9/13/2005

Daily Kos: FOX News: Bush Supporters Souring on Iraq War

FOX News: Bush Supporters Souring on Iraq War
by Numerian [Subscribe]
Sun Sep 11th, 2005 at 21:58:47 CDT

Update [2005-9-11 22:57:54 by Armando]: From the diaries by Armando. This is an important development for our Iraq policy. As I have said, even if Democrats spoke strongly on Iraq, which, for the most part, they do not, it will not be Dems who get us out before 2006. It will be Bush supporters. Hunt has been a cheerleader for the past two years. If he can't stomach this anymore, many will follow. And we need a change -- for the country's sake. This may not be a good political development for Dems - but it is a good development for the country.

Ret. Colonel David Hunt. Does this name mean anything to you? If you channel surfed during the March 2003 invasion of Baghdad you might remember him as a regular military expert on FOX News. What does Col. Hunt think of the war now? ""This has been a terribly conducted war. It's been 28 months of this - it's time to get upset."

FOX News is reporting that quite a few other stalwart supporters of the war in Iraq are losing patience. See "Bush Supporters Question Iraq War Tactics" on the Fox News Website.

Pay attention to the emphasis on "Tactics". Supporters aren't running away from the strategy of the war, but they are questioning the competence with which it is being managed.

Who is to blame?

* Numerian's diary :: ::
*

According to Bill Kristol, editor of the Weekly Standard and one of the intellectual architects of the invasion of Iraq, the fault lies with Donald Rumsfeld.

"In the Aug. 15 edition of the magazine, Kristol accuses Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld of 'weakness and defeatism,' for lowering the standards for success in Iraq and 'emboldening' the enemy through his commanders' suggestion that U.S troops may come home as early as next spring if Iraqi forces are trained to secure the country in that time.

"The president knows we have to win this war. If some of his subordinates are trying to find ways to escape from it, he needs to assert control over them, overrule them or replace them," Kristol wrote. "What the president needs to do now is tell the Pentagon to stop talking about (and planning for) withdrawal, and make sure they are planning for victory."

It's not just neo-conservatives like Kristol looking for scapegoats. Republican politicians are now questioning how long the U.S. is going to be embroiled in its Iraqi adventure. According to FOX News, "in July, Rep. Wayne Gilchrest, R-Md., a Vietnam War veteran who has supported the war in Iraq, became the fourth Republican to sign on to a bipartisan resolution urging the president to lay out a clear exit strategy, and has said publicly he's concerned about the effect of public opinion on congressional Republicans in 2006."

Let's see. Some Republicans like Rep. Wayne Gilchrest want to focus on strategy; specifically, an exit strategy implemented in time to save Republican hides during the 2006 elections.

Some Republicans like Bill Kristol want to focus on tactics: it's all the fault of the Pentagon for mismanaging this war.

Meanwhile, back in Iraq, and not highlighted much in FOX News, is the real weakness of the U.S. position in Iraq: logistics. The British mercenaries managing the Baghdad airport have shut down the airport because the Iraqi government did not have the money to pay them the munificent daily wages shelled out by the Coalition Provisional Authority. Notice in this situation the U.S. military did not immediately step up and say "we'll take over managing and protecting the airport". Instead, the military intervened to get the British mercenaries to accept half of what is owed them now in exchange for opening up the airport again.

This is the logistical nightmare facing the U.S.: not enough troops to secure and manage the airport on their own, and maybe even not enough money to keep paying the hired help $1,000/day for their services. If the Iraqi government takes over full control of the airport, how long will it be before it is overrun by insurgents? And when this happens, how long will the U.S. be able to secure the Green Zone without any way to provide supplies other than through airlift?

Col. Hunt, Bill Kristol, and all the other supporters of the war who are now critics should be focusing their attention on the real issue: how to prevent a retreat and ultimate defeat of the U.S. military due to logistical failures.

Daily Kos: FOX News: Bush Supporters Souring on Iraq War

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