Thursday :: Aug 10, 2006

It LOOKED Like It Would Be Easy!


by pessimist

Back before the illegal invasion of Iraq, the neo-confidence crowd was getting mighty cocky:


Nothing Succeeds Like Success in Iraq
by James Dunnigan

Another war with Iraq? It wouldn't be like the 1991 conflict. Today's Iraq is weaker militarily. Iraq's ground forces have shrunk to 400,000 men, 2,000 tanks, 3,000 other armored vehicles, organized into 23 divisions and 11 brigades. Six divisions and four brigades belong to the Republican Guard, the best-equipped and most loyal troops. There's no navy to speak of and fewer than 200 combat aircraft available for service.

Morale is low among Iraqi troops. Memories of the hosing they got during the 1991 war, plus the efficient defeat of the Taliban in 2001, give Iraqi generals and troops little hope of winning many battles. Moreover, most of the armed forces are of questionable loyalty. Only the hundred thousand men of the Republican Guard, and a similar number in various police and security outfits, can be counted on to fight energetically. Everything depends on what kind of attack is made on Iraq.

Iraqis remember that the last time Iraq was invaded, by two British divisions to overthrow a pro-German government in 1941, it was all over in a few weeks. Iraqis know that it's been over a thousand years since an Arab army defeated a non-Arab one.

There will be postwar problems with Kurdish separatists and many factions among Arab Iraqis. But the rest of the world will have little to complain about. No one will oppose a free Iraq. Nothing succeeds like success in Iraq.

If it was going to be a cakewalk, and the Iraqis would shower victorious American troops with roses, how did the PNAC Petroleum Pirate Posse Planetary Plunder Plan come to this sorry state:


We’re Losing World War IV
How to get back to the road to victory.
By Barbara Lerner
August 04, 2006

The Shiite mullahs who rule Iran and have seized the leadership of the Islamofascist war against us are as dangerous an enemy as America has ever faced. Today, Iran’s emboldened mullahs are on a triumphant roll, waging a bloody, three-front proxy war against us, using the Mahdi army to assassinate dreams of peace and democracy in Iraq, using Hezbollah to blow up those same dreams in Lebanon, again, and using Hamas to make a grotesque mockery of them in the Holy Land. Now they threaten to activate Hezbollah terror cells, here in America and throughout the world, to kill and maim us at home and inflict more carnage on our allies.

If America is so rough, buff, and tough, why are we losing????

Maybe because of the disdain the PNAC Petroleum Pirate Posse holds toward anyone that doesn't share their dreams.

Such disdain can only lead to overconfidence and underestimation of the difficulties involved in achieving such ambitious goals. The overconfident assumed that Iraq would fight the same way as they did during Gulf War, which proved to be an insane disaster. The underestimators didn't plan on a change in tactics that would prove to be much more effective against a muscle-bound military.

In addition, King George's bold boast - "If you aren't with us, you're against us!" - isn't playing well in the capitals of the region:


U.S. Watches Dreams of Transformation Dissolve
Analysis by Jim Lobe
Contributed by: arch_stanton
August 09 2006

Entering the fourth week of war between Lebanon's Hezbollah militia and Israel, the George W. Bush administration's ambitions to transform the Arab Middle East into a pro-Western, more democratic region are fading fast.
Not only is Washington's thus-far staunch support for Israel losing Arab 'hearts and minds' at an astonishing pace, but the 'moderate' governments and non-governmental forces which the administration had hoped would act as catalysts for reform are increasingly isolated across the region, according to Middle East specialists.
"I have never seen the United States being so demonised or savaged by Arab commentators, by Arab politicians," Hisham Melham, veteran Washington correspondent for Lebanon's An-Nahar newspaper, told a conference this week at the Brookings Institution, an influential think tank.

Even Hezbollah's fiercest Lebanese foe, Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, who during the 'Cedar Revolution' praised Bush's transformation strategy as 'the start of a new Arab world' comparable to the fall of the Berlin Wall, told the Financial Times this week that he was forced to support the Shia militia against 'brutal Israeli aggression' that would result in the weakening of the central government and the strengthening of Hezbollah and, through it, Syria and Iran.

Now, Israel's onslaught against Hezbollah, which has included the destruction of key infrastructure throughout the country, as well as Shia strongholds in southern Lebanon and south Beirut, has quite possibly dealt a lethal blow to the government of the moderate, pro-Western Prime Minister Fouad Siniora, even as it has boosted the popularity of Hezbollah -- contrary to the initial expectations in both Washington and Tel Aviv.

"A fact America and Israel must understand is that as long as there is aggression and occupation, there will be resistance and popular support for the resistance," [Jordan's King] Abdullah, arguably Washington's closest Arab ally, said Thursday. [His mother was born in America!]

"Unfortunately, Israeli policy...has contributed to the rise in the wave of extremism in the Arab world, and this war has come to weaken the voices of moderation,'' he went on, warning that even if Israel destroyed Hezbollah in Lebanon -- an increasingly unlikely prospect -- , "a new Hezbollah would emerge, maybe in Jordan, Syria or Egypt" unless a comprehensive peace settlement was reached.

Hezbollah could also reappear somewhere else:

In Iraq, where Washington is currently spending nearly seven billion dollars a month, a series of US-organised elections appears only to have hastened the country's descent into a brutal sectarian civil war, a scenario conceded by two of Washington's top generals Thursday as having become increasingly possible.

"Sectarian violence probably is as bad as I've seen it, in Baghdad in particular," Gen. John Abizaid, the head of U.S. Central Command, told a Senate hearing here. "If not stopped, it is possible that Iraq could move toward civil war."

His remarks were echoed by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Gen. Peter Pace...

While faction leader Moqtada al-Sadr's Mehdi Army, which battled U.S. forces in 2004, has been holding big anti-U.S. demonstrations in Baghdad since the Israeli offensive began in mid-July, Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani, the single strongest and most influential voice for moderation in Iraq's Shia community, warned last Sunday after a particularly deadly Israeli air strike in which dozens of civilians were killed in Qana that 'dire consequences will befall the region...if an immediate ceasefire in this Israeli aggression is not imposed.'

According to Juan Cole, a Middle East expert at the University of Michigan and president of the U.S. Middle East Studies Association (MESA), Sisanti's warning was aimed directly at the United States. "Sistani could call massive anti-U.S. and anti-Israel demonstrations," noted Cole.

"Given Iraq's profound political instability, this development could be extremely dangerous," he wrote on his blog.

"The U.S. is already not winning against a Sunni Arab insurgency...
If 16 million Shiites turned on the U.S.
because of its wholehearted support for Israel's actions in Lebanon,
the U.S. military mission in Iraq
could quickly become completely and urgently untenable."

But never fear, Bu$hCo foolishness is here! This report indicates that an increase in the regional tensions is planned:


Sending Turkish Troops to Lebanon Could Unleash New Bloodshed
by Harut Sassounian
08.09.2006

The disastrous situation in the Middle East is about to get even worse, thanks to officials in Washington who have other agendas than bringing peace to the region. David Ignatius revealed in his July 21 column in the Washington Post that the Bush administration, within days of the outbreak of hostilities, started pushing the idea of deploying a multinational "stabilization force" in southern Lebanon, composed of troops from Turkey and several other countries.

Unlike a traditional United Nations peacekeeping force, this would be a robust peace-enforcement unit that would be ready to shoot it out with Hezbollah fighters or anyone else in their way.

[M]ost Arabs view with deep concern the strategic alliance between Israel and Turkey. These two countries along with the United States conduct periodic joint military exercises in eastern Mediterranean. Consequently, Turkish troops are not looked upon as a neutral party between the Arabs and Israelis.

The United States and Britain, with their forces bogged down in Iraq and Afghanistan, and unwelcome in Lebanon due to their tendentious approach to the Middle East conflict, are looking for others to die in place of their soldiers. It is simply unacceptable that in the pursuit of their political agendas, the neocons in Washington encourage sending Turkish troops to Lebanon.

The Turkish Daily News quoted a Washington analyst stating that sending Turkish troops to Lebanon "involves a major risk of serious casualties while doing somebody else's work." The international community should not allow such irresponsible action that would bring more bloodshed to Lebanon rather than peace and stability.

Turkish officials, on the other hand, ... are more interested in extending Turkey's influence in the Middle East than bringing peace to Lebanon. Turks know that, up until a century ago, Lebanon was a part of the Ottoman Empire.

Unfortunately for the Turks,
the people of Lebanon have not forgotten
the despotic rule of that infamous Empire.
The ancestors of the inhabitants of today's Lebanon, be they Syrians, Lebanese, Palestinians, Armenians or Kurds suffered untold deprivations and outright massacres under that repressive Ottoman regime.

Another serious concern is the appearance of Turkish troops in a country with a sizable Armenian population --the direct descendants of the 1.5 million Armenians massacred and expelled during the 1915 Genocide. The stationing of thousands of Turkish troops in the proximity of a large Armenian community, for the first time since 1915, contains the ingredients of a bloody clash in the making.

In the process of trying to quell one conflict,
the Bush administration is sowing the seeds of a new confrontation.
The other problem is that the Turkish soldiers and the people of southern Lebanon belong to two different, often rival, Islamic sects. The Turks are Sunni, while the Hezbollah fighters and their followers are Shia.
Fortunately, not everyone in Turkey is as eager as Prime Minister Recep Tayyıp Erdogan to send Turkish soldiers to southern Lebanon. Several opposition leaders have expressed their objection to Turkey entering "such a swamp."
An international force is probably necessary to maintain the peace on the Lebanese-Israeli border, but does it have to include a problematic Turkish contingent? There are plenty of other countries that could send troops to Lebanon without risking a confrontation with the natives.

When Turkey offered to contribute troops to the coalition in Iraq, the Iraqi government, despite pressure from Washington, wisely refused to accept them, in order to avoid clashes between Turkish soldiers and Iraqi Kurds. The Lebanese government should refuse them likewise.

As if they will have a choice with an Israeli holding an American gun to their heads!

For a while now, many bloggers and real-world columnists have been warning about how the excessive borrowing by Bu$hco represents an Achilles' Heel, vulnerable to any nation whose assets are huge (say, for instance - oh, I don't know - CHINA???) to take us down once and for all. According to this author, not only is our economy extremely unstable, he sees that a major American economic decline could prove to be a good thing:


America needs adjusting
An economic slowdown in the US would be good news for the rest of us.
by Bill Emmott
August 9, 2006

America, at last, shows signs of slowing down. It couldn't go on growing at 3.5-4% a year, living on debt, consumer spending and rising house prices for ever. Higher interest rates are halting the housing market and will probably dampen consumer spending too. If consumers truly go on strike and companies cut their investments, this might lead to an American recession.

Even if it did produce a true recession in the world's largest economy, it need not mean doom for the rest of the world. It accounts for 30% of world output, that's all. Other countries do trade with each other, too, rather than just shipping to Wal-Mart.

Although an American recession would hurt the rest of us, the pain should be bearable. Indeed, it would be good news, not bad. Economists and other pundits have been demanding an "adjustment" from the US for years, to rid the world of its huge financial imbalances. That is what a US recession would be: a much-needed adjustment.

It isn't just the economy which is in reality another country's property - your government is also. Knowledge of this has led a known conservative to express the ultimate Bu$hCo heresy:


THE SHAME OF BEING AN AMERICAN
By Paul Craig Roberts, Assistant Secretary of the Treasury in the Reagan administration.
04/08/2006

Do you know that Israel is engaged in ethnic cleansing in southern Lebanon? Israel has ordered all the villagers to clear out. Israel then destroys their homes and murders the fleeing villagers. That way there is no one to come back and nothing to which to return, making it easier for Israel to grab the territory, just as Israel has been stealing Palestine from the Palestinians.

Do you know that one-third of the Lebanese civilians murdered by Israel’s attacks on civilian residential districts are children? That is the report from Jan Egeland, the emergency relief coordinator for the UN. He says it is impossible for help to reach the wounded and those buried in rubble, because Israeli air strikes have blown up all the bridges and roads.

Considering how often (almost always) Israel misses Hizbollah targets and hits civilian ones, one might think that Israeli fire is being guided by US satellites and US military GPS. Don’t be surprised at US complicity. Why would the puppet be any less evil than the puppet master?

Of course, you don’t know these things, because the US print and TV media do not report them.
Because Bush is so proud of himself, you do know that he has blocked every effort to stop the Israeli slaughter of Lebanese civilians. Bush has told the UN "NO." Bush has told the European Community "NO." Bush has told the pro-American Lebanese prime minister "NO." Twice. Bush is very proud of his firmness.
He is enjoying Israel’s rampage and wishes he could do the same thing in Iraq.
Does it make you a Proud American that "your" president gave Israel the green light to drop bombs on convoys of villagers fleeing from Israeli shelling, on residential neighborhoods in the capital of Beirut and throughout Lebanon, on hospitals, on power plants, on food production and storage, on ports, on civilian airports, on bridges, on roads, on every piece of infrastructure on which civilized life depends? Are you a Proud American? Or are you an Israeli puppet?
On July 20, "your" House of Representatives voted 410-8 in favor of Israel’s massive war crimes in Lebanon. Not content with making every American complicit in war crimes, "your" House of Representatives, according to the Associated Press, also "condemns enemies of the Jewish state."

Who are the "enemies of the Jewish state"?

They are the Palestinians whose land has been stolen by the Jewish state, whose homes and olive groves have been destroyed by the Jewish state, whose children have been shot down in the streets by the Jewish state, whose women have been abused by the Jewish state.

They are Palestinians who have been walled off into ghettos, who cannot reach their farm lands or medical care or schools, who cannot drive on roads through Palestine that have been constructed for Israelis only.

They are Palestinians whose ancient towns have been invaded by militant Zionist "settlers" under the protection of the Israeli army who beat and persecute the Palestinians and drive them out of their towns.

They are Palestinians who cannot allow their children outside their homes because they will be murdered by Israeli "settlers."

The Palestinians who confront Israeli evil are called "terrorists."

When Bush forced free elections on Palestine, the people voted for Hamas. Hamas is the organization that has stood up to the Jewish state. This means, of course, that Hamas is evil, anti-semitic, un-American and terrorist. The US and Israel responded by cutting off all funds to the new government. Democracy is permitted only if it produces the results Bush and Israel want.

Israelis never practice terror. Only those who are in Israel’s way are terrorists.
Another enemy of the Jewish state is Hizbollah. Hizbollah is a militia of Shia Muslims created in 1982 when Israel first invaded Lebanon. During this invasion the great moral Jewish state arranged for the murder of refugees in refugee camps. The result of Israel’s atrocities was Hizbollah, which fought the Israeli army, defeated it, and drove it, with its tail between its legs, out of Lebanon. Today Hizbollah not only defends southern Lebanon but also provides social services such as orphanages and medical care.
To cut to the chase,
the enemies of the Jewish state are
any Muslim country not ruled by an American puppet
friendly to Israel.
Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and the oil emirates have sided with Israel against their own kind, because they are dependent either on American money or on American protection from their own people. Sooner or later these totally corrupt governments that do not represent the people they rule will be overthrown. It is only a matter of time.

Indeed Bush and Israel may be hastening the process in their frantic effort to overthrow the governments of Syria and Iran. Both governments have more popular support than Bush has, but the White House Moron doesn’t know this. The Moron thinks Syria and Iran will be "cakewalks" like Iraq, where ten proud divisions of the US military are tied down by a few lightly armed insurgents.

If you are still a Proud American,
consider that your pride is doing nothing good for Israel
or for America.
On July 20 when "your" House of Representatives, following "your" US Senate, passed the resolution in support of Israel’s war crimes, the most powerful lobby in Washington, the American Israeli Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), quickly got out a press release proclaiming "The American people overwhelming support Israel’s war on terrorism and understand that we must stand by our closest ally in this time of crisis."

The truth is that Israel created the crisis by invading a country with a pro-American government. The truth is that the American people do not support Israel’s war crimes, as the CNN quick poll results make clear and as was made clear by callers into C-Span.

Despite the Israeli spin on news provided by US "reporting," a majority of Americans do not approve of Israeli atrocities against Lebanese civilians.

Hizbollah is located in southern Lebanon. If Israel is targeting Hizbollah, why are Israeli bombs falling on northern Lebanon? Why are they falling on Beirut? Why are they falling on civilian airports? On schools and hospitals?
Now we arrive at the main point.

When the US Senate and House of Representatives pass resolutions in support of Israeli war crimes and condemn those who resist Israeli aggression, the Senate and House confirm Osama bin Laden’s propaganda that America stands with Israel against the Arab and Muslim world. Indeed, Israel, which has one of the world’s largest per capita incomes, is the largest recipient of US foreign aid. Many believe that much of this "aid" comes back to AIPAC, which uses it to elect "our" representatives in Congress.

This perception is no favor to Israel, whose population is declining, as the smart ones have seen the writing on the wall and have been leaving. Israel is surrounded by hundreds of millions of Muslims who are being turned into enemies of Israel by Israel’s actions and inhumane policies.

The hope in the Muslim world has always been that the United States would intervene in behalf of compromise and make Israel realize that Israel cannot steal Palestine and turn every Palestinian into a refugee. This has been the hope of the Arab world. This is the reason our puppets have not been overthrown. This hope is the reason America still had some prestige in the Arab world.

The House of Representatives resolution,
bought and paid for by AIPAC money,
is the final nail in the coffin
of American prestige in the Middle East.
It shows that America is, indeed, Israel’s puppet, just as Osama bin Laden says, and as a majority of Muslims believe.

With hope and diplomacy dead, henceforth America and Israel have only tooth and claw. The vaunted Israeli army could not defeat a rag tag militia in southern Lebanon. The vaunted US military cannot defeat a rag tag, lightly armed, insurgency drawn from a minority of the population in Iraq, insurgents, moreover, who are mainly engaged in civil war against the Shia majority.

What will the US and its puppet master do? Both are too full of hubris and paranoia to admit their terrible mistakes. Israel and the US will either destroy from the air the civilian infrastructure of Lebanon, Palestine, Syria, and Iran so that civilized life becomes impossible for Muslims, or the US and Israel will use nuclear weapons to intimidate Muslims into acquiescence to Israel’s desires.

The complicity of the American public in these heinous crimes
will damn America for all time in history.

Just like Nazi Germany will never be forgotten - or forgiven.

Muslim genocide in one form or another is the professed goal of the neoconservatives who have total control over the Bush administration. Neocon godfather Norman Podhoretz has called for World War IV (in neocon thinking WW III was the cold war) to overthrow Islam in the Middle East, deracinate the Islamic religion and turn it into a formalized, secular ritual.

Rumsfeld’s neocon Pentagon has drafted new US war doctrine that permits pre-emptive nuclear attack on non-nuclear states.

Neocon David Horowitz says that by slaughtering Palestinian and Lebanese civilians, "Israel is doing the work of the rest of the civilized world," thus equating war criminals with civilized men.

Neocon Larry Kudlow says that "Israel is doing the Lord’s work" by murdering Lebanese, a claim that should give pause to Israel’s Christian evangelical supporters.

Where does the Lord Jesus say,
"go forth and murder your neighbors
so that you may steal their lands"?

Where indeed? He never did, at least not that I could ever find.

But then, I've never read the AIPAC version of the PNAC New Testament.

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