Bush's final gamble: Giving Iraq a dictator? - Mercedes-Benz Forum

LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-25-2006, 04:10 PM Thread Starter
BenzWorld Elite
firstmb's Avatar
Date registered: Jan 2005
Vehicle: 2006 ML350
Location: Chicago, IL
Posts: 1,434
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
(Thread Starter)
Bush's final gamble: Giving Iraq a dictator?

US-backed dictator may not seem like such a bad option in Mesopotamia. And I feel Rumsfeld will be telling himself he knew it all along..


The news was buried in a New York Times story last week but it confirmed what others in the Washington chattering classes have been observing lately.
The context is that the White House has been inviting outsiders in to the Oval Office to discuss strategy in Iraq. The new chief of staff Josh Bolten has apparently been trying to pierce the intellectual cocoon in which the president comfortably resides. Bush family consigliere James Baker has already been asked to rescue the president’s failed Iraq policy.

But last week the new nugget: an anonymous “military affairs expert” attended a White House briefing and reported: “Senior administration officials have acknowledged to me that they are considering alternatives other than democracy. Everybody in the administration is being quite circumspect, but you can sense their own concern that this is drifting away from democracy.”

Indeed. The number of civilian casualties in what can now only be called Iraq’s civil war grows with each month. The thousands of innocent Iraqis killed in the past month dwarfs the civilian losses in Lebanon and Israel. The attempt by Nouri al-Maliki’s government to put down sectarian warfare in Baghdad has failed, requiring more US troops in the capital and thus abandoning the heartland of the insurgency, Anbar, to the enemy. General John Abizaid, head of American forces in the Middle East, told the Senate earlier this month that violence in Iraq is “probably as bad as I’ve seen it, in Baghdad in particular”.

Last Wednesday more grim statistics emerged. The number of roadside bomb attacks are at an all-time high. In July 1,666 “improvised explosive devices” exploded and 959 were discovered before they went off. In January 1,454 bombs exploded or were found. That’s the wrong direction, and it’s after an elected unity government has been installed.

A Pentagon official anonymously told the press last week: “The insurgency has got worse by almost all measures, with insurgent attacks at historically high levels. The insurgency has more public support and is demonstrably more capable in numbers of people active and in its ability to direct violence than at any point in time.”

Remember Dick Cheney’s comments about the insurgency being in its “last throes”? Those words have become as credible as the president’s denial of torture as an interrogation policy authorised by the White House.

There comes a point at which even Bush’s platinum-strength levels of denial have to bow to reality. That point may be now. Why else would he be reading Albert Camus’s existentialist masterpiece, The Stranger, in Texas?

Recently Bush has been wondering why the Shi’ites in southern Iraq have displayed such ingratitude to the man who liberated them from Saddam. It doesn’t seem to have occurred to him that a populace terrorised by sectarian murder, nonexistent government and near anarchy might feel angry at the man who rid them of dictatorship but then refused to provide a minimal level of security for the aftermath. And so, the frustrated born-again neocon in Bush may be ceding to the caucus of those dubbed the “to-hell-with-them” hawks.

This conservative caucus never liked the neocon argument for removing Saddam. They didn’t like nation building and didn’t believe that Iraqis were capable of democracy. They wanted to remove a WMD threat but, most of all, they wanted to strike terror into the heart of the enemy by showing what US military might could do.

Depose Saddam, remove the weapons, install a client dictator and leave as much rubble behind: that was the game plan. It would deter the Iranians and leave a light military footprint. It had Donald Rumsfeld written all over it and it helps explain a lot about the Bush administration’s dogged refusal to add more troops in the first few months after the invasion.

Rumsfeld and Cheney may well be the key proponents of this argument. It is, of course, stupid. When you are dealing with a generational struggle to defang Islamist extremism, your central weapon is winning over moderate Muslims and Arabs. You do the reverse by bombing a country into chaos and then leaving.

When one of the biggest threats in a terrorised world are failed states in the Middle East, why create another one in Iraq? When western unity and intelligence sharing is essential, why pursue a strategy that is almost guaranteed to divide allies and unite all Muslims under the extremist banner?

What’s done is done, however. But the Bush administration knows that its Iraq debacle is central to its legacy and future. What’s interesting in the latest polls — in the middle of the Israel-Lebanon war and the foiled terror plot that shut Heathrow — is how Iraq is still more important to Americans than the more general issue of terrorism.

Pollster John Zogby opined: “President Bush’s numbers mainly reflect the country’s thinking on the war in Iraq, and most people have made up their minds that the war overall has not been worth the loss of American lives. Terrorism is an important issue to Americans, but when it comes to judging Bush’s presidency, their decision is based largely on Iraq.”

Pessimism about Iraq has deepened on every front since the killing of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi. Last week’s Pew poll found that 63% believed that the US was “losing ground” in preventing a civil war in Iraq. Among Republicans, the numbers have dropped 16% on this question in the past two months alone. More worryingly, a clear majority now believes that Bush is not a “strong leader” and “not trustworthy”, two key qualities Bush once had commanding support on.

And anti-incumbent feeling is stronger than at any time since the Republican takeover of Congress in 1994. One poll last week had Bush’s ratings at a new low of 34%. Crunch time approaches.

If the Republicans are to recover by November 2008, let alone November 2006, they have to get Iraq behind them. They have to show progress or provide some credible strategy for victory that is not simply more of the gruelling same. Bush doesn’t have one.

The to-hell-with-them hawks do. And they’re gaining traction. Before too long a compliant US-backed dictator may not seem like such a bad option in Mesopotamia. And I feel Rumsfeld will be telling himself he knew it all along.



Thanks, D.

2006 ML 350 - Black, Appearance Package, Navigation System, Entertainment Package, Sunroof Package, Heated Seats, IPod Integration
firstmb is offline  
Sponsored Links
post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-25-2006, 04:54 PM
BenzWorld Elite
Shabah's Avatar
Date registered: Nov 2004
Vehicle: 300c (1956)
Location: 19 05'40.0 N, 49 49'09 E
Posts: 2,773
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Is that what you Americans say "don't shit where you eat" ???????????
Shabah is offline  
post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-25-2006, 05:02 PM
CH4S Artist
Teutone's Avatar
Date registered: Sep 2004
Vehicle: 1985 500SEC, 1991 190E 2.6.
Location: Los Angeles / Hannover Germany
Posts: 33,436
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Quoted: 937 Post(s)
Lifetime Premium Member
At one time, America used to have a compliant dictator in place---- with Saddam Hussein.
Attached Images
Teutone is offline  
post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-25-2006, 07:11 PM
Will Moderate For Cigars
cmitch's Avatar
Date registered: Apr 2005
Vehicle: 2002 ML320, 2005 S430 4MATIC, 2010 F150 Crew Cab
Location: City on the TN River
Posts: 10,673
Mentioned: 3 Post(s)
Quoted: 200 Post(s)
Lifetime Premium Member
The irony is that a dictator is probably the only kind of leader that will be able to restore order in that country. It seems that Iraqis will have to be ruled by fear because that's the only rule they'll respect.

2005 S430 4Matic 'Morton' W220.183 722.671 Rest in Peace

Bells and whistles are thorns and thistles.
cmitch is online now  
post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-25-2006, 07:25 PM
Lifetime Premium Member
Shane's Avatar
Date registered: Aug 2002
Vehicle: And what was left was what was guilt was what u gave to me
Location: A cavalcade of strangers came to tear ur world apart
Posts: 41,520
Mentioned: 6 Post(s)
Quoted: 1726 Post(s)
Lifetime Premium Member
Now if we put a dictator in place again what high and mighty self righteous stand can we take next? Our name would go from mud to shit in the world view. And you know there is a hell of alot of world out there...
Shane is offline  
post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 08-25-2006, 11:01 PM
CH4S Artist
Teutone's Avatar
Date registered: Sep 2004
Vehicle: 1985 500SEC, 1991 190E 2.6.
Location: Los Angeles / Hannover Germany
Posts: 33,436
Mentioned: 11 Post(s)
Quoted: 937 Post(s)
Lifetime Premium Member
Originally Posted by cmitchprint
The irony is that a dictator is probably the only kind of leader that will be able to restore order in that country. It seems that Iraqis will have to be ruled by fear because that's the only rule they'll respect.
Damned if we do, and worse if we don't. Some here discussed this possibility in June. Forget about Democracy for Iraq. It's like expecting an infant to take care of his own needs. Our choices are the imminent break up of Iraq into at least three Countries, one of them controlled by Iran. I rather see a bastard like Saddam keeping it together, than a lunatic like Muqtada Al Sadr in power. It's neither good nor noble as in the way America likes to view itself, only pragmatic. Thanks to our brilliant leadership, that seem to be one of the few choices left. Whatever the outcome, at this stage it appears as if this will be a War without a winner.
Teutone is offline  
Sponsored Links

  Mercedes-Benz Forum > General Mercedes-Benz Forums > Off-Topic

Quick Reply

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the Mercedes-Benz Forum forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.

User Name:
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.


Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.

Email Address:


  • Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
    Thread Tools
    Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
    Email this Page Email this Page
    Display Modes
    Linear Mode Linear Mode

    Similar Threads
    Topic Author Forum Replies Last Post
    Heil Bush! "Signing statements": Dictator Wannabe Bush invents his own laws FeelTheLove Off-Topic 36 07-26-2006 09:00 PM
    Bush's new plan for "Victory in Iraq": Same old BS, more blood, more murder, more dead Americans FeelTheLove Off-Topic 19 11-30-2005 04:14 PM
    my final pictures and final thoughts on the 420SEL blue420sel W126 S,SE,SEC,SEL,SD,SDL Class 10 12-17-2004 10:13 AM
    "Happy Thanks Giving" wildponey W140 S-Class 1 11-22-2004 09:57 PM
    Harald giving the finger.... Tom Deckowski G-Class 0 03-15-2004 08:01 PM

    Posting Rules  
    You may post new threads
    You may post replies
    You may not post attachments
    You may not edit your posts

    BB code is On
    Smilies are On
    [IMG] code is On
    HTML code is Off
    Trackbacks are On
    Pingbacks are On
    Refbacks are On


    Title goes here

    video goes here
    description goes here. Read Full Story
    For the best viewing experience please update your browser to Google Chrome