Friday, June 02, 2006

What Went Wrong With the War, Daddy

In the lead up to the Iraq war I was ambivalent. Saddam was a tyrant, and I was impressed by the evidence (i.e. Tony Blair and Colin Powell) about WMDs. But, when the Budget submitted to Congress contained no lines for Afghanistan help (some principled Republicans had to add it), I turned against the war. Why? Because I knew the US would fuck up the aftermath. I was right. Here are the claims and discussions made by my interlocutors at the time.

1 W MILSTEN: September 22 2002 19:41
You would agree with this wouldn't you? If they are going to do it, I think they should do it like this and use Iraq as the seedbed of democratization in the Middle East. What do you think?
US will rebuild Iraq as democracy, says Rice
By James Harding and Richard Wolffe in Washington and James Blitz in London
Published: September 22 2002 19:41 | Last Updated: September 22 2002 19:41
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The US will be "completely devoted" to the reconstruction of Iraq as a unified, democratic state in the event of a military strike that topples Saddam Hussein, said Condoleezza Rice, US national security adviser.

As the White House has begun to consider military strategies in Iraq, Ms Rice said the US would seek a swift victory by using "sufficient force to win".

Ms Rice, speaking in an interview with the Financial Times, signalled US willingness to spend time and money rebuilding Iraq after the fall of Mr Hussein's regime.

Reinforcing the Bush administration's message that the values of freedom, democracy and free enterprise do not "stop at the edge of Islam", Ms Rice underlined US interest in the "democratisation or the march of freedom in the Muslim world".

She said of reform in places such as Bahrain, Qatar and - "to a certain extent" - Jordan: "There are a lot of reformist elements. We want to be supportive of those."

As the negotiations at the UN between US and British diplomats and their Russian and French counterparts are set to intensify this week, Ms Rice pressed the the security council for a clear resolution with effective measures of enforcement.

Leaving open the possibility of sending weapons inspectors back into Iraq, Ms Rice said: "It will be important to try and determine, in some way, whether inspections have a chance. Inspections have to presume that there is going to be some co-operation on the part of the Iraqi government."

Iraq said on Sunday it would not accept any new conditions on UN weapons inspectors. After a leadership meeting chaired by Mr Hussein, a spokesman ruled out additional conditions on inspectors following "press reports that US officials are trying to get the security council to issue new, bad resolutions".

The Pentagon and Ms Rice's national security team are understood to have presented President George W. Bush with a number of military scenarios. Military planners are said to have emphasised the need for the application of overwhelming force - possibly involving air strikes at the same time as an invasion on the ground - to achieve a rapid victory.

2. I Predict Jan 27th as ATTACK DAY

W Milsten

That seems early to me. Rumors on TV are that Condaleeza told the UN inspections team not to plan for inspections in March so it is coming very soon.
The outcome is not forseeable, but some things seem certain.
Saudi Arabia's days as a Kingdom seem numbered. Israel has much to fear from this war. Turkey will give in to American demands to use Turkey as a launching site. 85% of Turks are against American forces in Turkey, but the Turkish Army is telling them it is okay and/or good and the population trusts their army. Tony Blair might lose his job (how would that work if the labour party wants him out?)
What do you think.

3. MARCH !* 2003 [HOLT]

OK, so this is how it will play out, Saddam will lob a few goofy little artilery shells with chemicals before their source gets wiped out by US bombing. The shells will have about as much effect as a couple of broken bottles of French perfume. In otherwords, they wont be any big deal. France will use this as a reason to join in with the US, and the US will praise their assistance "when it really counted" or something like that. This is how they will settle their little public rift.

4. Sent: ME: Friday, April 11, 2003 2:50 AM

Funny, but it pisses me off when the suggestion is made that because one is opposed to war and imperialism, one is pro-Saddam!

I am glad to see the fucker dead, although I would have preferred to have seen him tried before a court. Much more satisfactory, both for the victims and for history.

I still think the aftermath is going to be awful. I will be glad to be proved wrong.


[But now its 2006, and I was proved right.]

1 comment:

Steve Muhlberger said...

Interesting that the Turks stayed out and have yet to intervene, stories about shelling over the border with Iraq nonwithstanding.

This is almost superhuman restraint. Who runs Turkish foreign policy? Does he/she give seminars?