Tuesday, August 31, 2010

VI Day

Just in case we weren't aware just how wonderful things are in Iraq these days, Obama is going to remind us this evening. I doubt that he'll use the phrase 'Victory in Iraq', but that will be the implication, meriting at least a yawn from the pundit class.

The most accomplished military technique the US has these days is manipulating public perception using carefully chosen words and phrases to create a reality with no relation to actuality. Kidnapping, torture and assassination are the main facts on the ground in the GWOT, support, advice, non-combat, etc. are the terms that are chosen to hide that actuality.

Of course, this technique is not limited to the Pentagon. Obama's economic 'team' plays the same game, with the same results, though the actuality is harder to hide from the US public.

And lo and behold, the same pattern of obfuscating reality was used for the Gulf oil disaster. It is Obama's main claim to fame, the relentless manufacturing of a bogus reality, while continuously papering over of the spreading cracks in the edifice.

Unfortunately for him, it looks like the cracks are getting too big and run to deep to allow him to serve out the remainder of his term in this way, let alone serve out another. The addle-brained US public is being roused from their torpor by Fox News and Glenn Beck, and while the bogus solutions offered to the bogus problems can only make matters worse, a sacrifice will be required to appease the gods, and Barack Obama seems tailor made to play the part of the victim.

UPDATE: The Bushian Operation Iraqi Freedom has been renamed the Obamaian Operation New Dawn!

Thursday, August 26, 2010

The corruption divide

Scott Horton at Harper's:
American policy towards corruption in Central Asia is thus exposed as schizophrenic. On the one hand the United States purports to be resolutely opposed to corruption and prepared to spend enormous sums to expose and prosecute it in the interest of transparency, good government, and saving the taxpayers the expense of corrupt contracts. FBI agents and prosecutors are being moved into the field and are pursuing an unprecedented number of prosecutions in U.S. courts. But on the other hand, it is increasingly apparent that the United States is itself one of the most staggeringly corrupt actors in the region, willing to slide hundreds of millions of dollars under the carpet to foreign government officials to induce them to do Washington’s bidding, on occasion doing this so crudely that it undermines the credibility of the government it has picked as an ally. Indeed, twice now American bribery operations targeting a foreign head of state helped provoke revolutions that toppled a government. Pursuing both of these policies at the same time exposes the United States to well-warranted charges of hypocrisy. Policy-makers in Washington urgently need to settle the question: on which side of the corruption divide do they want to stand?
On both sides, obviously. Corruption is a tool of US policies, so is anti-corruption. Protecting civilians is another tool, so is slaughtering them.

The US has a collection of policies, and a collection of tools. Most are contradictory, ineffective, and pointless, so what? The main task is to keep the contradictory, ineffective, and pointless machine running at all costs. The hopeless task of central Asian domination, to be paid for by the Iraq conquest, has been dead since Cheney was deposed back in '06. But the machine will continue running so long as it is fueled and oiled by the dwindling resources available.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Getting ahead by giving head

Tonight's extended and unrelenting fellatio of Gen. Odierno by PBS's Margaret Warner was, 'tis true, just an amplification of PBS's normal cocksucking ways with the US government in general and its military in particular.

Still, it was something to behold. Embedded, indeed.

The General's conviction that he is responsible for US policy in Iraq was on full display, egged on with lip smacking gusto by Warner. Since Petraeus has been moved over to Afghanistan, Gates is on his way out, and the so-called President is vacationing and plotting his election strategy for the next decade, he may be right.

The man is obviously a second-rater, but with the vacuum that surrounds him, and Margaret's unrestrained affection, even second-raters might dream imperial thoughts. The spectacle the Iraqis put on in the above linked video (no, not the picture) shows that they know that Odierno will be calling the shots there for the foreseeable future.

Monday, August 16, 2010


It's the new politics.

Those of us who believed that the sewer of US politics oozed at a level of absolute bottom have been proven wrong, once again. The 'Ground Zero Mosque' story, following hard on the heels of the 'Mexican drug-lords are beheading your daughter' story has shown that there ain't no bottom, politicians, with CNN's help, can lower the level of discourse to infinity. It's the black hole of politics, it sucks in everyone and everything.

It was a great opportunity for Barack Obama to show, once again, what a cowardly weasel he is, and where Barack goes, can Harry Reid be far behind?

This is another issue where the Dems can find the spirit of true bipartisanship. Setting up acceptable areas for Muslims to worship is a task for both parties, while they're at it, a good jobs program might be setting up barriers, like in Baghdad, where Muslims would feel safe inside as they go about their incomprehensible lives. Or maybe it might be more logical, and less socialistic to put them in camps, along with illegal immigrants. That could be done by the private sector, and we would avoid government inefficiency and waste.

Alas, I fear that no matter how much the Dems try to tag along, the Repubs will lead on so fast that true bipartisanship will remain a dream in the eye of Obama and the NYT. Like with Lucy's football, they'll kick all they can, but never make contact.