“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."

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Last Uniformed US Combat Troops Leave Iraq

Here is an early look at the mentality and emotions that got us into Iraq:

On May 23, 2003 when I heard it announced that Paul Bremer issued "Order Number 2" firing the entire former Iraqi army, I asked a friend, “What are 400,000 former Iraqi soldiers out of work, with guns and without paychecks going to do in a country with 40% unemployment?"

We soon found out. Here we are ten years later; deeply in debt, our own army bloodied and tens of thousands of decent Americans with lives wrecked by injuries, mostly caused by IEDs. These IEDs were artillery shells, abandoned when unpaid Iraqi soldiers left their bases. Many of these ex and unpaid Iraqi soldiers became the insurgents against a bone-headed foreign invader.

Today, L. Paul Bremer, with a nice fat safe government pension is oil painting New England landscapes. Here is the level of his artistic talent not quite to the same standards as his tour of duty as “Viceroy of Iraq."

Prior political announcements about the Iraqi threat to the US:

Hat Tip: The Green Hornet


  1. I added your Gore clip to the post. There are a lot of Republicans and Democrats who are anxious to eliminate the next threat, Iran.

  2. The Iranian threat is:

    Guess what ? WMDs.

  3. If anyone wants to really worry about WMDs in the hands of a hostile power, a country loaded with religious fanatics. they need go no further than Pakistan, a country still on our payroll.

  4. Ash tipped us onto the first New York Times Video Editorial reply to Bremmer's pack of lies in a previous editorial.

    I was blown away.

    Every time I made reference to it @ BC, I'd get complex BS replies to the Stark, Simple Truths in the Video.

    Folks get invested in their version of the truth to the exception of Glaring Realities.

    Trish claimed Gen Garner was covering his ass.

    Truth is, he accomplished our only successful endeavor years before with the Kurds.

    ...was working on a repeat performance, spending evenings on a lawn lounge smoking a cigar, as we speculated about spending vacations there.

    Bremmer and company saw to it that that will never be.


    Alu Fucking Akbar

  5. Yea, Pakistan bad, Iran good.
    Got it.

  6. There was cause to take Saddam down.

    George HW Bush and the US military grossly mismanaged the Iraq challenge in the post Kuwait War period.

    Urging the Shia of Iraq to revolt and abandoning them when they did.

    The drive to Baghdad, in 2003, a superb military operation.
    The post invasion management of the country, a total debacle.

    The US won the battle, then lost the war. With half of our people now in the "Low Income" category as a result.

    Our treasure, much more so than blood, grossly mismanaged and wasted.

    Pour into the sandbox and lost.

  7. Just a couple of weeks ago I was going to order Ferguson's Film,

    "No End in Sight"

    Things got hectic here, and that got put on hold.

    Sometimes I wonder if I should ever watch it.

    A depressing story, to be sure.

  8. Pakistan, anon, is a direct threat, an Islamofascist regime with nuclear weapons, and the US manufactured and paid for F15s to deliver them.

    The Iranians have neither nuclear weapons nor the capacity to deliver them, if they did.

    It is not a question of "good and bad". It is a matter of military and political realities.

  9. The Saudis, during the Reagan years providing the funding to the Pakistani to develop that nuclear capability.

    The Saudi funding the Taliban, in Pakistan and Afghanistan, prior to 2001. The Saudi continuing to fund radical Islamic madrassas across the whirled, to this day.

    The Saudis funding aQ through the "Golden Chain".

    If one truly fears for the Israeli, the real military threat are those Saudi owned nuclear weapons, stockpiled in Pakistan.

    Not the empty rhetoric emanating from Tehran.

  10. I think the Pakis have '16's.

    Plenty good enuff.

  11. Iran is not a threat - Deuce, Desert Rat - 12/18/2011
    Got it.

  12. I don't think the Pakis have either one.

  13. Not a military threat, to US.

    That is totally correct, anon.

    The UAE, on its own, can take down the Iranian air force, if General P is to be believed.

    The Iraqi Army, under Saddam, more than a match for the Iranian Army.

    That same Iraqi Army did not last a month of combat operations, against US, in Iraq.

    The Iranians CANNOT project a military threat beyond its own borders.

    The Straits of Hormuz, though, create that border.

  14. My mistake; should have googled First.

    The most capable fighter in PAF service from 1983 to 2007 has been the F-16 Fighting Falcon. 40 of the F-16A/B Block 15 models were delivered from 1983 to 1987. Deliveries of another 28 F-16A/B were stopped after the 1990 arms embargo imposed on Pakistan under the Pressler amendment but 14 of these were later delivered during 2005-2008. The F-16A/B fleet is to be upgraded with MLU (Mid-Life Update) modification kits and Falcon Star Structural Service Life Enhancement kits by Turkish Aerospace Industries starting in September 2010 at a rate of 1 per month. Four F-16A/B are already undergoing upgrade in the U.S. for delivery in 2011. The MLU package will include new APG-69v9 radars, Joint Helmet Mounted Cueing Systems and Link-16 data-links, along with other new communications, targeting and electronic warfare systems.[128][129]

  15. no luck again

    anyhoo: just put

    "pakistan's f-16's"

    in googie

  16. They sold their nuke secrets, but they'll be good caretakers of whatever we sell them.

  17. The Pakistani have 63 F-16s, not 15s, I stand corrected.

    The Pakistani Air Force's fleet

  18. Mussharref was trying to get F-16's out of Bush, to no avail, causing dumbo to come to the erroneous conclusion that they didn't already have F-16's.

    I'm an ass.

  19. If there are any data sets that would cause us to think that the Iranians are a military threat, I'd love to see those.

    Data sets, not feelings or fears.

  20. The fact is Iran is Two point Three times the size of Texas with about Twice the Population of California. And, they, on net, export a couple of million barrels of oil every day.

    They want nukes. They will have nukes.

  21. Washington post says administration's Iran policy turns to containment.

    Contain what, there's no threat?

    Iran is not a threat. Got it.

  22. The genii in Brussels decided it would be a doozy of an idea to boycott Iran's oil.

    Athens, and Rome called up and screamed, "Are you out of your ever-loving, fucking minds?"

    That idea is dying a rather rapid death.

  23. Contain the cultural and political threat, anon.

    Not a military threat.

    Those things cannot be conflated.

    Please, provide a data set that details the Iranian military capability that threatens US.

  24. They might be a threat; but the world's full of threats. You can't go to war with all of them. Not the way "we" do war.

  25. What would they do with such weapons Rufus?

    You were just informed on this thread that the Iranians cannot project a threat beyond their border.


  26. There are those that believe that Mexico poses a cultural and political threat to the US.
    So much so they advocate militarizing, at least fortifying. our southern frontier.

    There is no military threat, emanating towards US, from Mexico.

    Though there are any number of cultural threats that cross our southern frontier.

    Those threats give Mr Perry cause to call for US military intervention in Mexico, beyond what we have already committed to.

    That much as little sense as calls for US military action against Iran.

  27. I have no idea what they'll do with them, anon. I just know they're going to have them.

  28. anon, you have yet to give reason for anyone to change their minds, with regards the Iranian capabilities.

    Provide us with some data sets, please.

  29. Perry's a brainiac, alright. Doesn't want to build a fence, but thinks it's just dandy to invade Mexico.

  30. Let's get beyond emotional feelings and deal with facts, please.

  31. Explain why containment, sanctions and sabotage will not be sufficient.

    It's a policy that certainly worked well against the Soviets.

  32. Are there others on this site who support the view that Iran has no military capabilities beyond it's borders?

  33. Come on, anpn, answer the question.

    Provide the data sets that detail the Iranian capabilities that create the threat you claim exists.

  34. "That same Iraqi Army did not last a month of combat operations, against US, in Iraq."


    A large part of the Iraqi Army, responding to our brilliant strategy and prewar propaganda advising them to fade away, did so.

    On promises that they would be paid by us to continue to serve.

    They were, until they weren't, when Bush's cronies convinced him to send Bremmer over to totally fuck up the works.

    He did so, masterfully, and with style.

    (Don't forget them classy boots)

  35. How many Iranian operatives do you think are in the Continental USA, at this time,

  36. That was not the case, in Kuwait, doug.

    The US still cleaned their clock, in a matter of days.

    The Iranians using human wave attacks against those same Iraqi military units a few years earlier, with little, let us say no, success.

  37. "Are there others on this site who support the view that Iran has no military capabilities beyond it's borders?"


    Yeah, me:

    The Hezbo's don't exist.

    Nor do the Norkors.

  38. "That was not the case, in Kuwait, doug.

    The US still cleaned their clock, in a matter of days.


    As we did on our drive to Baghdad.

    Our Military at it's finest, aided by well planned propaganda.

    Followed by disasterous political intrusion.

  39. Iran has no ability to project military force beyond it's borders.

    Desert rat, 12/18/2011

    Got it.

  40. Doug -

    You know that Hezbollah has no ability to project military force beyond the Lebanese border.

  41. I do not know, doug.

    I do know that there are cigarette smugglers that are said to be Hezbollah agents. Using the proceeds from that interstate smuggling to supplement their organization's meager funding opportunities in Lebanon.

    How much direct control the Iranians have over their operations, outside my sphere of knowledge.

    I would think, though, that just as the Federals were tracking the 11SEP01 terrorists prior to the raids on DC and NYCity, those HB agents and cells are known to our internal security forces.

  42. This comment has been removed by the author.

  43. Are you going to attempt to conflate the Lebanese with Iranians, anon?

    Is Lebanon really a Iranian province, in your opinion?

    Just as Mexico is part of the United States? As the US supplies the Mexican military with weapons and training.

    Just as the US does with the Lebanese Army.

    Feltman also renewed the United States’ commitment to a stable, sovereign and independent Lebanon. “Ambassador Feltman underscored the U.S. Administration’s support to strengthening Lebanon and Lebanon’s institutions, including the Lebanese Armed Forces, recognizing its importance in serving as Lebanon’s sole legitimate defense force, securing Lebanon’s borders and defending the sovereignty and independence of the state,” the embassy statement added.

    Read more:
    (The Daily Star :: Lebanon News ::

  44. "I would think, though, that just as the Federals were tracking the 11SEP01 terrorists prior to the raids on DC and NYCity, those HB agents and cells are known to our internal security forces. "


    Which could be buried under the present Admin. just as all the stuff we knew was prior to 9-11. (thanks, Clinton, thanks, Condi)

    Newt wouldn't, Mitt probably won't.

  45. Would you call Los Zetas, in Mexico, agents of the US government. Their leaders were trained in the US, at the School of the Americas, at Fort Benning, GA.

    Or just an unintended consequence of US support for the Mexican government?

  46. ...or will Mitt have "advisors" like Bush 43?

  47. ...architects of our

    "Victory in Iraq"

  48. If you wish to discuss when criminal activity becomes a military threat, well that's certainly viable area of concern, especially here in the southwest United States.

    Are the Mexican drug cartels and gangs like the Salvadorian based MS-13 military threats to the US?

    Or just criminal enterprises?

  49. Iran is not a threat to the US as are the Middle Eastern puppeteers and their cronies in the US who want the US engaged in settling affairs (fighting their battles) that should be settled by the belligerents in the Middle East.

  50. Unremarked upon by both the Left, and Right Wing Media (each, for their own different reasons) is the fact that Obammy has quietly, and methodically advanced, and improved upon Bush's Missile Defense System.

  51. Criminal activity can be a threat to civil order, but it is not a military threat.

    And it is a threat that is not going to be solved by deploying the US military to Mexico.

    The threat that Iran poses to the US and our NATO allies in Europe, it's not a military one.
    It's more economic and political.

    The Iranians in control of the premier choke point on the life blood of the "West's" oil based society. A choke point that does not require them to project force beyond their own frontier.

  52. The Iranians know TWO things.

    1) There's a good chance that any missile fired at Israel, or anyone else will not make it to its target, and

    2) All Mullahs will die in either case.

    When I see the Mullahs of Qom start strapping on suicide vests, and blowing up pizza parlors I'll admit that there may be a problem.

    However, it hasn't happened yet, and I hear the "smart" money is betting it won't happen next year, either.

  53. That's where the Iranians could screw up. Those Straits of Hormuz have to look might tempting from time to time. And, with modern weaponry being what it is, it might require the Marines to go "amphib" to try and take out any Iranian silkwork installations.

    That could get hairy in a hurry.

  54. On the other hand, that might be completely unnecessary. In fact, it probably would be. It's hard for a civilian to know these things.

  55. Not a single data set can be supplied in support of anon's position?

    So typical of the fear mongers.

  56. While those that call for attacking Iran militarily are quite sure that the Iranians will be unable to respond, militarily.

    They discount the Iranians ability to respond by any means, at all.
    Even on their own frontier.

    Not wishing to discuss the possible consequences of starting an overt war with Iran, because ...

  57. Daniel Ruettiger, who earned a walk-on spot on Notre Dame's college football team for his plucky play despite his small frame, dished out $382,866 to settle SEC charges for a pump-and-dump stock scheme that reportedly rolled up $11 million in profits for Rudy Nutrition, a now out of business soft-drink company.

    More white collar criminals that are not going to jail, while poor folk with less than an once of marijuana are going to jail.

    50,000 Marijuana Arrests In New York City A Year, Most Are Black And Hispanic Men

    Wonder who is setting those priorities?