White House, Joint Chiefs At Odds on Adding Troops
By Robin Wright and Peter Baker
Washington Post Staff Writers
Tuesday, December 19, 2006; Page A01
The Bush administration is split over the idea of a surge in troops to Iraq, with White House officials aggressively promoting the concept over the unanimous disagreement of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, according to U.S. officials familiar with the intense debate.
Sending 15,000 to 30,000 more troops for a mission of possibly six to eight months is one of the central proposals on the table of the White House policy review to reverse the steady deterioration in Iraq. The option is being discussed as an element in a range of bigger packages, the officials said.
But the Joint Chiefs think the White House, after a month of talks, still does not have a defined mission and is latching on to the surge idea in part because of limited alternatives, despite warnings about the potential disadvantages for the military, said the officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the White House review is not public.
The chiefs have taken a firm stand, the sources say, because they believe the strategy review will be the most important decision on Iraq to be made since the March 2003 invasion.
At regular interagency meetings and in briefing President Bush last week, the Pentagon has warned that any short-term mission may only set up the United States for bigger problems when it ends. The service chiefs have warned that a short-term mission could give an enormous edge to virtually all the armed factions in Iraq -- including al-Qaeda's foreign fighters, Sunni insurgents and Shiite militias -- without giving an enduring boost to the U.S military mission or to the Iraqi army, the officials said...
Dear Leader don' need no steenkin' plan, he's gonna surge and the surgent surginess of his big bad surgin' will be enough to surge them Democrats right back outa Washington. You'll see!
And at all the NeoCon policy wonk mazagines an' web sites, they're followin' up the reasonable reasonin' behind Dear Leader's reasons. You see, it's the same policy that enabled us to win in Viet Nam!
You see, the plan will work like what really happened in the '70s:
The Keane-Kagan plan is not revolutionary. Rather, it is an application of a counterinsurgency approach that has proved to be effective elsewhere, notably in Vietnam. There, Gen. Creighton Abrams cleared out the Viet Cong so successfully that the South Vietnamese government took control of the country. Only when Congress cut off funds to South Vietnam in 1974 were the North Vietnamese able to win.
The Government had control! Just like Saddam's did in Bagdad when we arrived. Just like we do now.
Those of you like me, old enough to remember, who you gonna believe, Henry Kissinger, or your own lyin' memory?
You see, you just thought we pulled out of VietNam because it was impossible to tell the good guys from the bad guys any more. You just thought it was because every last person there hated us and was either out to get us or bleed us or sell us China White or Cambodian Black Tar or settle a score. You only thought it was the biggest clusterfuck in American history.
You see, we have a potentially bigger one right here, that's already made far more money for all the right people. You really think they're going to let it go because 9 out of 10 people, soldiers included, want us out of there?
These guys really do think we're cattle, and they doubtless have a plan to stop our bleating and get the herd moving to the abattoir.