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Thread: The horribly mismanaged war..pathetic

  1. #1

    The horribly mismanaged war..pathetic

    NEW YORK - In a rueful reflection on what might have been, an Iraqi government insider details in 500 pages the U.S. occupation's "shocking" mismanagement of his country a performance so bad, he writes, that by 2007 Iraqis had "turned their backs on their would-be liberators."



    "The corroded and corrupt state of Saddam was replaced by the corroded, inefficient, incompetent and corrupt state of the new order," Ali A. Allawi concludes in "The Occupation of Iraq," newly published by Yale University Press.

    Allawi writes with authority as a member of that "new order," having served as Iraq's trade, defense and finance minister at various times since 2003. As a former academic, at Oxford University before the U.S.-British invasion of Iraq, he also writes with unusual detachment.

    The U.S.- and British-educated engineer and financier is the first senior Iraqi official to look back at book length on his country's four-year ordeal. It's an unsparing look at failures both American and Iraqi, an account in which the word "ignorance" crops up repeatedly.

    First came the "monumental ignorance" of those in Washington pushing for war in 2002 without "the faintest idea" of Iraq's realities. "More perceptive people knew instinctively that the invasion of Iraq would open up the great fissures in Iraqi society," he writes.

    What followed was the "rank amateurism and swaggering arrogance" of the occupation, under L. Paul Bremer's Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), which took big steps with little consultation with Iraqis, steps Allawi and many others see as blunders:

    The Americans disbanded Iraq's army, which Allawi said could have helped quell a rising insurgency in 2003. Instead, hundreds of thousands of demobilized, angry men became a recruiting pool for the resistance.

    Purging tens of thousands of members of toppled President Saddam Hussein's Baath party from government, school faculties and elsewhere left Iraq short on experienced hands at a crucial time.

    An order consolidating decentralized bank accounts at the Finance Ministry bogged down operations of Iraq's many state-owned enterprises.

    The CPA's focus on private enterprise allowed the "commercial gangs" of Saddam's day to monopolize business.

    Its free-trade policy allowed looted Iraqi capital equipment to be spirited away across borders.

    The CPA perpetuated Saddam's fuel subsidies, selling gasoline at giveaway prices and draining the budget.

    In his 2006 memoir of the occupation, Bremer wrote that senior U.S. generals wanted to recall elements of the old Iraqi army in 2003, but were rebuffed by the Bush administration. Bremer complained generally that his authority was undermined by Washington's "micromanagement."

    Although Allawi, a cousin of Ayad Allawi, Iraq's prime minister in 2004, is a member of a secularist Shiite Muslim political grouping, his well-researched book betrays little partisanship.

    On U.S. reconstruction failures in electricity, health care and other areas documented by Washington's own auditors Allawi writes that the Americans' "insipid retelling of `success' stories" merely hid "the huge black hole that lay underneath."

    For their part, U.S. officials have often largely blamed Iraq's explosive violence for the failures of reconstruction and poor governance.

    The author has been instrumental since 2005 in publicizing extensive corruption within Iraq's "new order," including an $800-million Defense Ministry scandal. Under Saddam, he writes, the secret police kept would-be plunderers in check better than the U.S. occupiers have done.

    As 2007 began, Allawi concludes, "America's only allies in Iraq were those who sought to manipulate the great power to their narrow advantage. It might have been otherwise."

  2. #2
    coming soon: yellow submarine, et al. It was nice when you (guys) were away.

  3. #3
    I guess it is easier to ignore this article and book?

  4. #4
    [QUOTE=cr726]I guess it is easier to ignore this article and book?[/QUOTE]

    much easier

  5. #5
    [QUOTE=cr726]I guess it is easier to ignore this article and book?[/QUOTE]
    It's very easy to ignore both the article and book. Kind of hard to take a multihandled poster seriously, though. Maybe you guys can tell us what that's like.

  6. #6
    The article is legit. I don't care who posted it.


    [QUOTE=sackdance]It's very easy to ignore both the article and book. Kind of hard to take a multihandled poster seriously, though. Maybe you guys can tell us what that's like.[/QUOTE]

  7. #7
    This is all true, but nothing new. Bob Woodward talked about several of these points at length in [U]State of Denial[/U].

  8. #8
    [QUOTE=cr726]The article is legit. I don't care who posted it.[/QUOTE]


    [SIZE=4][B]Wouldya' believe that dialog might've worked?[/B][/SIZE]

    [IMG]http://www.jrn.columbia.edu/studentwork/cns/2002-05-08/images/shoephone.jpg[/IMG]

  9. #9
    So the surge will make this all go away?


    [QUOTE=pauliec]This is all true, but nothing new. Bob Woodward talked about several of these points at length in [U]State of Denial[/U].[/QUOTE]

  10. #10
    [QUOTE=cr726]So the surge will make this all go away?[/QUOTE]


    Make it all go away, like a magic bullet? No, of course not. The only way this surge could have been 100% successful is if it was implemented from the very beginning of the war.

    That's not to say that progress can't be made, and it is already being made because of the surge. But right now it's impossible to guess how much quality progress occurs and how long it takes to happen. And, a certain point, if no substantial progress is made by, say, July, then it's time to start pulling out.

  11. #11
    That is a unpatriotic stance.


    [QUOTE=pauliec]Make it all go away, like a magic bullet? No, of course not. The only way this surge could have been 100% successful is if it was implemented from the very beginning of the war.

    That's not to say that progress can't be made, and it is already being made because of the surge. But right now it's impossible to guess how much quality progress occurs and how long it takes to happen. And, a certain point, if no substantial progress is made by, say, July, then it's time to start pulling out.[/QUOTE]

  12. #12
    [QUOTE=cr726]That is a unpatriotic stance.[/QUOTE]


    You're an unpatriotic stance.


    There, now we both made immature comments.

  13. #13
    Sarcasm.

    [QUOTE=pauliec]You're an unpatriotic stance.


    There, now we both made immature comments.[/QUOTE]

  14. #14
    [QUOTE=cr726]Sarcasm.[/QUOTE]


    Indeed.

  15. #15
    this thread was brought to you by the insane defeatocrat libtards of America

  16. #16
    [QUOTE=pauliec]This is all true, but nothing new. Bob Woodward talked about several of these points at length in [U]State of Denial[/U].[/QUOTE]

    Excellent book: it probably is too late for Iraq now, but the troop surge is a step in the right direction if you ask me. If only they had used 'overwhelming force' in the first place, as the saying goes a stitch in time saves nine.....

  17. #17
    We all know the war and reconstruction was mismanaged badly. The question is what to do now? If we walk away from this the Democrats are going to have to deal with a blood bath on the order of Cambodia except it will be televised and blamed on the US. The blood the tyranny and the terror that may spring from it if we leave a power vacuum may be worse than any one can imagine and may fortify our enemies for decades?

    We have a new competent leader of the military on the ground and a much more enlightened head of defense who is clearly less partisan. Why not give them a unified opportunity to act without pulling the plug before they start? It wouldn't take long once the surge has been fully implemented to see what is going on. It seems to me that we have already wasted a lot of resources. To walk away now may seem prudent but since we are committing the resources to the surge why not put up a unified front for a short time and give it an opportunity to work and salvage something for ourselves and the Iraqi citizens who are caught in this ugly cross fire?

  18. #18
    [QUOTE=Winstonbiggs]We all know the war and reconstruction was mismanaged badly. The question is what to do now? If we walk away from this the Democrats are going to have to deal with a blood bath on the order of Cambodia except it will be televised and blamed on the US. The blood the tyranny and the terror that may spring from it if we leave a power vacuum may be worse than any one can imagine and may fortify our enemies for decades?

    We have a new competent leader of the military on the ground and a much more enlightened head of defense who is clearly less partisan. Why not give them a unified opportunity to act without pulling the plug before they start? It wouldn't take long once the surge has been fully implemented to see what is going on. It seems to me that we have already wasted a lot of resources. To walk away now may seem prudent but since we are committing the resources to the surge why not put up a unified front for a short time and give it an opportunity to work and salvage something for ourselves and the Iraqi citizens who are caught in this ugly cross fire?[/QUOTE]

    I think that putting up the funding is showing a unified approach. It is the hardline stance of GWB with 'no end date' that is causing the rub. the people want out of Iraq.

    He is not king.

  19. #19
    [QUOTE=Winstonbiggs]We all know the war and reconstruction was mismanaged badly. The question is what to do now? If we walk away from this the Democrats are going to have to deal with a blood bath on the order of Cambodia except it will be televised and blamed on the US. The blood the tyranny and the terror that may spring from it if we leave a power vacuum may be worse than any one can imagine and may fortify our enemies for decades?

    We have a new competent leader of the military on the ground and a much more enlightened head of defense who is clearly less partisan. Why not give them a unified opportunity to act without pulling the plug before they start? It wouldn't take long once the surge has been fully implemented to see what is going on. It seems to me that we have already wasted a lot of resources. To walk away now may seem prudent but since we are committing the resources to the surge why not put up a unified front for a short time and give it an opportunity to work and salvage something for ourselves and the Iraqi citizens who are caught in this ugly cross fire?[/QUOTE]

    The problem with Iraq is mostly a political one. No matter how many troops you put on the ground , no matter how much brutal force you use to suppress the insurgency, the problem wont go away. You see, the reason we have a civil war in Iraq today is because there is no political progress being made in settling the differences between Sunni and Shia Iraqis. The Sunnis have lost the power they recently had a monopoly on and are feeling threatened by the Shia, and rightfully so. Aside from Shia Death Squads carrying out revenge killings and sunnis being forced out of communiies, the shia feel they have not been included in any decisions made by this new government. In addition the ruling Shia majority have failed to form any reconciliation with the Sunnis and continue to not only exclude the sunnis from policy making but also to make policy that is hostile to the sunnis as well.

    No surge in our troops will solve that problem.

    So why commit the troops if you have no plans on the table to bring sunnis and shia together?

  20. #20
    [QUOTE=kennyo7]The problem with Iraq is mostly a political one. No matter how many troops you put on the ground , no matter how much brutal force you use to suppress the insurgency, the problem wont go away. You see, the reason we have a civil war in Iraq today is because there is no political progress being made in settling the differences between Sunni and Shia Iraqis. The Sunnis have lost the power they recently had a monopoly on and are feeling threatened by the Shia, and rightfully so. Aside from Shia Death Squads carrying out revenge killings and sunnis being forced out of communiies, the shia feel they have not been included in any decisions made by this new government. In addition the ruling Shia majority have failed to form any reconciliation with the Sunnis and continue to not only exclude the sunnis from policy making but also to make policy that is hostile to the sunnis as well.

    No surge in our troops will solve that problem.

    So why commit the troops if you have no plans on the table to bring sunnis and shia together?[/QUOTE]

    It's a double edge sword. Look what happened in Yugoslavia when Tito died. After we stepped in the breach things improved dramatically. In Iraq We created the breach but we didn't do what was necessary to close it once we took out the army.

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