Bell Curve The Law Talking Guy Raised by Republicans U.S. West
Well, he's kind of had it in for me ever since I accidentally ran over his dog. Actually, replace "accidentally" with "repeatedly," and replace "dog" with "son."

Thursday, December 01, 2005

No Strategy for WMD in Iraq

The new strategy for fighting the war in Iraq has been outlined by the White House in response to increasing calls.

It only mentions weapons of mass destruction (WMD) twice, even though that was the PRIMARY reason given why we went to war:

1. Victory will include: "An Iraq that is a partner in the global war on terror and the fight against the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction"
2. "If we and our Iraqi partners prevail in Iraq, we will have made America [safer...] by removing Saddam Hussein, a destabilizing force in a vital region, a ruthless dictator who had a history of pursuing and even using weapons of mass destruction[.]"

There is not a single word in the document about locating, securing, and destroying WMD in Iraq. Indeed, nothing in this document even resembles the initial justification and description of this war.

Can you imagine if Bush had said the following March 2003, all of which are now part of the official strategy:
1. "It is not realistic to expect a fully functioning democracy, able to defeat its enemies and peacefully reconcile generational grievances, to be in place less than three years after Saddam was finally removed from power"
2. "As the central front in the global war on terror, success in Iraq is an essential element in the long war against the ideology that breeds international terrorism. Unlike past wars, however, victory in Iraq will not come in the form of an enemy's surrender, or be signaled by a single particular event -- there will be no Battleship Missouri, no Appomattox. " (emphasis added)
3. "Our Strategy for Victory is Clear
We will help the Iraqi people build a new Iraq with a constitutional, representative government that respects civil rights and has security forces sufficient to maintain domestic order and keep Iraq from becoming a safe haven for terrorists. To achieve this end, we are pursuing an integrated strategy along three broad tracks, which together incorporate the efforts of the Iraqi government, the Coalition, cooperative countries in the region, the international community, and the United Nations."


Anonymous said...

LTG, your post misses the fundamental problem with all of this: They still want people to believe that starting a war Iraq would somehow fight terrorism. Terrorism and Iraq are NOT linked. Iraq was at worst, a rogue state.

I heard the speech and the underlying presumption is that somehow, Iraq had a role in 9/11, which it did not. Listen to the talk points that will now be spewed out over the next 2 months. You will hear it clearly there. Bush now wants us to believe not only that, but that "exporting" the terrorism problem from Afghanistan to Iraq was part of his strategy all along. I beg to differ. It was an externality- negative if you are an Iraqi or an resident of the region and postive if you are Bush.

The other problem is that Bush says "We are taking the fight to the enemy". Not really. We have given them an convenient target by putting US troops and contractors in the region. So he is admitting that he has used our military (at the cost of billions) as targets over there to avoid the possibility (slim, I think) that you wipe out a few hundred here and there across the U.S.

The whole thing is a smoke screen. And the document on www.whitehouse.gove is merely a PR document. It doesn’t even read like a strategic plan. I don not doubt that we have done some great things in Iraq. And I don’t want to take away from those who are working hard to make great things happen. However, that doesn’t constitute a strategy. WHat we are doing now is something that Republicans always opposed: NATION BUILDING.

So either there is something the Administration knows that we don't about Iraq, or they are very diluted- believing their own propaganda.

// posted by USWest

Dr. Strangelove said...

LTG is right: Bush would never have got his war if he had told us this was his "strategy" from the beginning.

Not only is the entire rationale for the war absent from the "victory" condtions, as LTG points out, but so is any meaningful definition of what it means to "defeat" the terrorists and "neutralize" the insurgency. Does this mean no violence? Only a little? What's the milestone here?

And the most glaring omission is the strategy itself is in the "security" area. The "clear/hold/build" strategy they describe--which presumably we have been trying to do for two and a half years--is failing. I mean, that's kind of the whole reason people keep saying there's no clear strategy, right?

We keep doing the same things and the violence is not decreasing. Our dead (2000+) and woudned (16000+) steadily mount. Mortars shells land and car bombs explode even in the "Green Zone."

What are we going to change so we start "winning," Mr. President? Isn't that the question?

Anonymous said...

I agree with what USWest points out. I was actually trying to show that point by demonstrating how nothing he now says even remotely resembles the original justification for the war. 

// posted by LTG

Anonymous said...

Was it Einstein that said that the definition of insanity was doing the same thing over and over again but expecting a different result?

I doubt this new "strategy" of putting talking points on NSC letter head and calling it a plan will help his approval ratings.

That will piss off House Republicans who have become adicted to campaign strategies emphasizing their close links to Bush who they portray as a "strong and decisive leader." They also rely heavily on accusing critics of the President of disloyalty, and even treason. With Bush's numbers so low local Republican politicians are left twisting slowly in the wind. I think for 2006, Demcorats will need to do little more than say "bring the troops home and balance the budget." They'll need far more for 2008 but first things first.  

// posted by Raised By Republicans

Anonymous said...

Right, LTG, WMD is missing from the rhetoric, but the original justification isn't missed at all. They continue pounding on this idea that Iraq somehow caused 9/11. That is what gets me. All the evidence, all the Wilsonagate affair, all the proof there was no yellow cake, and you are are still telling the American public that Iraq brought this on itself by somehow participating in 9/11.

Murtha made this point tonight in an interview. He said that the Administration still doesn't have a plan and basically nothing has changed. In fact, it was a good interview . It's worth a look.  

// posted by USWest