Thursday, December 18, 2003

War News for December 18, 2003 Bring 'em on: US soldier killed, one soldier and Iraqi civilian wounded in Baghdad ambush. Bring 'em on: Shi'ite leader assassinated in Baghdad. Bring 'em on: Shi'ite mob kills former Baathist near Najaf. Bring 'em on: Two US soldiers wounded in RPG attack in central Mosul. Bring 'em on: One US soldier wounded in mortar attack in Mosul. Bring 'em on: US convoy ambushed near Kirkuk. Bring 'em on: US troops under fire in Tikrit. "...shootings that Staff Sergeant John Minzer described as 'a dime a dozen.'" CPA tightens gasoline rationing. White House scrubs website to revise history. "After the insurrection in Iraq proved more stubborn than expected, the White House edited the original headline on its Web site of President Bush's May 1 speech, "President Bush Announces Combat Operations in Iraq Have Ended," to insert the word 'Major' before combat." Bremer's CPA botched the information war. "Rather than complaining about an anti-US and pro-Hussein bias in reporting from established Arab broadcasters like Al Jazeera, analysts say, the US should have been more aggressive in building its own network. 'This should have been done sooner and better,' said Gary Sick, senior research scholar at Columbia University. 'It's a good idea, as most people in the Middle East don't have a sophisticated understanding of what democracy is all about. But it sounds odd coming eight months into the occupation.'" Actually, it has been clear since the beginning of Bush's War that the information warfare component of the campaign has been focused exclusively on hoodwinking the American electorate than on influencing Iraqi public opinion. Reconstruction in shambles; Bremer wants another 1,000 "administrators." "The recent request by L. Paul Bremer, which is being fiercely debated by the president's aides, underscores growing alarm in some sectors of the government that Bush's exit strategy for Iraq is in trouble." Baker's debt deal may not work for the Bushies. "Iraq will need an internationally recognised leadership to sign a debt relief deal with the Paris Club group of creditor states, Paris Club President Jean-Pierre Jouyet said on Thursday." Putin says Bush's War was "unjustified." Analysis: Lieutenant AWOL again revises the rationale or war. David Kay may leave ISG empty handed. Commentary Opinion: The war goes on for a battered Army. "So, yes, Saddam's in the cage he so richly deserves. We'll be getting to know him rather well at his trial. But he's no longer the enemy. And this venture has weakened us far more, and for far longer, than we care to admit." Opinion: If the US "loses" in Iraq, it'll be thanks to Rummy and Bremer. "If it goes south it will be due to the extraordinary interagency bickering, bureaucratic constipation, self-imposed isolation and misguided personnel policies of the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA) that runs civil administration and nation-building in a place where everything is broken...Eight months were lost while the original mistakes were compounded. One of Bremer's first actions was to dissolve the Iraqi army, offering no hope to a bunch of newly unemployed soldiers, armed, trained and angry. An Iraqi Governing Council was installed without sufficient representation of the Sunni Arab minority, a quarter of Iraq's 24 million people. The false impression that the Sunni members of Saddam's Baath Party would be purged from public life down to the last member took hold because the CPA's strategic communications plan to communicate with the Iraqi people was broken. It remains broken. Meantime, the CPA took on administrators and officials who serve only 90 days in Iraq before rotating home, severely limiting their ability to make three-month tours while American soldiers do a year." Opinion: Even conservative traitor Robert Novak, the right-wing press flunky who aided and abetted the White House conspiracy to reveal the identity of an American CIA agent, says Bremer's CPA is a mess. "The Bush administration has spent a lot of time saying how well things have gone in Iraq, contending the happy truth has been obscured by negative news media coverage. This is privately described by officials as the 'smoke and mirrors' technique." By the way, has Lieutenant AWOL made any progress on identifying the traitor in the White House who commited a grave breach of national security? Opinion: Christmas came early for Lieutenant AWOL. Enjoy it while you can, Lieutenant AWOL, because you're still a miserable failure.


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