Notes on the Atrocities
Like a 100-watt radio station, broadcasting to the dozens...

Friday, April 11, 2003  

It's such a wild scene, it's hard to know what to say. On the one hand, the chickenhawks are gloating at their "success." Adelman, he of the "cakewalk" prediction, wrote yesterday:

"Administration critics should feel shock over their bellyaching about the wayward war plan. All of us feel awe over the professionalism and power of the U.S. military. Now we know....

"Other commentators were far scarier. Any U.S. attempt at 'regime change' would, they warned, trigger Scud and other missile attacks to obliterate Israel and U.S. troops stationed in the region; provoke the igniting of hundreds, no thousands, of Iraqi oil fields; prompt a wave of terrorism across America; impel mobs into the Arab street to foment revolution against 'friendly regimes'; cause flooding across Iraqi plains; induce Saddam Hussein, his back against the wall, to attack us and his own people with chemical and biological weapons

(Nice to see the hawks have got their eye on the ball: scoring political points.) On the other hand, there appear to be mobs fomenting revolution against--well, hard to say, amid all the chaos. They're sure fomenting something.

In fact, this bloody mess of looting and lawlessness--not to mention the assassinations, Kurdish agression--was perfectly predictable. Well, predictable by a random blogger in Oregon, anyway, if not by the US military. If anything, it's further evidence of a hugely botched operation.

Among the predictable, yet somehow unanticipated horrors going on in Iraq:

• As chaos rises, the hospital system is breaking down.
• Archaelogical artifacts looted.
Suicide bombings begin, leading to civilian casualties.
• Turkey's becoming agitated and is ready to send in the troops.

Apparently, along with the expectation that the Iraqis would greet Americans as conquering heroes, the White House forsaw a scene of social bliss following the liberation. My question is: at what point do Americans--the two-thirds who think the war is going swimmingly, that is--begin to regard our leadership as grossly unprepared for the task at hand? When does the word incompetence start to figure in prominently. How about now: this whole operation was an exercise in incompetence.

posted by Jeff | 2:30 PM |
Blogroll and Links