Category Archives: War

GOP Should Grow A Brain, Join The Peace Train

Foreign Policy, Iraq, Left-Liberalism, Military, Neoconservatism, Old Right, Republicans, War

“GOP Should Grow A Brain, Join The Peace Train” is the current column, now on WND. An excerpt:

… Texas Gov. Rick Perry was not the only Republican warbot to pile on Sen. Rand Paul. “In the past three days alone, recapitulated Politico, Perry used a Washington Post op-ed to warn about the dangers of ‘isolationism’ and describe Paul as ‘curiously blind’ to growing threats in Iraq. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) accused the Kentucky senator on CNN of wanting a ‘withdrawal to fortress America.’ And former Vice President Dick Cheney declared … that ‘isolationism is crazy,’ while his daughter, Liz Cheney, said Paul ‘leaves something to be desired, in terms of national security policy.’

Like McMussolini, the vampiric father and daughter duo are a spent force, easily dismissed by a young turk. But can Rand stand up to the Joint Chiefs? Military movers and shakers are heavily vested in the sunk-cost fallacy—the irrational notion that more resources must be committed forthwith in Iraq (and elsewhere), so as to “redeem” the original misguided commitment of men, money and materiel to the mission. To that end, repeated ad nauseam is the refrain about our “brave men and women of the military,” whose sacrifice for Iraqi “freedoms” will be squandered unless more such sacrifices are made. The Skeptic’s Dictionary dispels this illogic: “To continue to invest in a hopeless project is irrational. Such behavior may be a pathetic attempt to delay having to face the consequences of one’s poor judgment. The irrationality is a way to save face, to appear to be knowledgeable, when in fact one is acting like an idiot.” Besides, it’s time the military heed its paymasters, The American People, a majority of whom “don’t want to send U.S. soldiers back into Iraq.”

Read the complete column. “GOP Should Grow A Brain, Join The Peace Train” is now on WND.

Our German readers can now follow this column and other worthy writers in the JUNGE FREIHEIT, a weekly newspaper of excellence.

Editors wishing to feature the “Return to Reason” column in their publications, pixel or paper, please contact Bookings@ilanamercer.com. Or, ilana@ilanamercer.com


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Bill Clinton Correct About Cheney

Foreign Policy, Hillary Clinton, Iraq, Neoconservatism, War

Just as I was beginning to harbor some hope that Mark Levin would ditch neoconservatism, the broadcaster galvanized rhetorical firepower to defend Dick Cheney, this week, from Bill Clinton’s coruscating attack. Levin went so far as to scold Genghis Bush for not helping Cheney out. After all, said Levin, Cheney was a sickly man battling the administration all alone over Iraq.

Hopeless.

Admittedly, Bill Clinton has given voice to the truth late in the day, but everything he said about Cheney is correct.

Meet the Press’s David Gregory had asked “Bill Clinton about the current crisis in Iraq and whether Dick Cheney is a ‘credible critic’ in going after the Obama administration for ISIS taking over major cities there. Clinton chuckled and said, ‘I believe if they hadn’t gone to war in Iraq, none of this would be happening.’”

A no-brainer.

How, however, will Bill cover for wife Hill, who has “refused to atone for her role in the prosecution of an unjust war.” As detailed in “Confess, Clinton; Say You’re Sorry, Sullivan”:

During the Democratic presidential candidates’ debate in New Hampshire, Clinton was asked whether she regretted “voting to authorize the president’s use of force against Saddam Hussein in Iraq without actually reading the national intelligence estimate, the classified document laying out the best U.S. intelligence at that time.” Her reply: “I feel like I was totally briefed. [Expect the “I-feel-like” locution to proliferate if a woman is ensconced in the White House.] I knew all the arguments. I knew all of what the Defense Department, the CIA, the State Department were all saying. And I sought dissenting opinions, as well as talking to people in previous administrations and outside experts.”

Back to the humdrum truth Bill uttered to Gregory about Cheney:

Gregory brought up Syria, which Clinton didn’t deny is a problem all on its own, but “what happened in Syria wouldn’t have happened in Iraq” if the Bush administration hadn’t taken the country to war and Iraq wouldn’t have been so “drastically altered.”
Clinton also found it “unseemly” that a former vice president is “attacking the administration for not doing an adequate job for not cleaning up the mess that he made,”


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UPDATED: Don’t Know Shiite From Shinola (From Figurative Crucifixion to Cookies)

Bush, Foreign Policy, Iraq, Islam, Terrorism, War

“Don’t know Shiite From Shinola” is the current column, now on WND. An excerpt:

Almost unanimous on the right is the mystifying notion that a reduced American footprint in the world, President Barack Obama’s doing, has brought about the “sudden” eruption across Iraq of a particularly savage faction of Sunni fundamentalists called the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). This small band of zealots has conquered a third of Iraq, including the metropolis of Mosul, from which 500,000 residents have fled. Tikrit too is under ISIS control. Fallujah fell in January.

Odd too is the idea that ISIS, currently barreling toward the capital, Baghdad, is somehow a new killer on the block. While the gang, led by newcomer Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, is not as ancient as the Egyptian goddess by the same name—ISIS was previously known as Al Qaida in Iraq (A.Q.I.), reflecting its earlier, more modest mission. A.Q.I. was the brainchild of Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, described aptly in the New Yorker as, “A Jordanian who had been a convicted thief and sex criminal before turning to radical Islam.” Commensurate with its morphing, expansive ambitions, A.Q.I. changed its name to ISIS. Whereas “Al Qaida was originally envisioned as a kind of Sunni foreign legion, which would defend Muslim lands from Western occupation,” writes New Yorker staffer Lawrence Wright, “Zarqawi had a different goal in mind. He hoped to provoke an Islamic civil war.” George W. Bush’s invasion primed Iraq for Zarqawi’s purposes. “There was no better venue than the fractured state of Iraq, which sits astride the Sunni-Shiite fault line.”

So savage and extreme is ISIS, always has been, that it had been “booted out of the Al Qaida consortium,” attests Wright. Remember the “Dear Al (Zarqawi)” letter penned by Ayman al-Zawahiri to Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, in 2005? In it, Bin Laden’s Capo Bastone (Zawahiri) had asked the lieutenant (Zarqawi) to reconsider the wisdom of slaughtering so many Shia civilians in Iraq. Al-Z no. 1 broached the topic by counseling Al-Z no. 2 about the wisdom of bringing “the Muslim masses to the mujahed movement.” To that end, killing so many of them was probably unhelpful. Yes, the Shia are a handful—theologically problematic—conceded Zawahiri. Suspect too was the Shia’s history of “connivance with the Crusaders.” But while Zawahiri didn’t give a dried camel’s hump about his Shia brethren, he thought better of slaughtering them, preferring to forgive their “ignorance.” Besides, added Zawahiri as an afterthought, it’s impossible for the mujahedeen to kill all Iraq’s Shia.

While Zarqawi rejected Zawahiri’s soft approach, his personal odyssey has a happy ending. Zarqawi died, killed by Americans in 2006. But his legacy, like that of Bush’s invasion of Iraq, lives on in ISIS. Shia Iran, once a bitter enemy of Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, now has pride-of-place in the Iraq that Bush built. The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps has been galvanized to the aid of the Iraqi army. But it is not the 930,000 members of the Iraqi security forces that the Revolutionary Guard aims to rouse. Despite the princely sums ($25 billion) Americans spent to train and prepare it, in Mosul, this inorganic, artificial creation of the Bush brigades fled before 1,300 ISIS fighters. To fight the marauding Sunnis, the Revolutionary Guard will likely corral well-motivated, tribal Shia militias. (In Iraq, Shiites make up about sixty percent of the population. Sunnis comprise less than twenty percent.)

It is this cauldron of sectarian strife that Saddam Hussein kept from bubbling over. …

… Read the complete column. “Don’t know Shiite From Shinola” is now on WND.

Our German readers can now follow this column and other worthy writers in the JUNGE FREIHEIT, a weekly newspaper of excellence.

Editors wishing to feature the “Return to Reason” column in their publications, pixel or paper, please contact Bookings@ilanamercer.com.

UPDATE (6/20): From (Figurative) Crucifixion to Cookies. One-Upon-A-Time They Crucified Me for what I would write about Iraq. Now I get a cookie. I’ll take the cookie. This reader calls his comments, “Thoughts while shaving.” His are regular quips at “Comments.” Funny. He writes:

ramblindon • 5 hours ago “Thoughts while shaving: While some contributors to WND are tedious at best, Ilana Mercer is not to be counted among them. With first cup of coffee in hand it just about jumped out of hand when reading the ‘Don’t know Shiite from Shinola.’ You get a ‘cookie’ Ilana Mercer! Period! End Report!”


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Megyn Kelly’s Come-Back

Iraq, Neoconservatism, Propaganda, Republicans, Terrorism, War

If I have underestimated Megyn Kelly of “The Kelly File,” it is not for lack of trying not to. I moved from enthusiasm to disappointment in short succession, as it became clear Kelly’s hour on Fox News had degenerated into a smarter, prettier version of Bill O’Reilly’s “The Factor”: Rah-rah for every single form of false jingoism imaginable.

However, Kelly often surprises. She certainly rattled the vampiric Dick Cheney:

MEGYN KELLY to Dick Cheney: “In your op-ed, you write as follows: ‘Rarely has a U.S. president been so wrong about so much at the expense of so many.’ But time and time again, history has proven that you got it wrong as well, sir. You said there were no doubts that Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. You said we would be greeted as liberators. You said the Iraq insurgency was in its last throes back in 2005. And you said after our intervention, extremists would have to “rethink their strategy of jihad.” Now with almost a trillion dollars spent there with 4,500 American lives lost there, what do you say to those who say you were so wrong about so much at the expense of so many?”

MORE.


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Is Laura Ingraham Dissociating From The ‘War Party’?

Bush, Foreign Policy, Iraq, Neoconservatism, Republicans, War

Is broadcaster Laura Ingraham prepared to entertain the fact that her passionate populism may also require that she reject the War Party’s recreational wars? “Congressman Gutierrez,” she said on ABC’s Power House, “is closer to the Republican grassroots on this issue [Iraq], than the Republican leaders are. He’s on to something.”

What did Democratic Rep. Luis Gutierrez say?

“We shouldn’t have been in Iraq in the first place,” he said. “I voted against the incursion in Iraq. They said we would be welcomed as liberators; we weren’t. They said it was going to be paid for; it wasn’t. We should never have been there. This is a centuries-old fight between Sunnis and Shia.”


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Life On The (PC) Military Lunar Base

BAB's A List, Foreign Policy, Military, War

By Myron Pauli

As I wrote in “Government Begets Government,” insanity breeds more insanity. Take Afghanistan (please!) – where we are closing out our 13th year of “bringing democracy” and propping up Hamid Karzai, “mayor of Kabul” and the Maliki Thieu Diem Distinguished Professor Viceroy of Local Corrupt American Suckupology. Not only that but the US pays protection money to the Taliban to enable us to supply the various “lunar bases” that we maintain remotely to “fight the Taliban.” But as Al Jolson said, “You ain’t heard nuttin’ yet”.

Bowe Bergdahl joined the US Coast Guard, which kicked him out 26 days later because he was a mental case and couldn’t be trusted to rescue swimmers or board a yacht to search for marijuana. Afterwards, he spends 2 years in a Buddhist monastery and after rejection by the French Foreign Legion, he finds the employer of last resort: the US Army! Yes, fat or blind; transgendered or prostitute; quadriplegic or retarde; elderly or toddler; jihadist or just plain NUTS – the US Army wants you to “protect our freedoms.” Today’s loony is tomorrow’s Sergeant York! Eric Shinseki can design a special colored beret for the mentally ill.

Once over in Afghanistan “protecting our freedoms,” Bowe Bergdahl exhibited two contradictory behaviors: (a) becoming disillusioned with the war [a clear sign of sanity!!], and (b) otherwise acting unbalanced. But remember that this is the US Army where Major Nidal Malik Hasan is employed as a psychiatrist (bonus question: Why do the armed forces need psychiatrists as officers in uniform?) and ranting publicly about jihad for a year while no one does anything (presumably it is just normal Army behavior!). So, let’s see, we have a discontented wacko in our lunar base here but let’s not ship him home out of harm’s way but keep him here in Afghanistan.

Bowe walks off the lunar base into Talibanland and gets captured by them. How does the Army handle this? They PROMOTE him from E-3 private to Sergeant E-5. Had they not handed over 5 jihadists to “rescue” Bowe, he could have been promoted to Army Chief of Staff while a prisoner of the Taliban!

Although the Republicans are perfectly fine with Israel releasing 1000 Palestinians who killed 569 Israelis right next door in mortar/infiltration range; they are mortified over 5 jihadists joining up with 1 million others who hate our guts 10,000 miles away. However, they think nothing about the Bush and Obama drone-kills on wedding parties most likely creating 5 new jihadists for each bomb dropped! Insanity breeds more insanity.

Seasoned, decorated warriors like Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Mark Steyn, Dianne Feinstein, and Ann Coulter all want Colonel (??!!) Bowe Bergdahl hung out to dry as the new Benedict Arnold. These seasoned superpatriots care less about those who have come home tragically with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder like Staff Sergeant Travis Twiggs. Twiggs watched his men mutilated in front of him by an improvised explosive device and came back home with PTSD, only to get overdoses of drugs but no real help from Bethesda Naval Hospital (Malik Hasan??). He wound up killing himself and his brother after a carjacking in Arizona. Suicides or homicides caused by PTSD struck veterans naturally does not count as “war deaths.”

Like that exemplary soldier Lynndie England of Abu Ghraib fame, Bowe will be scapegoated for “endangering our liberties” while the Rumsfelds, Hagels, Cheneys, and Bidens receive $10,000,000 for documenting their murderous memoirs and receive their “Medals of Freedom.”

Two weeks from now, on the 4th of July, we will all listen to the bloviating pundits praising the troops who are “preserving our liberties” – the old men in wheelchairs who fought for Diem and Thieu 50 years ago and the younger ones who got maimed on behalf of rival Shiite and Sunni religious fanatics in Iraq and Afghanistan. The occasional “nutcase” who says “Blessed are the peacemakers” usually gets ignored or crucified.

To truly understand the nature of war, watch this 5 minute video of the end of Bridge on the River Kwai on Youtube: where warfare is all summarized at the end: “Madness. MADNESS.”

******
Barely a Blog (BAB) contributor Myron Pauli grew up in Sunnyside Queens, went off to college in Cleveland and then spent time in a mental institution in Cambridge MA (MIT) with Benjamin Netanyahu (did not know him), and others until he was released with the “hostages” and Jimmy Carter on January 20, 1981, having defended his dissertation in nuclear physics. Most of the time since, he has worked on infrared sensors, mainly at Naval Research Laboratory in Washington DC. He was NOT named after Ron Paul but is distantly related to physicist Wolftgang Pauli; unfortunately, only the “good looks” were handed down and not the brains. He writes assorted song lyrics and essays reflecting his cynicism and classical liberalism. Click on the “BAB’s A List” category to access the Pauli archive.


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