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8 posts tagged with iraq by orthogonality.
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Not with bang?

It's been said before that the US Army is broken: in April, last December by Colin Powell and Pat Buchanan, by the head of the Army Reserve in 2005, by several generals as far back as 2004. But now, even as another Republican senator, Domenici, joins Warner, Voinovich, and Lugar in abandoning support for Bush's War, Joe Klein in Time Magazine says the end is inevitable, regardless of what politicians want:
According to the Broken Army clock, troop levels will begin to wane in March 2008, no matter what Congress decides in September; the current 20 brigade combat teams will be reduced to 15 by August 2008. There is growing speculation in the military that Bush will try to pre-empt the Petraeus testimony by announcing a gradual drawdown from 20 to 15 combat brigades later this summer.

posted by orthogonality on Jul 6, 2007 - 104 comments

It’s hard to remember, but he was once the future.

“How could this happen to someone so good, so competent?” he said. “This war made me doubt the past. Was I wrong all those years, or was he just better back then? The Donald Rumsfeld of today is not the Donald Rumsfeld I knew, but maybe I was wrong about the old Donald Rumsfeld. It’s a terrible way to end a career. It’s hard to remember, but he was once the future.”
And for comparison, How did so many smart guys make such a mess of Vietnam?
posted by orthogonality on Nov 13, 2006 - 98 comments

The Charge of the Keystone Brigade?

Smilin' Savior not winning hearts and minds. Suprisingly, in a Muslim nation where the thumbs-up sign is considered obscene, "Buddy Jesus" fails to amuse after a woman and girl are left dead in a firefight.
posted by orthogonality on Oct 2, 2006 - 69 comments

When the President Does It, That Means it is Not Illegal

"Saddam Hussein after his capture addressed the court with the same challenge that Charles I threw at his judges: ‘By what legal authority do you try me?’" "Therefore, let me know by what authority I am called hither." ...and therein trusted with a limited power to govern by and according to the laws of the land, and not otherwise;... "‘Lex is Rex’, is what they’d said in the ship money case. The king is the law, the king is above the law, and the king can’t be brought to trial." "-- the president is always right, Senator."
posted by orthogonality on Jul 12, 2006 - 76 comments

Five months plus 31 more

"The rationale for a free and democratic Iraq is as compelling today as it was three years ago.... Consider that if we retreat now, there is every reason to believe Saddamists and terrorists will fill the vacuum -- and the free world might not have the will to face them again. Turning our backs on postwar Iraq today would be the modern equivalent of handing postwar Germany back to the Nazis."

More wisdom from the man who said in 2002 "I can't tell you if the use of force in Iraq today will last five days, five weeks or five months, but it won't last any longer than that."
posted by orthogonality on Mar 18, 2006 - 99 comments

We support the troops! No numbers, please

Honoring the fallen is bad for business. Magnetic yellow "ribbons" on the SUV, good! Actual numbers, double-plus ungood!
posted by orthogonality on Dec 29, 2005 - 107 comments

Dog Gone!

Precious Pet or Tax-Payers' Property? Severely wounded in Iraq, sergeant wants to take $18,000 of Air Force equipment home on leash.
posted by orthogonality on Nov 20, 2005 - 54 comments

Insert obvious George Santayana quote here

"We are here to hand over to you the power in order to avoid bloodshed." Today is the thirtieth anniversary of the Fall of Saigon.

A secret plan to end the war. After the rewarding the Vietnam war's technocratic architect with the Presidency of the World Bank, after the twin failures of President Nixon's "madman plan", to scare the Soviet Union into concessions over Vietnam out of fear of Nixon's insanity, and of "Vietnamization", turning over responsibility for the war to the South Vietnamese, the North nevertheless won the war.

Disposable helicopters. Operation Frequent Wind, the chaotic evacuation of the American Embassy, brought to a close fifteen years of American hubris. Karl Marx, who got little else right, observed "History repeats itself, the first as tragedy, then as farce."
posted by orthogonality on Apr 30, 2005 - 50 comments

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