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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
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The truth is out there....

Gen Sir Mike Jackson attacks US over Iraq


By Con Coughlin and Neil Tweedie
Last Updated: 12:18am BST 02/09/2007




General Sir Mike Jackson, the head of the British Army during the invasion of Iraq, has launched a scathing attack on the United States for the way it handled the post-war administration of the country.
Audio: General Sir Mike Jackson on 45 years in the Army
Your view: Who is responsible for the chaos in Iraq?
Frontline: Our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan
General Sir Mike Jackson: 'All the planning carried out by the State Department went to waste'

The former chief of the general staff said the approach taken by Donald Rumsfeld, the then US defence secretary, was "intellectually bankrupt", describing his claim that US forces "don't do nation-building" as "nonsensical".
Sir Mike's comments - made in his forthcoming autobiography Soldier, serialised exclusively in The Daily Telegraph - represent the most outspoken criticism of American military policy in Iraq to come from a senior British officer.
His attack - the first time he has revealed the depth of his anger towards the US administration - highlights the deep-seated tension between the British command and the Pentagon during the build-up to and the aftermath of the Iraq campaign in 2003.
Sir Mike, who took command of the British Army one month before US-led forces invaded Iraq, said Mr Rumsfeld was "one of those most responsible for the current situation in Iraq".
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Crucially, the general writes, he refused to deploy enough troops to maintain law and order after the collapse of Saddam's regime, and discarded detailed plans for the post-conflict administration of Iraq that had been drawn up by the US State Department.
In the book, Sir Mike says he believes the entire US approach to tackling global terrorism is "inadequate" because it relies too heavily on military power at the expense of nation-building and diplomacy.
His outspoken remarks are likely to increase tensions between the British and US military over policy in Iraq.
Last month American officials claimed that British forces had been defeated in Basra and had surrendered control of Iraq's second city to lawless militias and criminal gangs.
Speaking on the eve of the book's publication, Sir Mike last night defended the record of Britain's military deployment in Basra.
"I don't think that's a fair assessment at all," he said of claims made by American officials that UK forces had failed.
"What has happened in the south, as throughout the rest of Iraq, was that primary responsibility for security would be handed to the Iraqis once the Iraqi authorities and the coalition were satisfied that their state of training and development was appropriate.
"In the south we had responsibility for four provinces. Three of these have been handed over in accordance with that strategy. It remains just in Basra for that to happen."
Even so it emerged yesterday that the Pentagon was planning to deploy extra forces to Basra to protect Iraq's crucial oil fields amid growing fears in Washington that Britain is preparing to withdraw its forces from southern Iraq.
Sir Mike says the failure of the US-led coalition to suppress the Iraqi insurgency four years after Saddam's overthrow was down to the Pentagon's refusal to deploy enough troops. A combined force of 400,000 would be needed to control a country the size of Iraq, but even with the extra troops recently deployed for the US military's "surge" the coalition has struggled to reach half that figure.
Sir Mike is particularly critical of President Bush's decision to hand control of the post-invasion running of Iraq to the Pentagon, when all the post-war planning had been done by the State Department.
"All the planning carried out by the State Department went to waste," he writes. For Mr Rumsfeld and his neo-conservative supporters "it was an ideological article of faith that the coalition forces would be accepted as a liberating army.
"Once you had decapitated Saddam Hussein's regime, a model democratic society would inevitably emerge."
He and other senior British officers were opposed to the Pentagon's decision to disband the Iraqi army after Saddam's overthrow, a decision he says "was very short-sighted … We should have kept the Iraqi security services in being and put them under the command of the coalition."
Sir Mike also reveals that he and other senior officers had doubts about the weapons of mass destruction dossier presented by the Blair government in late 2002.
"Its release caused a stir in military circles," reveals Sir Mike, particularly the suggestion that the UK could face a threat of attack at 45 minutes' notice. "We all knew that it was impossible for Iraq to threaten the UK mainland. Saddam's Scud missiles could barely have reached our bases on Cyprus, and certainly no more distant target."
Sir Mike says he satisfied himself on the legality of invading Iraq by careful study of the relevant UN Security Council resolutions and concluded that action was "legitimate under international law without a 'second' resolution.
"Having had some part to play in putting Slobodan Milosevic into a cell in The Hague, I had no wish to be his next-door neighbour."
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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 06:47 PM Thread Starter
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From BBC just now:


Fresh UK attack on US Iraq policy

Maj Gen Tim Cross said Donald Rumsfeld ignored warnings

A second key British general has criticised US post-war policy in Iraq.
Maj Gen Tim Cross, who was the most senior UK officer involved in post-war planning, told the Sunday Mirror US policy was "fatally flawed".
His comments came after Gen Sir Mike Jackson, head of the Army during the invasion, told the Daily Telegraph US policy was "intellectually bankrupt".
John Bolton, former US ambassador to the UN, dismissed Sir Mike's criticism as "way off the mark".
The Ministry of Defence played down the comments by Sir Mike, now retired, saying he was entitled to express his opinion on his former job.
'Lack of detail'
Maj Gen Cross, also retired, said he had raised serious concerns about potential post-war problems in Iraq with the then US defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld.
But he said Mr Rumsfeld "dismissed" or "ignored" the warnings.
"Right from the very beginning we were all very concerned about the lack of detail that had gone into the post-war plan and there is no doubt that Rumsfeld was at the heart of that process," he said.
There is no doubt that with hindsight the US post-war plan was fatally flawed and many of us sensed that at the time


Maj Gen Tim Cross


"I had lunch with Rumsfeld in February in Washington - before the invasion in March 2003 - and raised concerns about the need to internationalise the reconstruction of Iraq and work closely with the United Nations."
Maj Gen Cross, 59, who was deputy head of the coalition's Office of Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance, said he also raised concerns over the number of troops available to maintain security in Iraq.
"He didn't want to hear that message," he said. "The US had already convinced themselves that following the invasion Iraq would emerge reasonably quickly as a stable democracy."
He added: "There is no doubt that with hindsight the US post-war plan was fatally flawed and many of us sensed that at the time."
'Short-sighted'
In an interview published on Saturday, Sir Mike told the Telegraph that a claim by Mr Rumsfeld's that US forces "don't do nation-building" was "nonsensical".
He criticised the decision to hand control of planning the administration of Iraq after the war to the Pentagon.
We should have kept the Iraqi security services in being

He also described the disbanding of the Iraqi army and security forces after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein as "very short-sighted".
"We should have kept the Iraqi security services in being and put them under the command of the coalition," he said.
Politicians from across the spectrum have come out in support of Sir Mike's comments, made ahead of the serialisation of his autobiography in the Telegraph.
Sir Malcolm Rifkind, Conservative former foreign secretary and defence secretary, told the BBC that Mr Rumsfeld was "incompetent".
'Extraordinary decision'
However, Mr Bolton told BBC Radio 4's PM programme that Sir Mike had "read into a version of history that simply is not supported by the evidence".
"And I can see where he'd have a parochial view from the military perspective. I don't think he saw some of the larger political debates.
"I'm not saying that we got it right in Washington because I've made my own criticisms. His just happen to be way off the mark, very simplistic, I think in a sense limited by the role that he had."



Profile: Gen Sir Mike Jackson


He said it was important to know whether Sir Mike had raised his concerns when he first had them.
The Telegraph also reports that, in his autobiography, Sir Mike says the US approach to fighting global terrorism was "inadequate" as it focused on military power rather than diplomacy and nation-building.
The US Department of Defence said: "Divergent viewpoints are a hallmark of open, democratic societies."
A spokeswoman for the US State Department said she would not comment on Sir Mike's views.
His comments follow a series of critical remarks from US officials about the British attitude towards Iraq. BBC defence correspondent Paul Wood said Sir Mike's comments may put further strain on the British-US operation in Iraq.
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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 06:55 PM
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It would be naive to assume that there is a team of idiots running U.S. operations in Iraq. Consider that this plan was essentially nurtured and hatched by the U.S. Secretary of Defense under Bush 41 / Desert Storm. Cheney may be a lot of things, but the lad is no dunce. The U.S. plan was not fatally flawed, as Sir Mike suggests, rather it had a hidden objective of establishing a substantial and permanent U.S. military presence in Iraq, which required a severe destabilization of the area in order to sell the idea as a necessity. Everything has gone pretty much according to plan, I should think.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 07:16 PM
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I don't see Sir Mikes agenda on this one other than to try and encunber those who have lorded it up over him during this campaign , Ron's opinion has long been mine , everywhere the US has trump up a war it has taking up residents , hell they are still in NZ , and that was just a southern pacific supply chain during the 2nd World war , no the plain is panning out nicely .
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 08:39 PM
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As much as I respect Ron’s political acumen, he may be making the same assumption about the GW Bush White House as Woodward and Bernstein did about the Watergate conspirators:

DEEP THROAT:
Look, forget the myths the
media's created about the White House--
the truth is, these are not very
bright guys, and things got out of
hand.

History has a way of repeating itself.
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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 08:50 PM
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I'm basing my assumption almost entirely on the intellect and experience of one Dick Cheney, who is undoubtedly extremely knowledgeable and experienced in regard to the ME and Iraq in particular. I believe it's a strong enough hook to hang my hat on, but I won't hesitate to admit that I've been wrong before.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 08:55 PM Thread Starter
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^^^^

Personally, I think Sir Mike may have missed the distinction between American 'Iraq policy' and 'stated Iraq policy'. The reason for him taking this approach remains obscure.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 08:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GermanStar
I'm basing my assumption almost entirely on the intellect and experience of one Dick Cheney, who is undoubtedly extremely knowledgeable and experienced in regard to the ME and Iraq in particular. I believe it's a strong enough hook to hang my hat on, but I won't hesitate to admit that I've been wrong before.
I think you hit the nail in the wall..or whatever

There is more than we know. Iraqi oil fields not being the last.
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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deathrattle
^^^^

Personally, I think Sir Mike may have missed the distinction between American 'Iraq policy' and 'stated Iraq policy'. The reason for him taking this approach remains obscure.
Exactly, and well he should. His efforts were based on official policy as stated, and he should be frustrated as hell. As a military man, it isn't his job to point conspiratorial fingers, but rather to stick to the facts as they were presented, and point to what appeared as incompetence.

"If spending money you don't have is the height of stupidity, borrowing money to give it away is the height of insanity." -- anon
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 09-01-2007, 10:04 PM
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The link makes some interesting reading:

An earlier post: Arab Peninsula / Iran

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

OPLAN 1002 Defense of the Arabian Peninsula
Through the end of the 1980s, the United States had no forces, bases, supplies, or infrastructure in Saudi Arabia. Forces, their equipment, and their sustainment stocks of fuel, ordnance, spare parts, and a million other things would have to be deployed into the theater, and bases established for them. Through the end of the Cold War the CENTCOM operation plan OPLAN 1002 involved Iran.

In 1987 students in the School of Advanced Military Studies (SAMS) at Fort Leavenworth [Kansas] participated in an eight-day Southwest Asia war game. The pertinent part of the scenario portrayed a takeover by anti-American rebel forces of several key cities in Iran, mostly in the southern part of the country. The rebels threatened to seize the Persian Gulf ports, and thereby shut down oil cargo out of the Persian Gulf. Twenty-three Soviet divisions from three fronts entered Iran in support of the rebels.
For complete article Op plans: http://www.globalsecurity.org/milita...oplan-1002.htm The 'brilliant' leaders in Washington choose to ignore any advice re. Iraq and in their infinite wisdom excluded the old Mid East hands in the intelligence services from the planning stages of the Iraq invasion.
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