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

I think Iraq is like any other country we liberated. If the people's elected government wants us to be their ally, then we should take them up on it. If not, we respect their freedom and walk away.

6/23/2006 03:15:00 PM  
Blogger John Aristides said...

Heh, yes, well I suppose it's not very succinct, at that.

It's very difficult to describe the reasons why we should attack the hubs of the network without getting into the technical jargon of network complexity. Suffice it to say that there is a lot of excellent literature on the subject (i.e. Center for Complex Network Research). The study of social networks and their dynamics is of particular interest here.

To give an example: in Sweden, a study was done to determine how STD's were transmitted in a society. A survey was taken asking a lot of people how many sexual partners they had had in their lifetimes. As you might imagine, most people had between 1 and 10, some had 10-20, and some even more than that. A small few actually had 1000+ sexual "connections" in their lifetimes.

If you graph this data, using people as nodes and connecting the nodes if those two people had sex, you would see the same type of phenomenon that I discusses above (scale-free network with power law distribution of 'k'). Most "nodes" would have between 1-10 connections, but a small few would have 1000+. These small few are the hubs.

The research concluded that the smartest way to battle STD's would be to attack those hubs, because those hubs are the connections to different groups and different people that otherwise would not be brought into the network of STD transmission. In essence, the hyper-promiscuous were the catalyst that turned a local infection into a city-wide epidemic.

Social networks are fluid and organic, but to continue to function as a network they are vulnerable at the core. If you want to destroy them, that is where you strike.

6/23/2006 04:15:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

yes habu,
come to the banana republics
come to the tropical sun

Property rights are about the same,
it's yours 'til it's not.

6/23/2006 04:45:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"in dis here case i done didn't node what i node or not node.
so i just sat me down and ate me a mess a *bowled* peenuts wit sum possum dip i node dats good eat'in.
...and just how bovine flatulence *affects* the ozone.

6/23/2006 06:28:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Put Kelo to good use while it's around:
Raze the Capital and replace it with an amusement park based on a Replica of El Toro.

6/23/2006 06:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Keep us up to date with your daughter's success in teaching you how to paste a "url" into a post this weekend.
Curious minds want to know.

6/23/2006 06:43:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Maybe we should check out Powerline:
They were on Hewitt, wonder why admin does not go after Bill.
Said what he leaked is more important than the China spy guy who is being prosecuted.
Both are constitutional lawyers, of course.
No vetos, no prosecution of traitors, no enemies, no hard feelings, no borders, no country...
No Balls, that's for d... sure.

6/23/2006 07:28:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"In other words, if any story can colorably create the impression that this administration -- this Republican administration -- is abusing information on citizens, then the "public interest" in the Times making that argument overrides all other considerations of protecting the life and limb of those same citizens.

It makes me slightly sick to think of the administration pleading with left-wing editors, who fear the president more than they fear terrorists, to act in a manner that enables the government to protect public safety. Perhaps the day will come when Keller is pleading with the government for a favorable plea bargain.
I doubt it, though.

More importantly, so does Keller.
- Paul at Powerline

6/23/2006 07:35:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

At least if we had a real eunich for president, he could sing for us.
Phoney times:
Feminized Males stand in for real Eunichs.

6/23/2006 07:39:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Rep. J.D. Hayworth (R-AZ)
Facing the illegals invasion...

J.D's Book: Whatever It Takes

6/23/2006 10:50:00 PM  
Blogger blert said...

5:00 PM
Habu_1 said...

I sincerely hope you are correct. I pointed out to my brother-in-law an article in the Wall Street Journal about 10 years ago. If I remember it was Midkiff vs. The Hawaiian Housing Authority. Seems like one of the islands was owned by only six families. Using eminent domain Hawaii took their private land and sold it to other private entities. It was big trouble I said.

Please do not confuse the Bishop Estate stranglehold and fake school charity that had corrupted the entire political elite with what is going on now. That was a VERY special case. Imagine a ‘charity’ that is headed by ex-governors and chiefs of the state supreme court.

6/23/2006 11:17:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Nobody is for a withdrawal, even a timetable, for the troops

-- Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari

Which brings us to the next topic: the continuing necessity of coalition forces in Iraq. Mr. Zebari's primary mission in New York, in fact, was to review the U.N. mandate of coalition forces. He tells me about a fascinating discussion among Iraqi political leaders shortly before he left for New York. He told them, he says, that the new government was perfectly within its rights to ask for the departure of foreign troops. But he says he found no takers. In fact, the loudest objection to the idea came from Adnan al-Dulaimi, who represents a Sunni community generally thought to be most hostile to the "occupiers." They know only too well that coalition troops are their best protection against shadowy Baathist thugs who would like to lay claim to the Sunni leadership mantle. "Before the Sunnis were raising the flag for a withdrawal of all occupying forces immediately, that they are the sources of all the ills. Now they are the ones asking that they should stay," Mr. Zebari says.

Intimidation "is a problem," he continues. "That is, an intimidation campaign carried out primarily by the Baathists." He also says he believes the Baathists are behind the majority of terrorist attacks: "Identifying the enemy is very important. I personally believe the incubator of this so-called 'insurgency' is the Baath Party, is the remnant of Saddam's regime. Even with Zarqawi and al Qaeda, who are very lethal. But without them [the Baathists] providing the infrastructure, the support, the intelligence, the hideouts--then the attacks would not happen."

(free registration required)

6/24/2006 04:13:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/24/2006 05:54:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Fabulous news, about the right mix, 10-1.
Depends on how involved in operations the US troops are. If operating as more than advisors 7-1 would be better, but 10-1 is enough if the Iraqis carry most of the water.

As your man says, we started a bit late and are playing catch up, but at least they've begun to get a handle on it.

6/24/2006 07:33:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If well led, the Iraqi will do as well as any man. They make up both sides of this Civil War.
To assume the Insurgents better men is foolish. If there are enough solid troops embedded in the ranks, history shows the recruits will hold.
Training and experience is all important. Though the experiences in Taji and Ramadi indicate we are not training the Iraqi in combat ops but in CYA politics.
The Army officers know it's a "Long War" and that they are not expected to "win" it.
So they do not.
Fulfilling expectations.

6/24/2006 08:55:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

You have to laugh at the audacity of the NYT. They have been major proponents of the political correctness which in its most advanced and insane form has home grown Islamists working at airport security gates pulling blue haired white ladies out of line for frisking. The idiocy has compounded so that the government has to listen to all phone calls and inspect all financial transactions when a focused examination of Islamic transactions and calls would do just fine. The next time you hear someone opining about connecting the dots, tell them "They can't handle the dots!"

6/24/2006 09:07:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/24/2006 12:49:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The Iraq War?

So far the winners are in Tehran, Damascus and Gaza.

Mr Sistani and Mr al-Sadr are both winners, where ever they may be today.

The Supreme Council for Islamic Revolution in Iraq (SCIRI) and the DAWA Party are both winnners in the Baghdad power struggle.

The Kurds, represented by Mr Talabani and Mr Hoshyar Zebari are winners, so far.

The US is down 20,000 casualties and $600 Billion USD to bring about this state of affairs.

Long serving Army officers do not trust the Iraqis or their troops. They feel that the Iraqis must be seperated from our troops, with little interaction. They frown upon Iraqi troops taking aggresive actions against the Insurgents. The Camp Taji story is indicitive of the problem.

What do they know, that makes them doubt the attainability of the Goal of turning Security Ops over to the Iraqi?

6/24/2006 12:50:00 PM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

Habu, 12:27 asks. DR 12:50 answers. I would like to see the look on GWB's face if that was asked of him.

6/24/2006 01:10:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

I must say, habu, that I really do not know how much latitude the Commanders have.
I have read Mr Rumsfeld complain of the lack of control he has over the "way things are".
Over a year ago he complained about the RoE's being vague and unitelligable. But could not change them. Lawyers are often cited as the reason.

I would imagine that in differing areas the latitudes would differ. But remember, General Casey said he personally approved the strike on mini Z. As I recall the after action reporting on the subject.

That would indicate, to me, a rather constrained and top heavy command structure for an airstrike approval against, what one would assume to be, a preapproved target of opportunity.

Micro managed from on high.

The reports I've read point to it being systemic feature of the Army of One.

In cases like Abu Garib, however, I recall the signs on the walls prohibiting photography.
The respect for Regulations and Rules were so lacking, it was a major disaster. Not the pantie raids, but the photos.
Which Regulations posted on the wall clearly prohibited.
But no one cared.
No management at all.

6/24/2006 01:46:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

By SALAD DUHUL, Associated Press Writer

MOGADISHU, Somalia -- A fundamentalist Muslim who is listed by the U.S. State Department as a suspected al-Qaida collaborator was named Saturday as the new leader of an Islamic militia that has seized control of Somalia's capital.

The militia said in a statement it had appointed Sheikh Hassan Dahir Aweys, who the Bush administration says was an associate of Osama bin Laden in the early 1990s.

6/24/2006 02:16:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This is the caption to the photo accompanying the article

Militia from the Islamic Courts Union arrive at a rally against neighboring Ethiopia's alleged interference in Somali affairs moments after an unidentified gunman shot dead a Swedish cameraman, Friday, June 23, 2006 in the Somali capital, Mogadishu. The assailant came up from behind and shot the cameraman through the chest at close range, killing him on the spot before disappearing in the crowd, an Associated Press reporter who witnessed the shooting said. Another Western reporter who was walking with the victim was unhurt. (AP Photo/Mohamed Sheikh Nor)

Shot him straight in the heart

Damn MSM!
Another European dead, reporting the News. If a little spin is the price to be paid, seems a fair enough trade.

The video equipment is not that costly, free lance reporting is all the rage.
The risks are deadly, but what the hey! Then the stories could be spun another way.

6/24/2006 02:34:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Children looking for handouts of candy would often approach 1st Lt. Anselm T.W. Richards and the men in his platoon. The soldiers would oblige them, then ask for information.

Sometimes, the children would tell them who made bombs and dealt in weapons. Everybody in town seemed to know the answer.

One day, Richards says, the parents of a 12-year-old boy told him their son had been beheaded by insurgents because he accepted a soccer ball as a gift from soldiers.

"We said to the parents, 'You tell us who did it and we will get them.' They said if we talk to you, they'll kill us as well,'" says Richards, a hedge fund broker from Philadelphia.


It's a waste of time even trying to deal with people like those parents. Either they made up a cock and bull story because they favor the insurgents, or they are so weak that they don't even want revenge for the death of their child.

6/24/2006 02:52:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

No w.w., most likely they have a half dozen other children, orphans in waiting. The US security system in Iraq is dysfunctional. The Insurgents dealt with "later".

That is not what the strong horse does.

The people may wish revenge, they do not believe the US can deliver it.

6/24/2006 03:21:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

As the Headman's conversation in Mosul is paraphrased,
"You let them go, after only a few months!"
The young Lt.
"No sir, they were released by Iraqi Courts"
"Lies! The US released them! The US is in Charge! You are responsible!"
As reported by Mr Yon, if recollection serves adequately.

6/24/2006 03:27:00 PM  
Blogger Mad Fiddler said...

The stinking Left will not be satisfied by anything other than that we all take a marker, make a dotted line on our necks labeled “cut HERE” and kneel down before the nearest Jihadi fanatic.

6/24/2006 03:55:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/24/2006 04:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

We Give You Wampum and Taquitos, You Give Away the Country!
For the White House, the Congressional picnic last week seemed like the perfect setting to continue mending strained relations with Republican allies on Capitol Hill:

President Bush and his advisers eating taquitos and Mexican confetti rice on the lawn of the White House with Republican Congressional leaders.

6/24/2006 04:33:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Hot off the Newsweak wire

By Rod Nordland
Updated: 9:42 a.m. MT June 24, 2006
June 24, 2006 -
A timetable for withdrawal of occupation troops from Iraq. Amnesty for all insurgents who attacked U.S. and Iraqi military targets. Release of all security detainees from U.S. and Iraqi prisons. Compensation for victims of coalition military operations. ...

...they're also key clauses of a national reconciliation plan drafted by new Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, who will unveil it Sunday. The provisions will spark sharp debate in Iraq—but the fiercest opposition is likely to come from Washington, ...

...The plan also calls for a withdrawal timetable for coalition forces from Iraq, but it doesn't specify an actual date—one of the Sunnis' key demands. It calls for "the necessity of agreeing on a timetable under conditions that take into account the formation of Iraqi armed forces so as to guarantee Iraq's security," and asks that a U.N. Security Council decree confirm the timetable. Mahmoud Othman, a National Assembly member who is close to President Talabani, said that no one disagrees with the concept of a broad, conditions-based timetable. ...

...U.S. ambassador to Iraq, Zalmay Khalilzad, in a recent interview with NEWSWEEK referred to a "conditions-driven roadmap" rather than a timetable. Officially, the U.S. position is that coalition troops would leave as soon as Iraqi government officials say they're able to handle their own security, which leaves some room for diplomatic wiggle if the Iraqis declare their own intended timetable. ...

...Equally contentious from the U.S. point of view is the idea of granting amnesty to insurgents who have attacked and killed American soldiers. That is almost taken as a given by Iraqi negotiators, however. The draft plan calls for the release of all security detainees being held without charges in the country, estimated at as many as 14,000, going far beyond Maliki's announcement two weeks ago that he would be releasing 2,500 such detainees. ...

The humvess are rolling home again hoorah, hoorah!

We'll give 'em a hearty welcome and
hoorah, hoorah!

The men will sing and the girls will shout, the ladies they will all fall out;

When the humvees come rollin' home

Hate to say I told ya so...

6/24/2006 04:35:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"That is not what the strong horse does."
The Strong Horse would have LEVELED Tikrit and surrounds, and SAVED Iraqi and AMERICAN LIVES in the short and long run.
But hey, what do I know?
I don't even realize how GREAT this country will be with no borders and 100 Million new uneducable unassimable citizens.
What a Crock!

6/24/2006 04:38:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

"amnesty to insurgents who have attacked and killed American soldiers. That is almost taken as a given by Iraqi negotiators, however.

"...Principle No. 19 calls for "Recognizing the legitimacy of the national resistance and differentiating or separating it from terrorism" while "encouraging the national resistance to enroll in the political process and recognizing the necessity of the participation of the national resistance in the national reconciliation dialogue." ..."<.i>

Gotta love it.

As whit was saying

On to Tehran!

or not

6/24/2006 04:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Think how much Shock, Awe, and Long Lived RESPECT we would have EARNED throughout the ME if most all of Saddam's relatives and fellow people shredders had been vaporized in the first week!

6/24/2006 04:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Principal Number 20:
Elect an Old-School MALE as POTUS.

6/24/2006 04:43:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Doug '08!

6/24/2006 04:43:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

"...and asks that a U.N. Security Council decree confirm the timetable. ..."

Let's think about these two diverse but soon to be intersecting timelines.
The UN will consider Iran nuclear capacity and the US occupation of Iraq, at about the same time.
All pre November election,
July & August, actually.

All the while you guys thought the UN served no purpose.

Think of the vote deals possible now, the back slaps & stabs, and the negotiations, France, Russia, China, all with their hands out.

Gonna' be grand.

6/24/2006 04:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Habu, 12:27 asks. DR 12:50 answers. I would like to see the look on GWB's face if that was asked of him. "
Want some Taquitos with them Wieners?
The he flashes his famous wit:
Man those Dumb F... CITIZENS are Gonna Suck the BIG WIENER, and Karl's gonna make 'em LIKE it!

6/24/2006 04:58:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Iran in Iraq
expanding the game to Turtle Bay.

6/24/2006 05:02:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Today Tehran,
Tommorrow Azatlan!

6/24/2006 05:04:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/24/2006 05:04:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Release of all security detainees from U.S. and Iraqi prisons.
Compensation for victims of coalition military operations....
JAILTIME for Perpetraitors sic of said WarCrimes.

6/24/2006 05:20:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

JFKerry and his crew, all they had to do was wait a week, then come out strong for Mr Maliki.
Mr Bush would still be back pedaling on the timeline and the Dems would be promoting both departure and victory as defined by Mr Maliki and the locals.
All on about the same schedule.


6/24/2006 05:24:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Now the timeline debate goes to the UN Security Council for a resolution & decree.

Arbitrate between the Iraqi "national resistance" and the US. To set a date for a peaceful pullout, who you tryin' to kid. Of course they'll set a date, or we veto.
No PR win there.

Did you see the US vs Italy soccor game. That's how we'll do at the UN. The referees are not unbiased.

6/24/2006 05:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Can I Git Me a Huntin License in Here?"

6/24/2006 05:33:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

referencing 5:24 PM

6/24/2006 05:34:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Once there is a defined Goal
The end is in sight

Because the Goal, it will be achieved

By letting others define yhe Goals and by extention, Victory, Mr Bush will have lost the advantage.
But the Dems, by not acknowledging victory even possible at the achievable Goal, will lose even more credibility.
Falling even further behind the reality curve.

I've never seen the like.
I've only read about such governmental dysfunction.

Just prior to their collapse

6/24/2006 05:48:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/24/2006 05:54:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"I've never seen the like.
I've only read about such governmental dysfunction.
Throw money, treasure, lives, and heritage at it it.
It's the Compassionate Conservative thing to do.
Like Katrina.
Health and Welfare.
Bet Lemay knew "Curtis L" did not not stand for LOSER!

6/24/2006 05:57:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

NOTHING in politics has ever galled me as much as W and his minions self-righteously and condescendingly addressing those who disagreed wrt to Immigration by mounting their High Horse of Superior COMPASSION for the downtrodden.
Without a hint of giving a DAMN about the American Wage-earners, particularly the downtrodden!
Not to mention ALL the taxpayers.
And finally, Vets who Sacrificed to make this country what it became, NOT the Globalist Wet Dream of GWB.

6/24/2006 06:06:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

How very "Rockefeller Republican" it is to "forget" the American Wagearner!
...with huzzahs from the "Conservative" WSJ which I may despise more than CNN.

6/24/2006 06:10:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Since "Honest George" has acknowledged how IMPORTANT security/illegal crossings are to our National Interest,
he'll crack down on that stuff to the maximum extent possible under present law,
even IF New Legislation is not passed,
Just like he "will" if New Law is passed!

6/24/2006 06:23:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

WSJ is many things, doug, being part of the partisan press is one of them.

They represent their readers, or who they think their readers are.
Almost all publishers behave in a like manner.

They represent their Public, which votes for them each day, by buying the paper, or watching the show.
Some publisher types take this quite seriously, as a duty, so to speak.

It is, in part, what gives them their self rightous "high ground".

Been there, done that.

6/24/2006 06:28:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Didja get to listen to the Hayworth interview with Hedgecock?
Two of my favorites.
Roger took on a pleasant Egyptian Doctor named "Osama" who would have gotten a pass by most of us, cause it seemed quite pro-US.
Roger, however, compared and contrasted how much criticism and SELF Criticism the Catholic Church got from it's followers wrt to the Pedophile Priests.
No such honesty elsewhere.
Guess that's why ISLAM gets a pass and is taught to California 7th Graders, Separation, or NO Separation between Church and...

6/24/2006 06:52:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Napolitano has the Arizona Guard Rotating Tires and changing oil for the border Patrol.
Meanwhile the Border IS Militarized.
...on the other side.

6/24/2006 06:58:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

The Tancredo Republicans
Friday, June 23, 2006
Novel strategy: Run on their lack of accomplishment.

On the other hand, J.D. Hayworth could lose his seat in Arizona despite taking his anti-immigration riff to any radio or TV show that will have him.

What might well cost all of them their seats is the growing perception that this Congress hasn't achieved much of anything.

6/24/2006 07:05:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

WSJ - Voice of SOME of the people!

6/24/2006 07:07:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Roger Hedgecock interviews
Rep. J.D. Hayworth (R-AZ)
Facing the illegals invasion...

6/24/2006 07:09:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

As I believe smacko mentioned the other day, Mr Bush has been working on the "opening" of Mexico since at least 1995. In conjunction with the I-35 corridor project. Which Texas got under way without major Federal assistance, under Mr Bush's Governorship, per smacko.
It is no secret, Mr Bush's position.
9-11 set back his initial Immigration Program reform, now 5 years of under the wire influx has finally hit the radar.
It is a major challenge here, but not acknowledged by the Government, except to use as a scapegoat or strawman.
A shame really, cause it effects the lives of real people. Most of whom we'd be happy to have, in an orderly fashion.

6/24/2006 07:09:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Roger is a UCSB Alum.
...along with Joe Wilson and Babs Bodine.
Was Mayor of San Diego, and is a recovering Lawyer.
Also Restranteur, now Talk Show Host.

6/24/2006 07:11:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The reconfigured JD's disrict, took him out of the Indian country and put Tempe, the University town, in it's stead. A old time University type is running against him. JD still has the northern Scottsdale area, though. It's pulled him through in the past.

6/24/2006 07:13:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Most of whom we'd be happy to have, in an orderly fashion"
But not 100 Million, in ANY Fashion!

6/24/2006 07:13:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

7:13 PM If he lost, it would "prove" Bush right on immigration, not that redistricting works!

6/24/2006 07:15:00 PM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If he loses, the Republicans will lose the House.
Arizona has always had Federal clout out of proportion to it's population. Senior Senators and Representitives, Supreme Court Jusices, Attn. Generals and the like. While recently solid Republican, except in the south, we have historicaly split it's tickets, it is in many ways a very liberal State. Mr McCain fits right in. It could be Blue in a moment.
If AZ swings, it'll be part of a cascade.

6/24/2006 07:22:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Doctor Chertoff, Bush EXPERT on Homeland Security:
"Fences don't work."

Roger Hedgecock, ex-Mayor of San Diego:
"Works fine here!"

6/24/2006 07:35:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Chertoff "Promises" to have border secured by the TENTH Anniversary of 9-11.
...without fences, of course.
"Comprehensive" Control, I guess.

6/24/2006 07:37:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Blue in a moment."
...a few more Bush Moments of
"Securing the Border"
Should Swing things.

6/24/2006 07:40:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

LA School District
(one of nation's largest)
High School graduation rate:
...less than 45%!

6/24/2006 07:57:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Liberal and Compassionate Conservatives know:
"Children Are Our Future"

6/24/2006 07:59:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Bilbray won his special election victory in California this month by demagoguing immigration. But all that election really proved is that a GOP Beltway lobbyist could keep a seat in a 60% Republican district"
I think Duke Cunningham got 49%!
...just the facts, maam, this IS the WSJ.

6/24/2006 08:22:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"Americans are smart enough to know that immigrants will keep coming as long as they have the economic incentive to do so.

They also don't want the social disruption favored by the deport-'em-all Tancredo Republicans.
When all else fails, LIE, j
ust like their Representative:

6/24/2006 08:30:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

On the Editorial Page
"Nobody is for a withdrawal, even a timetable," says Iraq's foreign minister.

...He seems to think many problems could have been mitigated had Iraqis been allowed to move toward self-government much, much sooner.

"The biggest mistake, honestly, if you go back, was not entrusting the Iraqis as partners, to empower them, to see them do their part, to fill the vacuum, to have a national unity government," he says.

According to Gen. Jay Garner, who briefly ruled Iraq before he was peremptorily replaced by Mr. Bremer in May 2003, that was exactly the plan. His provisional government probably would have included Kurdish leaders Massoud Barzani and Jalal Talabani, secular Shiites Ahmed Chalabi and Ayad Allawi, religious Shiite Ibrahim al-Jaafari and Abdul Aziz al-Hakim, and the Sunni Adnan Pachachi. The idea was that free elections would soon follow.

But "if you read Bremer's book ["My Year in Iraq"], when he came, one of his tasks was to stop these 'exiles,' " Mr. Zebari says. "I think the biggest sin was to change the mission from liberation to occupation.
That is the mother of all sins, honestly."

6/24/2006 08:41:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Mr. Zebari is reluctant to name names.
But the drivers of the anti-"exile" policy included Colin Powell, Condoleezza Rice, Richard Armitage and former Bremer aide (and current deputy national security adviser) Meghan O'Sullivan.
In the end, U.S. attempts to empower "indigenous" Iraqis proved worse than a failure.

6/24/2006 08:48:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

"This is a topic our host should highlight in an Original Post."
Whether or not Wretchard choses to write on this subject
(He IS in OZ and may not feel a mastery)
I think it is a Damn Shame on the "Conservative Blogosphere" that virtually all the heavy lifting so far has been done by others, from Talk Radio, to NRO, to Human Events, and etc.
If the bloggers had been on the job, EVERYONE would know what a
whether they are for or against anything else.

6/24/2006 09:20:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

" Course we could still do that to Saudi Arabia. "
Just kill all the Rich Fat Ones, and pay off the people with the proceeds.
Camel Herding Heaven in the land of the American Oilpatch.

6/24/2006 09:23:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

Hey, Habu:
Could you do us the favor of reposting your synopsis of your dad's exploits as a Marine and then Naval Aviator?
I was talking to a guy today who showed me "his dog's" Purple Heart that he got for surviving a pellet to the head!
Turns out his neighbor is a Vet that flew Hellcats, and spent 30 days in the drink in a vest among other things.
Awarded the Dog one of his hearts.
I'm sure he'd get a kick if I printed out some stuff about your dad and gave it to him.

6/24/2006 09:31:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

In the Khobar Towres case, the Clinton administration left many stones unturned.
Still, many stones remain unturned. It remains to be seen whether the Khobar case and its fugitives will make it onto the list of America's demands in "talks" with the Iranians. Or will we ultimately ignore justice and buy a separate peace with our enemy?

6/24/2006 09:42:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

> The people may wish revenge, they do not believe the US can deliver it.

Those same people put up with Saddam's tyranny forever, before we even got over there. It's not our fault, they are just weak. Little whipped puppies. It's impossible to help someone who isn't trying.

Now the Kurds, that is a different story. They stood up to Saddam before we got there, fighting to partial freedom even after he gassed them. Those are people that can be helped.

6/24/2006 11:08:00 PM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

This is part of a BBC report:


The initiative received immediate endorsement from the leader of the biggest Sunni coalition in parliament, Adnan al-Dulaimi.

He urged all Iraqis to join in the effort to rebuild their country, but he called for the rapid release of detainees and a halt to raids and attacks on civilians' homes.

When he took power last month, Mr Maliki pledged to take control of Iraq's security situation from the US-led coalition within 18 months.

Reports from the US suggest military planners are aiming to reduce the numbers of troops in Iraq over the next 12 months, but no firm decision has yet been taken.

As Mr Maliki delivered his plan in parliament Japan began withdrawing its military vehicles from Iraq into Kuwait as part of its planned troop withdrawal.

Last week Japan announced that it would pull out 600 troops from the southern Muthanna province, handing control to Iraqi security forces."...

The NeoCon moment has arrived.The inevitable momentum of American action is for withdrawal. The pace of which is within degrees of each other no matter where you are on the political spectrum. Some of the thread proceeding me between Doug, DR and Habu would make for sizzling c-span if they had been coming out of the mouths of our masters in congress. Whatever they say now does not much matter. A previous post by DR will haunt Kerry for the rest of his life.

"desert rat said...
JFKerry and his crew, all they had to do was wait a week, then come out strong for Mr Maliki.
Mr Bush would still be back pedaling on the timeline and the Dems would be promoting both departure and victory as defined by Mr Maliki and the locals.
All on about the same schedule.


5:24 PM"

It is all up to the Iraqis now. The US public will not affect future events in Iraq. The future will tell if the Neo Cons were right or wrong. But that same American public would be well served to be in a cold fury about what went on here. How has the War on Terror been advanced? Has the exchange of all the costs of this war made you and your family safer? Do you trust this same administration to determine your legacy and future disposition of your own birthright and country with the illegal immigration issue?

There was a slight diversion earlier in the thread about the use of eminent domain by government to take what you worked for, but it pales when you think that this same government is also taking what you are and who you are going to be.

Stay the course.

6/25/2006 04:12:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

The actual plan was presented, and it said nothing about US troops leaving Iraq, only when Iraqi troops would take over security duties. (The latter was already announced and in progress.)

Al-Maliki's reconciliation plan called for a timeline established for Iraqi forces to take over all security duties in the country. It included no specifics on the withdrawal of American and British forces, a Shiite lawmaker told The Associated Press.

6/25/2006 04:42:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

The Japanese withdrawal was announced a week ago, and is part of the US-UK plan for Iraq security.

From the Department of Defense:

Coalition Troops to Leave Muthanna Province in Iraq
By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

SAMAWAH, Iraq, June 22, 2006 – All coalition troops will leave Iraq's Muthanna province by the end of July, making it the country's first province to be responsible for its own security since the fall of Saddam Hussein, Iraqi officials said here today...

"This is what we've been striving for since we got here," said British Army Col. Giles Vosper-Brown, the commander of coalition troops in the province. Iraqi police and soldiers have been handling all the security and emergency calls in the province for the last four months.

On June 19, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki announced the withdrawal of all coalition troops from the province. This includes British, Australian and Japanese troops. Japanese Self-Defense Force engineers will redeploy home. British and Australian troops will redeploy out of the province to other areas in Iraq.

Vosper-Brown said the coalition will maintain close communications with Iraqi security forces in the province and, if needed, can help. But, he said, he believes the Iraqis can handle any eventuality.

6/25/2006 04:52:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

ww, The point is that a non-power, Iraq, is determining when and where the US military goes or stays. Japan rightly is saying "coital this" and "sayonara mother coiter". It is the same as Mexico determining when and where the US population goes and both Iraq and Mexico are making decisions that affect the lives and treasure of US citizens. If this is leadership it is of no small wonder that US presitge has the vicosity of axle grease in January.

6/25/2006 05:19:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...


I surmise you are a younger fellow.
Under 30 would be my guess.
Some what idealistic.
Hopeful and believing.

Us older folk, we've seen this kind of thing before. It was not pretty before, it will be ugly now.

The money line of the Newsweak piece, the Iran in Iraq line that comes to the fore.

"..."...and asks that a U.N. Security Council decree confirm the timetable. ..."

I recall posters here saying the new Iraqi government would be going to the UN, pressing the case against Syria and Iran. Seemed to make sense at the time.
Now Iraq will making the Iranians case.

Circles and cycles,
scenes that we've all seen before.
Soon we'll tell you some more.

The humvees are rollin' home again
Hoorah, Hoorah!
The War on Terror's all but done
Hoorah, Hoorah!

Just watch the trucks.
They are not rollin' on to Tehran,
oh no, they are comin' on home
Hoorah, Hoorah!

The UN mandate that the US operates under in Iraq, runs out in Jan. '07. Time is short, the debate starts in the UN ASAP.

Have to excelerate the search for Peace, no use posin' for pictures, or waitin' for more people to die. Just 'cause we don't want to talk about a schedule for leavin'.

6/25/2006 05:44:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

You all rember Mr Richard Perle, aye?

He writes Why did Bush blink on Iran? Ask Condi.

Funny how Mr Perles sees the Iranian cascades. His perspective is "much" different than Mr Bush's.

'cause the humvees are rollin' home

The Somolia example proved to be apt. In Ramadi, Haditha, Taji & Tikrit at least.

We'll get those insurgents, later

Saddam was almost right, he just did not have s deep enough hole.

Je should have studied Mullah Omar and Osama's example a bit closer.

6/25/2006 06:00:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Mr Perle says it is still not to late to save US honor.

The humvees are rollin' home.

Hoorah, Hoorah!

6/25/2006 06:09:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Classic Trish:
trish said...
The check is ALWAYS in the ever-lovin' mail.

Can they afford to? Can they afford to not?

11:20 PM

trish said...
They cannot.

11:24 PM
Where is Trish?

6/25/2006 06:15:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"The shell game (also known as Thimblerig, Three Shell and a Pea, the Old Army Game) is portrayed as a gambling game, but is purely a swindle game used to perpetrate fraud.
It is played on a flat surface, and requires three shells (or thimbles, walnut shells, bottle caps, and even match boxes) and a small soft round ball, about the size of a pea, and often referred to as such.

Shell games are a very common confidence trick, referred to as a short con.

The operators and their employees are often members of confidence gangs and can be dangerous if provoked.
It is best to stay clear of this game and those running it."

6/25/2006 06:21:00 AM  
Blogger Mad Fiddler said...

Thank you, doug, for the link to the Louis Freeh WSJ article in your 9:42 posting.

The article is a discussion of the appallingly self-serving bungle of the Clinton Administration handling of relations w Iran in particular relation to the pursuit of the bombers of the U.S. soldiers' dorm at Khobar. They were being held in Saudi custody, but Clinton and his ass-wipe minion Sandy (of the secret documents stuffed in his shorts) Berger refused to follow up or allow FBI Director Louis Freeh to do so. They desired to achieve some splendid breakthrough in relations with IRAN, which clearly had sponsored the bombing and the bombers, so they schemed to squelch the investigation to avoid EMBARRASSING the fanatics in Tehran.

What imbeciles.

While I do not believe that it's reasonable in all cases to expect justice in this life for all things, it does seem worth working to setlle accounts with that dung-eating-sack-of-slugs-for-a-president.

I guess he really is exactly the appropriate person to head the United Nations, where he will be surrounded by his own kind.

Someone should start a Clinton ANTI-memorial, subscriber-funded, to document the sorry rascals.

6/25/2006 06:23:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

The Conjurer" by Hieronymus Bosch.

The painting accurately displays a performer doing the cups and balls routine, which has been practiced since Egyptian times.
The shell game does have some origins in this old trick.
The real trick of this painting is the pickpocket who is working for the conjurer. The pickpocket is robbing the spectator who is bent over.

6/25/2006 06:27:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

"They were being held in Saudi custody, but Clinton and his ass-wipe minion Sandy (of the secret documents stuffed in his shorts)"
Sandy Walks Free!
Whata Country!

6/25/2006 06:30:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

In the Pic, check out the guy pointing toward the pickpocket.
(while stealing a feel?)

6/25/2006 06:33:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Is that W in the Conjurer's Basket?

6/25/2006 06:47:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

> ww, The point is that a non-power, Iraq, is determining when and where the US military goes or stays.

It's their country! We made them a democracy, so now they have the right to tell us to leave. Just like the Philippines did, Japan told us to move our bases, and South Korea might throw us out. That's freedom. The basic concept is that the citizens of each country decide whether foreign armies get to sit on their land.

I personally see things the opposite, that staying in Iraq would be a sign that the US is weak. The battle was won long ago and now we are letting ourselves be used as pawns in fighting their civil war.

We knocked down Saddam's government, killed or captured his leadership, gave the Shiites & Kurds their freedom and time to arm themselves, we searched for and destroyed the weapons of mass destruction, helped the Iraqis write a constitution, and gave them time to vote in several elections and form a government.

What reason do we have to stay? What are we waiting for? Iraq is probably a smaller danger to us than Iran and some other Arab countries.

We shouldn't let them use us as mercenaries to die in their civil wars while they sit safely at home saying, "I'm so scared of the insurgency that I can't fight back. You can fight and die for me instead."

I think Rumsfeld's strategy is exactly right. We pull back to bases and fight a special forces & bombing war. The Iraqis can be in the front lines directing traffic and taking the casualties. They give us the coordinates to bomb.

The reality though is that there is no evidence the Iraqis will ask us to leave any time soon. The real peace plan didn't say that. A few liberal sources like Newsweek and British tabloids fantasize we'll be asked to leave but there is no evidence at all it will happen.

6/25/2006 07:14:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

University chancellor dies in apparent suicide jump. CNN

Denton came under fire the past two years over a pricey remodel to her home on the university campus and a high-paying university position created for her longtime partner, Gretchen Kalonji.

In March, she defended $600,000 worth of renovations she demanded during contract negotiations before being hired in 2004.

Campus employees criticized the expenditures as lavish while the university raised fees and cut budgets.

In 2005, an employee union criticized the university's creation of a $192,000-a-year job for Kalonji, a former professor of materials science at the University of Washington in Seattle.

University officials defended the hiring, saying Kalonji's experience would be an asset in her role as director of international strategy development.

"Denice was an accomplished and passionate scholar whose life and work demonstrated a deep commitment to public service and to improving opportunity for the disadvantaged and underrepresented,"

UC President Robert Dynes said in a statement.
Denton was appointed chancellor in 2004.

6/25/2006 07:21:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If Mr Bush were to say what you just did, w.w., I'd agree.

But he does not.
We have not "won" per Mr Bush.
We must "Stay the Course" 'til we do.

Youd say to the Iraqis, to paraphrase
We've done our job, it's up to you"

Then you say we should become less mobile, more isolated, but not withdraw while we continue fighting "a special forces & bombing war."

Why, and just as importantly, against whom?

Why should the US police Iraq?
Any more than we police Kuwait, UAE, Somalia, Nigeria, Mexico or the Sudan?

6/25/2006 07:24:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

ww, I think I have been unsuccessful in conveying my point. Doug has been toying with the metaphor of what is known in New York as "three card Monty". We bet the farm on a three card monty game. We will know if it was a win or loss at some time in the future, but we sat down for the game. The prestige and power of the United States is no small ante deal. Is Syria, Iran or AQ weaker for the venture? Are we strongrer or weaker? Will the American people be quick to sign on for another campaihn for a more worthy goal? Is the military better trained and prepared? is our strategic interests in the world enhanced?

Of course it is there country. We did not make them a democracy.

6/25/2006 07:24:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

If we should no longer be involved in Iraq's Civil War?

6/25/2006 07:27:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/25/2006 07:40:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

The US interests in Iraq would be best served with an enhanced MIT program described in smacko's 7:24am link.

This Program should be instituted on a Five year plan., acroos the ISF & Police forces. 275,000 Iraqis, would require 30,000 US troops. As I say for the next Five years.

Then what ever prepositioned equipment we needed in the Region, an adequate air facility or two and the troops required to secure them. Another 15,000 to 30,000 troops.

The negotiations are not going that way, are they? The public positions, taken by the Iraqi, are what is telling, w.w, not the specific releases from the corporate press.

The MSM are not in the lead on this story, the speed of the collapse of the US's political positions in Iraq and the implications of it have yet to be realized, by many.

The Mighty MiTT!

6/25/2006 07:49:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

We're humbled and grateful.

6/25/2006 07:51:00 AM  
Blogger Doug said...

Small potatoes, but reminds me of one story I heard yesterday where the Hellcat came in properly and caught the hook, but as soon as he got out, they threw it overboard since it was about to cook-off.

6/25/2006 07:54:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

I think we need to say that we will fight a thousand Afghanistans if we need to, but rarely if ever would we invade again in a situation like Iraq.

The legal case for invading Afghanistan was as clear cut and solid as world war II. Al Qaeda was part of the government of Afganistan, bombed us, then refused to turn over the bombers or promise not to do it again. That is the same as Japan at Pearl Harbor. The fact that Al Qaeda used a slightly different mechanism to deliver the bombs changed nothing.

9/11 was an act of war. Once they bombed us, under the standard laws of war we had the right to fight them to unconditional surrender, occupy every inch of their soil, and replace their government.

Iraq is a much weaker case. Our attack there was based totally on the idea that they were a danger to us, something which even then was clearly based on weak evidence and has no legal basis. The argument that Saddam was a bad guy, might have weapons of mass destruction, had some loose links to terrorist groups, and so might be dangerous somehow is very, very weak as a justification for invading Iraq. By that same argument we could invade dozens of countries and in fact it would give almost any country the excuse to invade any other countries they wanted to.

There definitely were some special justifications for invading Iraq. The argument is that countries voluntarily give up part of their war making powers because the UN will do the negotiating and fighting instead. Well, the UN security council said for a decade that Saddam's WMD were a danger to the world, and because Saddam refused to obey the UN resolutions by allowing inspections no outsider could verify if he had WMD. Bush clearly told the UN months before the invasion, "Either you enforce your resolutions or we will."

Also Saddam repeatedly attacked our aircraft in the no fly zone, something which is a direct act of war and which violated UN resolutions. It is also true that Saddam's government was even more illegitimate than most dictatorships, because the Shiite and Kurdish regions of Iraq clearly hated his rule, had rebelled repeatedly, in the case of the Kurds had partially broken free with the approval of the UN security council, and only remained under Saddam / Sunni partial control because of the abuse of WMD and domestic terrorism.

The terrorists use asymmetric warfare to set up situations where they are the most deadly with the fewest people in combat and the least casualties on their side. I think we need to do the same thing by fighting with surrogate forces and special forces wherever possible. Using contentional warfare in mass invasions to totally wipe out a government and start from scratch should be a last resort. In the case of something like Afghanistan total war is necessary, but even then we are better off using surrogates like the Northern Alliance as much as possible.

It is not a sign of weakness for us to fight in as "smart" a way as possible, it is strength. It's like the situation where dozens of insurgents are in one building. If we don't think they are worth interrogating, there is no reason for us to take casualties by fighting "fair" and pulling them out of the building mano a mano one by one. Instead we call in the bombers and let the crows take care of their corpses. Anytime we can get the job done by fighting a low impact (for us) war with surrogates and special forces, that is better than spending billions and taking high casualties to fight a conventional war.

6/25/2006 08:17:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

6/25/2006 08:23:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Then, w.w., we need to withdraw most of the Conventional Force from Iraq, as quickly as possible.

Then the wrong US Amry officer was relieved in Taji.
The MiTT program is what Special Forces was all about, when SF was not SWAT.

To obatain your stated Goal, the US is on the wrong course, welcome aboard!

6/25/2006 08:24:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

> Why, and just as importantly, against whom?

I think we have two battles to fight in Iraq: the war on terror, and to prevent Baathists from taking over the government of Iraq again.

The first comes from our right to self defense, and what happened at 9/11. As the congressional post 9/11 authorization of force said, we have the right and duty to track down Al Qaeda and their allies who bombed us (on 9/11 and many other occasions). They are a group at war with the US, and we need to kill or capture them wherever they are. This doesn't necessarily mean every Islamist or even everyone who claims to be Al Qaeda, but those who are actively at war with us.

So we have an ongoing interest in killing or capturing whatever Al Qaeda of that type still is in Iraq and other countries. That doesn't necessarily mean that we need to occupy Iraq forever. Instead we could use Zarqawi's killing as a model for the future. Our allies or special forces give us the location of Al Qaeda terrorists. Special forces or planes dispatched from regional bases kill or capture those enemy leaders. We use those same mechanisms to support our local surrogates in eliminating Al Qaeda.

The second goal is to end the war without looking like we are losing. I believe that the main way to do it is to switch to the lower impact (on US) war I mention above. As long as we do that, and prevent Saddam's forces from taking over by force again, then we have won. The reality is that the day when the Baathists could take over by default has come and gone. Their spy networks have been destroyed in the Shiite and Kurdish areas, those two groups are armed, ready, and already fighting a civil war, and many Baathists are dead or captured.

6/25/2006 08:32:00 AM  
Blogger blert said...

Bush & Co’s change of heart revolves around the acknowledgement that Iran has at least a token nuclear capability even now.

The mullahs have almost certainly rigged some nuclear IEDs in their oil fields and at Bandar Abbas.

It is also plain that they have spread their bets around the countryside: only token amounts of enrichment are occurring underground.

In short all of the proffered military solutions to Iran have decayed into nightmares.

BTW small w:

Total War = absolutely no limits on weaponry deployed = NBC warfare. Afghanistan was fought with limited means with a goal of unconditional surrender. CIA and SF does not equate to total war.

Folks, it looks like we’ve won a grand tactical victory – and harvested a strategic reversal. As for Iran: “Welcome to the big table…” As for Iraq: The Assassins Club gains the member that links the Med to the Gulf.

The US Army may own the night but al Qods Brigade owns the knife – and Muqtada al Sadr is their mask.

6/25/2006 09:03:00 AM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

Afghanistan was a total war. The only reason we didn't use some weapons was because they weren't necessary.

Also using excessive force is counter productive and a way to lose wars. Vietnam is an example. We lost it by fighting too hard and killing too many people. If we had fought smarter and killed less people, we could have won.

99% of any war is the propaganda war. Unless one is willing to kill or move every enemy in a location, and occupy it forever, then excessive force backfires and loses wars.

Saddam gassed the Kurds and still couldn't get them to quit fighting. That's the way it always is, force can't change everyone's minds. One reason Zarqawi is dead is because of excessive force like the Jordan Wedding bombing, and bombing of Shiite mosques. Al Qaeda has lost much support by attacking too many groups and making too many people made at it.

6/25/2006 09:26:00 AM  
Blogger desert rat said...

Lost in "Nam because we caused to much damage to that last Northern Invasion of the South?

Because we killed to many of them during Tet, in Hue City?
That we overly bombed Haiphong and Hanoi?

Rederence some experts on that theory, it is certainly novel.

Because where ever they taught you that, w.w., they did ya a disservice.

6/25/2006 09:37:00 AM  
Blogger RWE said...

Speaking of Iran, go over and read the article by Louis Freeh on the Kohobar Towers investigation.

It will blow you socks off!

6/25/2006 10:12:00 AM  
Blogger Deuce ☂ said...

There was no US military failure in Viet Nam as great as the political failure. It is often overlooked, but in April 1975, then President Gerald Ford, who once took pride in saying he was a Ford not a Lincoln (He went on to prove he was an Edsel), gave a speech at Tulane University in New Orleans. On the day of that speech there were 100,000 NVA troops outside Saigon. Ford said, “Today, America can regain the sense of pride that existed before Vietnam. But it cannot be achieved by re-fighting a war that is finished as far as America is concerned. As I see it, the time has come to look forward to an agenda for the future, to unify, to bind up the Nation's wounds, and to restore its health and its optimistic self-confidence.”

That part of the speech defeated whatever will and resistance was left of the South Vietnamese. The same year the Democrats in Conress cut off funding for the South Vietnamese and the inevitable collapse and rout occurred. The US military did not lose in Viet Nam. The US lost its will to win. It was thought that in winning, the price was too high and the results not worth it. If the US had kept supporting the South Vietnamese, I doubt it would have made much of a difference. It was always their war to win or lose as it is in Iraq. It is a logical truism that the Iraqis have no choice but try to win or they will certainly lose.

After the collapse at least two million were slaughtered in Cambodia and hundreds of thousands of South Vietnamese were jailed or killed by the communists. US strategic interests were hardly affected. The symbolic loss was tragic. Viet Nam was always subservient to the Cold War. It should have been won and could have been avoided.

It is too early to understand the strategic importance and consequences to US global interests regarding Iraq. The element of religion and Islam is far more dangerous than the political stress between domocracy and statist communism. I do not think Islam is reformable and no one reading this blog will live long enough to find out. I honestly do not see the return on our investment in Iraq.

6/25/2006 11:07:00 AM  
Blogger Mad Fiddler said...

Thanks everyone, for all the notes. I occasionally read the newspapers, Time, Newsweek, Discover, National Geographic, scan Drudge, They're all pale and bland, with only rare nuggets of insight. And most are pathetically tardy in grasping the trends and following the action, like an amateur camera operator who's never been to a soccer match.

Can it be long before folks like Wretchard are being commissioned to fill the vacuum left by the collapse of NYT into the city sewage lines?

6/25/2006 12:37:00 PM  
Blogger Alexis said...

According to a recent article from the South Florida Sun-Sentinel…

“American presence in Iraq is more dangerous to world peace than nuclear threats from North Korea or Iran, U.S. Rep. John P. Murtha, a Pennsylvania Democrat, said yesterday to a crowd of more than 200 in North Miami.”

Osama bin Laden couldn’t have said it better.

Amazing isn’t it? Rep. Murtha isn’t calling for American troops to leave Bosnia. Or Kosovo. Or Germany. Or Qatar. Or Okinawa. Why? It’s because he only calls for American troops to leave when a sufficient number of our troops get killed somewhere. Moral of the story: the key to victory against the United States is to kill enough Americans so men like Rep. Murtha demand we withdraw our troops.

6/25/2006 12:51:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

We lost the War in Japan because of LeMay's Firebombing:
It was a Total Propaganda War.
The signing on the Missourri signaled the Perigree of the US Peregrine, leading to a resurgence of their Prey Population, ultimately resulting in Global Warming from Excessive Bird Farts.
Thus the Hurricanes.

6/25/2006 01:32:00 PM  
Blogger Doug said...

I think wu is the one that defended Kevin Sites for days on end.
Wu didn't win.

6/25/2006 01:33:00 PM  
Blogger Herr Wu Wei said...

I never defended Kevin Sites, must have been someone else. I did say that the Marines accused by Sites would never be court-martialed so people should stop worrying, and it looks like I was right about that.

6/25/2006 02:03:00 PM  
Blogger RattlerGator said...

2164th, check yourself. "I honestly do not see the return on our investment in Iraq."

For all of the talk you and some others have been rambling on and on about in this thread, you couldn't have done a better job if the damn Iranians not only were paying you but scripting every word.

I'd rather be a hack for Dubya, thank you very much.

6/25/2006 02:44:00 PM  

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