March 08, 2006

Operation Iraqi Freedom - Or, how pocked up are we?

Unfortunately Saddam had plenty of time during the long buildup prior to the war to plot his course and intentionally amplify havoc (which was increased post-war by the actions of neighbors such as Iran and Syria). But chaos and anarchy were simmering under the surface anyway, and their extent was probably underestimated.

I've given many brain hours to this subject and the ramifications thereof. I've traced the progenitors of this "multilateral" strategy quite a few chains back, with the important people being Colin Powell and Blair, the people who Bush actually listened to as opposed to his "unilateralist" critics.

My conclusions are not a shining light. For one thing, not only did the 6 something or more months give Saddam enough time to plan his Fedayeen and Baathist infrastructure for a Black Hawk Mogadishu style guerrila warfare It also prevented the Shock and Awe necessary to win a war. The fact that the news media toted up Shock and Awe as something popular the American people would love to see, support, and cheer on, was part of the systematic propaganda compaign designed to demoralize Americans while France humiliated us in the UN and Saddam planned to humiliate us by killing us Black Hawk Down style.

The thing is, he failed, Like all retarded plans, it never had a chance of working to save Saddam and his henchemen. What it did do was allow foreign terroists and nation-states like Syria and Iran, who had an interest in Iraq and preventing it from becoming a US ally and launching point for military bases and invasion forces, to create a true guerrila war. Because the arms caches, the criminals Saddam released, and all manner of cash deposits could not have saved Saddam, but it could be used by other people and by Baathists on the run to cause chaos and death for their own purposes.

The generals were so focused on the war warplan, that they forgot that the enemy's plan was for after the war and that this was what they should have planned against in terms of contingency plans and backup plans and fallback positions. Our military brass is not dumb, they just tended to fight the last war, which was Gulf War I for all intents and purposes. They thought all they had to do was crush Saddam's military like last time and then we'd just cruise on in like we should have done back in the first GW, and everything would be all right. What they didn't realize or didn't want to realize, was that this war ain't the last war. In fact, most wars aren't anywhere near close to the last war. Bush, with his totally trusting personality of the military, and his total distaste of micromanagement, didn't question anything the Generals did. When the Generals told Bush this and that was going to happen and this should be done, Bush did it and didn't ask much of anything since Bush didn't intend to change anything. (Edit, obviously the State Dep couldn't even do what they told the President they would do.)

If someone had told Bush that the military was never designed to EMpire build, which was what was actually going to have to happen, the American people would not have been caught so off guard. With the stories of Shock and Awe, with the statues falling down, cheering Iraqis, and all this shit and shizza, the American people were at an all time morale high. And then came the drop of the other shoe. IEDs started blowing up, this and that was killing American troops, then Fallujah, and the morale of the American people kept getting lower, lower, and lower. The systematic shock of such morale degradation from such a morale high, is totally devastating. And the civilians in America had never taken psychological defense courses or been trained using US military discipline to withstand chaos and confusion in war. We got slaughtered, and even with the victories with the Iraqis going to vote, it is not enough. Too many people doubt the Iraqis, as too many Iraqis doubt the Americans. The troops have much higher morale because they get to actually do their job and fight the enemy. They see the sacrifices by Iraqis, they know the realities and the possibilities. We don't, for the most part, we have to get most of our news second hand from the troops themselves. The ones the Army Information Department lets happen that is.

The truth of Operation Iraqi Freedom requires the criticism of George W. Bush, but because most of the current criticism is so insane, supporters of GWBush tend not to want to come up with their own criticism of Bush. It is not that most Republicans don't support the President or feel betrayed, like the fake liberals felt betrayed by their own media of cheering Iraqis, it is just that Republicans have this feeling but they don't have any avenue to discover why they feel the way they do about the war and the President. That is simply because the Democrats betrayed America, in betraying their duty to be the loyal opposition, they have sealed off the only avenue of self-improvement available to America as a whole. Which is criticizing past actions and improving upon them. We could not do this in the face of Michael Moore and Dick Durbin and various other apparati. We could not criticize the President and improve upon his agenda, simply because of the fact that we were too busy defending him from his insane critics. Our energies, instead of being united as they were in World War II under Roosevelt and Truman, both Democrats for more than 5 terms, were instead devoted to fighting ourselves. And the terroists learned, they understood, and they adapted. While we were busy fighting the domestic enemies in our midst, the foreign enemies were gearing up to slaughter women, children, and anyone else that got in their way. If our military hadn't been as strong, as honorable, and as virtuous as it is, Iraq would have exploded and there would have been nothing to pick up afterwards for "reconstruction".

So now we get people like Aqua, and they're still in the way, just not as much as they were before since we have blogs and real information now. But the damage is done, and it is irreversible.

It puts me in mind of the end of the Soviet Union. Back in those days, when I didn't spend so much time thinking about politics, events there caught my attention nevertheless. When the Soviet Union fell in such a surprising and sudden way, a fair amount of anarchy ensued rather than the more hopeful visions of the future that many had shared. Crime, for instance, had never been a problem in Soviet Russia; now it was a huge and even sometimes controlling factor.

The movie Lord of War is a very interesting, and I think honest, portrayal of chaos and war. The entire Soviet apparatus of weapons now had no enemy to fight against, since they lost. Yet the US didn't control Soviet territory. So all the Hind attack helicopters, RPGs, AK-47s, and etc were sold to international arms dealers. And they profited mightily from wars in Africa and the Middle East. As the main char put it, he sold Jewish made Uzis to Muslims, which then probably used them to kill Jews in Palestine.

It's one reason why most of the weapons in Iraq ain't from the US, Soviet and Chinese surplus weapons are totally less expensive and totally legal to buy, as opposed to the strict sanctions and laws forbiding American sale of weapons to such and such. And given the corruption in China and Russia, arms sales were basically everywhere you could look. They'd sell the weapons, and then they'd order the factories in Russia to make more. They're still doing it too, the Russian Mob probably has a huge arms sale international wise.

Hell, a lot of Americans already have Ak-47s in dug out weapons caches in somebody's backyard. Not only was the Ak-47 perfect in the maintenance sense, there were also a lot of them to get rid of.

You've got to make the insurgency a very unattractive profession to these people, who are not motivated by religious ideology.”

Mass executions and making examples of people are very effective tools in crushing terroist and guerrila warfare organizatins, whether that is Iraq, Syria, Iran, or even the American South back in post-Reconstruction days.

If you're not willing to do so because of whatever, then I suppose you're just going to have to watch while women, children, and men are torn apart in gang violence, tribal violence, and terrorism.

Without the Witness Protection Agency here in the US, mob violence would have reigned supreme. And there is no WPA large enough to cover all the people in Iraq, which is kind of the problem. While you can't protect everyone through relocation, you can slaughter and kill off the terrorists if you really decided to do it. All power have limits, and it usually has to do with how you may use and apply it.

We keep doing this till people get tired and start helping us. Our message: ‘We don't give in—we're not going away, so work with us.'

Effective, for when the enemy aren't terroists and hardcore fanatics and supported by Syria and Iran. Not so effective, as we can see, when they are.

To fight a multi-tiered guerrila warfare insurgency requires a layered approach. Separate the hardcore from the softcore, make deals with the softcore, give them asylum. For the hardcore, take off the gloves. For the really hardcore, start executions right away and demonstrations of your side's will and power.

We've somehow stopped at the second tier. Which means we leave the Syrian Baathists, the Iranian insurgents, and the Al-Qaeda terrorists pretty much alone. If Bush does allow our military to take those guys on, and he does, then he told them to treat them with Geneva Conventions and the same way we treated local Iraqi insurgencies. Now, that might work in 20 years, but I don't think Bush is going to be around in 20 years. But most of America would be around in 20 years and so would the Iraqis who would have to live in terror for the 20 years it would take Bush's tactics to actually work.

Never fight an attrition war with idiots who don't care how many people die. Just don't do it. Avoid it at all costs, preferablly to the enemy and none to your own side.

Btw, terrorists aren't gangs, they don't care about their territory or community. If you want to deter them, make them die in very painful ways and show everyone else what will happen. Two can play the video star got hacked by a big knife, game. Hardcore tactics for the hardcore people. That's just common sense. The punishment fits the crime. Death penalty for murderers and serial rapists, community service for misdemeanors. Even President Bush can figure that out.

And the answer unfortunately, was that neither USAID nor the State Department had the money or the bureaucratic configuration to fight a joint battle with the military against the chaos of post-Saddam Iraq.

I could have told you people that even before I read the article. Which I kind of did, since I'm reading this and commenting to Neo's post at the same time. We do not have an Empire building bureacratic setup. We just don't. We don't go into foreign countries, setup a Governorship, recruit locals into the US army, setup a security apparatus loyal to the Governor, and then have the people vote for incorporation as the 59th State of America. America ain't an Empire, we don't practice Colonialism, and that's why the Iraqis are suffering. We do not the experience or the willpower to help them as we could have, with the power at our disposal. We are learning at the same time the Iraqis are learning. It is a painful experience for both of us. You see it on the news everytime, and you hear it from the wails of American and Iraqi mothers who hold their children's mangled body in their hands. Or maybe you don't, and that's sort of the point, you don't see it but it happens. It happens everyday, and if you ever felt fully their pain, you would go insane. FOr man is not intended to feel the pain of a thousand losses at once, in full HDTV detail.

The answer--the long, hard slog of an answer, although it only takes a sentence of Wretchard's to state--is, "learning how to use force to allow indigenous order to emerge."

The Japanese with their "when there is a will, there is a way" and the United States Marine Corps' saying that "pain is weakness leaving the body" could teach the bureacrats much in this war. But, they won't listen, and the media doesn't understand enough to report it, even if they had wanted to.

On September 11, it became to me for the first time--although in retrospect it should have been clear far earlier--that havoc was abroad, and the dogs of war had been loosed.

In an age without the internet, and reliance on legacy media, there is a big problem if our leaders are behind the times. They still are, but with the internet and tools available, American ingenuity and independence are functioning at full speed. With or without the President's approval and endorsement.

I suppose if I had studied the Soviet selling of weapons to the world, I might have gotten a drift of the chaos to happen before 9/11. But I wasn't paying attention, to tell the truth. I didn't even know what the R and D stood for in front of people's names the few times I did watch the news. Ignorance tends to be curable however, death is however, not so curable.

Will, Buckley, Derbyshire, Fukuyama

They don't matter at all.

opposed the war is because they are deeply skeptical of the concept of nation-building and because they question whether the US really has the will

I question whether they actually have the will, which obviously they don't. The blind telling everyone else that they are the blind ones, I see.

So, from my point of view it's not a question of providing a "dose of powerful medicine" it's a question of WHAT medicine?
You've been asking the "what solution" question for awhile now. It's obvious that you don't have any solutions, but you also don't like the solutions Bush has implemented.

Which to me, doesn't seem useful but a hindrance.

OK, history won't buy it, but that's not the problem.

History usually will be consistent with what I wrote in the beginning. It's how historians think, they like to connect the dots, and so do I for that matter.

As Wretchard points out, the military has shown great adaptability to the changing conditions they have encountered.

We have the best military in the entire history of the god damn planet, what did you expect? So long as the bureacrats and the lawyers get out of the way, which President Bush tends to support, the military will do a magnificent job. So long as you don't talk about crap like the Geneva Conventions, that is. That's a policy issue, not a military one.

And it shows, boy, does it show.

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