Stalin died in 1953, right?
In the most ideologically driven occupation since Zhukov and Koniev raged across Silesia and Prussia in 1945, Rummy
and his boys have imposed their rule on Iraq. Not as efficiently as Beria and the NKVD, but just as steeped in ideology.
Newsweek has the gory details:
LAST FEBRUARY, retired Lt. Gen. Jay Garner was trying to put together a team of experts to rebuild Iraq after the war was over, and his list included 20 State Department officials. The day before he was supposed to leave for the region, Garner got a call from nse Donald Rumsfeld, who ordered him to cut 16 of the 20 State officials from his roster. It seems that the State Department people were -Arabist apologists, or squishy about the United Nations, or in some way politically incorrect to the right-wing ideologues at the White House or the neocons in the office of the Secretary of Defense. The vetting process "got so bad that even doctors sent to restore medical services had to be anti-abortion," recalled one of Garner's team
On May 16, five days after he arrived in Baghdad, Bremer assembled the top American officials in Baghdad and announced that all ministries would be "de-Baath-ized" by removing roughly the top six layers of bureaucracy. The CIA's Baghdad station chief said. "We'll,that's 30,000 to 50,000 pissed-off Baathists you're driving underground," said the senior spook. Bremer went on: the Army would be formally disbanded and not paid. "That's another 350,000 Iraqis you're sing off, and they've got guns," said CIA man. Said Bremer: "Those are my instructions."
In an interview with NEWSWEEK last week, Bremer maintained that "the de-Baathification decree is the single most popular thing I've done since I've been in Iraq." But it was widely recognized, even by Bremer, that not paying the soldiers was a mistake. Bremer quickly changed course and began cash handouts while trying to reconstitute the Iraqi Army and police. But the damage was done. Particularly in old Baathist strongholds around Baghdad and Tikrit, Saddam's hometown, guerrillas have been killing American soldiers in ambushes with rocket-propelled grenades and crude but effective homemade explosives.
In time, the Americans will probably crush or at least contain the last of the Baathist holdouts. Using cash incentives, American Special Forces have located and flushed out many of the Baathist hide-holes and safe houses. Religious terrorists are another matter. Intelligence officials believe that Islamic jihadists are gaining strength in Iraq, operating out of mosques and communicating in ways that cannot be traced by electronic eavesdropping devices.
On the ground, the Coalition Provisional Authority, charged with actually running Iraq until the Iraqis can take over, is the source of increasing ridicule. "CPA stands for the Condescending and Patronizing Americans," a Baghdad diplomat told a NEWSWEEK reporter. "So there they are, sitting in their palace: 800 people, 17 of whom speak Arabic, one is an expert on Iraq. Living in this cocoon. Writing papers. It's absurd," says one dissident Pentagon official. He exaggerates, but not by much. Most of the senior civilian staff are not technical experts but diplomats, Republican appointees, White House staffers and the like
Stunning right? Not exactly. Iraq was to be their lab for their new crusade. So everyone had to be part of the team and they wonder why no one will send soldiers to be used as cannon fodder. We dont do peacekeeping. Yeesh. What idiocy. No, you just die daily.
posted by Steve @ 8:34:00 PM