The war itself falls into all three categories: war crimes, crimes against humanity, crimes against the peace. To the extent that Rumsfeld bypassed the chain of command with his own "Einzatzgruppen", every act of torture is traceable to Rummie, Bush, and Cheney.A Failure of StrategyCut through the jargon and you can sum up the Rumsfeld doctrine in a few words: easy victories on the cheap! It seemed to work in Afghanistan where small, lightly armored units scouted the enemy and coordinated the air strike that killed them -fewer troops, fewer supplies, smaller investment. What went wrong was guerilla war and suicide bombers. What went wrong was a Shiite resurgence completely unforeseen by Bush, Rummie, Cheney. Cheap tactics are impotent in the face of a growing international movement unforeseen and misunderstood by Bush.
A guerilla war in Iraq, meanwhile, has devolved into unspeakable barbarism on all sides -at a time when lights are still not on for many Iraqis and clean water is still a premium.
Military commanders in the field in Iraq admit in private reports to the Pentagon the war "is lost" and that the U.S. military is unable to stem the mounting violence killing 1,000 Iraqi civilians a month.Amid talk that America is without allies or friends in Iraq, you can be sure that Bushies are desperately seeking a way out, an American "Dunkirk". But the much vaunted 'coalition of the willing' has melted away, leaving behind a bewildered, impotent US and a nonplussed UK. There is no country willing or capable of pulling Bush's fat out of the fire. "Staying the course" is Bushspeak for let's hope it works out before the elections.
Meanwhile, the massacre of Iraqi civilians at Haditha is "just the tip of the iceberg" with overstressed, out-of-control Americans soldiers pushed beyond the breaking point both physically and mentally."We are in trouble in Iraq," says retired army general Barry McCaffrey. "Our forces can't sustain this pace, and I'm afraid the American people are walking away from this war."
-Field commanders tell Pentagon Iraq war 'is lost', Doug Thompson, Capitol Hill Blue
We have no exit strategy
We could be moving toward an American Dunkirk. In 1940 the defeated British Army in Belgium was driven back by the Germans to the French seacoast city of Dunkirk, where it had to abandon its equipment and escape across the English Channel on a fleet of civilian vessels, fishing smacks, yachts, small boats, anything and everything that could float and carry the defeated and wounded army to safety.TV pundits are now saying that it will take a million troops to win a guerrilla war against an insurgency in Iraq! It was not so long ago that pundits predicted a 90 day "war", another easy victory on the cheap! Thom Friedman asked recently: "What does being right have to do with anything?" Simply this: because Bush was dead wrong, the US is left with no good options in Iraq. No one in Bush's incompetent regime foresaw the rise of a Shiite theocracy and its inevitable alliance with Iran. Ironically and predictably, Bush will use that as a defense i.e., no one could have foreseen the rise of the Shiites!
Obviously, our forces in Iraq will not be defeated in open battle by an opposing army as happened in 1940, but there is more than one way to stumble into a military disaster. Fragmented reports out of Iraq suggest we may be on our way to finding one of them. Defeat can come from overused troops. It does not help that one by one, the remaining members of the Coalition of the Willing give every appearance of sneaking out of town.
-Nightmare Scenario, Nicholas von Hoffman
Similarly, we were told: no one could have foreseen that the levees would break!
No one could have foreseen that hijackers would use airliners.
I'll add one of my own: no one could have foreseen the rise of the "no one could have foreseen" defense for complete and utter incompetence!