“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Finally, the Plan

Tonight, the President unveiled his long awaited plan to bring security to Iraq.

20,ooo more troops are bound for Iraq. 8 brigades are to reinforce the Iraqi military in Baghdad and 4,000 troops will be sent to fight al-Qaeda in Anbar.

18 Iraqi Brigades with US backup will be deployed in mixed Shia/Sunni neighborhoods with a ratio of 1 soldier to every 50 inhabitants. The focus will be on the Sunni insurgents but there will be "expanded rules of engagement" and we have al-Maliki's concurrence that political or sectarian lines will not protect any "evil doers."

The Democrats will maintain a "stay the course" plan which they have employed since the war began. Oppose whatever the President proposes.


  1. Iraq the Model has an update on Haifa Street and says that the Persh Merga will not be used in Baghdad.

  2. Whit said, "The focus will be on the Sunni insurgents but there will be 'expanded rules of engagement' and we have al-Maliki's concurrence that political or sectarian lines will not protect any 'evil doers.'"

    At least on the battlefield. But after the battle, when the US forces hand the suspects over to Maliki, if they are Shi'ite they'll go free the same day, but the Sunni ones will show up again the next day on the street as a corpse with lots of neat 3/16" holes drilled into it. And if the Americans ever get too close to where Mucktada is hiding, the President will get a call from Maliki telling him to back the hell off.

  3. He had better have that no-good son of a bitch, Maliki, wrapped up; that's all I can say. God, why do I doubt that?

  4. re: Somalia

    My Pretty Pony Party Platter

  5. Thank you for the information Whit; I am educated everyday by this site and those who contribute to it.

    A saying comes to mind; me against my brother, me and my brother against my cousin; me, my brother and my cousin against...

    One fact is clear Shia and Sunni factions absolutely, completely hate the Pesh Merga.

    With regards to the Iraq the Model article; "the media considers all Kurdish troops as Peshmerga while in fact there are three brigades; that are part of the IA and they receive orders from the Iraqi defense ministry." Sheikh Mustafa denied there would be any role for the Peshmerga in Baghdad's operations.

    To believe this statement I have to believe that the loyalty of these Kurdish fighters lies with the predominantly Shia Iraqi army as opposed to their brethern...the Pesh Merga. Substitute Sunni for Kurd/Pesh Merga and is the statement believable?

    The death squads/militia in Sadr City will be dealt with; either by U.S. and Kurdish forces, or by Sunni AQ-sponsored by Saudi Arabia.

    Similarly, there is no escaping Iran is on the horizon. There are no good options; only bad and worse. Just my opinion.

  6. Let's face it guys, if the Iraqis want it they can have it. We should know within a short period of time. A month, or less.

    I just hope Dubya knows how to say "Fuck you, and good night," if he has to.

  7. An actual UK government poster outside a London metro station. Shades of 1984.

  8. "Victory will not look like the ones our fathers and grandfathers achieved. There will be no surrender ceremony on the deck of a battleship."

    Nope, there won't. But a nice transfer-of-authority ceremony, no battleship needed, how about that? Hand off that tar baby, baby, and let's all come home. The shit will fly, yes it will. But it will fly without us. And as Martha Stewart would say, "That's a good thing."

    The military - our military - is having to pursue a ghost. The ghost of a unified, stable, and secure Iraq. They are exhausting themselves chasing a phantom. And don't that suck. For everyone.

  9. Teresita,

    Shades of a valuable capability. One we couldn't hope to field - least not the ones featured in libertarian nightmares.

    Given what Fred Ikle says of the harm that will directly accompany technological developments, how else are you to keep track of all the new tools out there? IT provides one way. Genocide the other. Which do you prefer?

  10. All the better to confirm racial profiling info.
    ...and the ever more frequent explosiions.
    Police state indeed!
    Then we can sit back and watch video footage of the cleansing.

  11. At some point, the usefulness of racial profiling may decline, as bombers adapt to the selection. Then you're only hope may be finding the explosives themselves.

    You'd better hope there's innumberable floating eyes, ears and noses at that point.

  12. Teresita-11:37:37--Man does that ring a bell with me. I remember when 1984 seemed a long time in the future, and now it seems a long time in the past. We here in our small town had a test program to put cameras on light poles, to catch speeders or whatever, by a couple of the busy intersections. I could not stand it. Happily, others could not stand it as well, and the cameras are gone--but I got to tell ya, I hate this spooky shit.

  13. Bobalharb, there are camera set-ups starting to pop up in Auburn and Seattle designed to catch red-light runners and send them a ticket by mail. They are starting to multiply like weeds because they generate free money for the towns, and I'm all in favor of them because I drive like a grandmother.

  14. Don't you just feel like, you know, you got no privacy left at all? That's the feeling I get. I don't like it. In London, the say, you're always 'on camera'.----I remember a story about a man that got caught in London for something, because a guy in Texas--Texas!--called--from Texas!!--the London bobbies, and they nailed him. Guy in Texas was watching some London street via a webcam. I'm all for law enforcement, but this is just too spooky.