Thursday, October 18, 2007

War views

Anthony Cordesman, in a new report published by the Center for Strategic & International Studies, called Iraq, Afghanistan, and Self-Inflicted Wounds: Strategic Lessons of Armed Nation Building:
The US not only was unprepared for the aftermath of its initial military intervention, it lacked the tools and skill sets to understand the sheer scale of the effort required, how long a successful intervention would take, and the level of resources that would be required. The Bush Administration mixed an ideological fantasy about the ease with which democratic states could be created with denial of the problems and complexities that emerged once it intervened.

Christopher Dickey, writing in Newsweek (War and Deliverance) about his father James' novel, Deliverance, and the lessons it has today:
I think Lewis is Vice President Dick Cheney's closet fantasy of himself, and as such, a sort of model for the Bush administration as a whole. And Ed, he's about the rest of us, just scared and trying to get by. And the river? That's the war in Iraq.
"What the hell you want to go f--- around with that river for?" one of the unfriendly locals asks Lewis early in the movie.
"Because it's there," says Lewis.
"It's there alright. You get in and you can't get out, you gonna wish it wasn't."

One of the most disconcerting aspects of the endless war the United States is fighting now is that it started because Iraq was there: it appeared to be a made-to-order target for an easy invasion that would have great symbolic (indeed, philosophic) significance for the thinkers around Bush.



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