Saturday, December 16, 2006

In Farewell, Rumsfeld Warns Weakness Is ‘Prooovocative’

“Today, it should be clear that not only is weakness provocative,” Mr. Rumsfeld
said, standing at a lectern with President Bush...
From the NY Times story copied below. Recall previous missives from me highlighting the Administration's and the Pentagon's belief that "ideology" is the main factor behind this "war" -- such as it is -- undeclared or otherwise, and their cluelessness of how important ideology actually is (or even what it is).

This latest comment from Rumsfeld himself just underscores how completely clueless (definition: not having any clue whatsover) he, Bush and unfortunately too many military leaders in the Pentagon are -- an organization that ostensibly is devoted to warfighting and which now believes pacifist nonsense such as "winning the peace" is a mantra for victory.

(Put aside the Democrats -- they're just too often treasonously arrogant or stupid.)

They should all be given mandatory lessons on WWII and specifically MacArthur's approach to pacifying Japan, which was as militant a culture as the Islamic one. (See Dr. John Lewis's previous remarks, essays and future book on this topic.)

Is weakness provocative? HELL YES. But the Administration doesn't have a clue how completely, utterly weak they've projected the United States of America to be over the last few years by failing to promote the correct ideas (ie, individual rights instead of "democracy", which has only led to a quasi-socialist theocracy in a soon-to-be Iranian puppet state), by failing to bomb mosques after being fired on from them (sacrificing our soldiers to the "religious sensibilities" of the very ideology we are fighting and proving we hold their religion more valuable than our own people), and by failing to stomp the enemy into dust when the so-called "insurgency" started. Ie, by flattening Fallujah, killing Muqtada Al Sadr, bombing Al Jazeera's offices, and above all, taking the war to the real instigators, Iran, Syria, and Saudi Arabia.

Hell, no. Instead, the clueless fools in the Administration actually believe they've fought this "war" in an aggressive manner. They don't even have the first concept of what "aggressive" warfighting is. Aggressive means -- kill the enemy at his root. Defeat the bastards by destroying their supply lines, their lines of ideas, and the leaders who promote them.

Ie, if Iran and Syria or Pakistan want to send fighters in to Iraq, we *had* to go into Iran and Syria and Pakistan, or those places would fight us. As they have.

If the Saudis want to play a song and dance with us while continuing to fund our enemy, we had to depose that 7th century sheikdom, take over their country, and shut down the ideology machine that spends millions and millions every year to promote 7th century barbarism around the world.

If any of these places want to wage a propaganda war to foment enemies worldwide against us and undercut our resolve at home, we *had* to go in, cut off and kill their propaganda machines, their specious "news" organizations, and shut down the schools teaching an entire generation lies and evil ideology so they can become our future enemy.

If our enemies, whereever they may reside, insist on believing their ideology is a righteous cause, we had to go in to destroy their moral righteousness and undercut their certainty in that evil ideology. Make them doubt the ideas that led to this war. Blast their supporters into paradise and **make the survivors grovel** for permission to exist and the crime of having waged war against us.

Make them admit *they were wrong* simply by confronting them with the reality of their unreal ideas. That is how you keep from making "weakness provocative", how you combat evil ideology (at least, one that has morphed into actual killers) and how you win a war quickly -- with far less loss of life for either you or your enemy -- and permanently eliminate the threat.

Yet we did none of that. Those machines keep on churning out ideologues and fighters who battle us. That is why we are losing.

Instead, **every single action** of this clueless Administration has been to prove to our enemy that we are weak, vacillating, to be manipulated, to made fools of (for sure Ahmadinejad goes to bed laughing at us every night), that we have no confidence in ourselves, our own ideas. Every action of the Bush Administration has been to prove we **can be defeated**.

That is why we are losing everywhere in this war, not just in Iraq. They just don't get it, as demonstrated by Rummy's comment in the story below, and the last quote there:
"“This is a time of great consequence,” he said. “It may well be comforting to
some to consider graceful exits from the agonies and, indeed, the ugliness of
combat. But the enemy thinks differently.”"
They certainly do. But so do our own leaders, who simply can't grasp (or are too afraid to grasp) how ugly and aggressive and wide in scope the combat really needs to get if we are to win -- and how quickly war needs to be fought if we are to win at all. The tired litany from this Administration about how this war will take a lifetime to win is the clueless stuff of those who don't understand the necessity of ferocious attack, of those afraid to engage the enemy, and of those who would sign our death warrants and wait for 7th century barbarians to wear us down. (Ask the Romans.)

Because of that, this war is only going to get worse with time, instead of being over 5 years ago, as it could have been, and we will all be poorer cause of it.
In Farewell, Rumsfeld Warns Weakness Is ‘Provocative’

Stephen Crowley/The New York Times
Published: December 16, 2006

WASHINGTON, Dec. 15 — Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld bade farewell to the Pentagon on Friday with a combative valedictory speech in which he warned against hoping for “graceful exits” from Iraq and said it would be wrong to regard the lack of new attacks on American soil as a sign that the nation is safe from terrorism.

“Today, it should be clear that not only is weakness provocative,” Mr. Rumsfeld said, standing at a lectern with President Bush and Vice President Dick Cheney at his side, “but the perception of weakness on our part can be provocative as well.”

It was a clear parting shot at those considering a withdrawal from war that would define his legacy and perhaps that of the president.

“A conclusion by our enemies that the United States lacks the will or the resolve to carry out missions that demand sacrifice and demand patience is every bit as dangerous as an imbalance of conventional military power,” Mr. Rumsfeld said in a buoyant but sometimes emotional speech.

Mr. Rumsfeld resigned in November after an election in which Democrats won control of Congress by promising to force change in Iraq. His successor, Robert M. Gates, takes over on Monday.

Mr. Rumsfeld spoke after receiving full honors on the Pentagon grounds on his last day of work there. The ceremonies began with a 19-gun salute before he walked the grounds to inspect the representatives from all the service branches gathered in formation and in full dress.

Present in the crowd were some of the former administration hawks with whom he planned the invasions of Afghanistan and Iraq: Paul D. Wolfowitz, his former deputy, and Douglas J. Feith, his under secretary for defense policy. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, his frequent rival in Mr. Bush’s cabinet, did not attend.

The ceremony brought to a close perhaps the most controversial tenure for a secretary of defense since that of Robert McNamara, whose record tenure in the job bested Mr. Rumsfeld’s by a mere 10 days. Like Mr. McNamara, Mr. Rumsfeld leaves a war he helped conceive in the hands of others.

And like Mr. McNamara, his record is likely to be dissected and debated for years after his resignation.

Yet for all of its pomp, there was little talk at the ceremony about Mr. Rumsfeld’s famously combative style or the controversies he tended to provoke.

In opening remarks, Gen. Peter Pace, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, did refer indirectly to the Abu Ghraib torture scandal, which Mr. Rumsfeld has called the low mark of his tenure. But General Pace did so in complimenting Mr. Rumsfeld for ultimately taking the blame for prisoner abuses for which the general placed blame on others down the chain of command.

Mr. Cheney’s declaration that “Don Rumsfeld is the finest secretary of defense the nation has ever had,” was more in keeping with the tone of the event.

With Mr. Rumsfeld’s resignation — forced by Mr. Bush as he seeks a new approach in Iraq — Mr. Cheney is losing one of his closest allies in the administration.

Mr. Rumsfeld hired Mr. Cheney to work in the Ford administration. Both men served as White House chief of staff, in the House of Representatives and as secretary of defense. (Mr. Rumsfeld has been secretary of defense twice, the first time for President Ford.)

And their shared post-Sept. 11 conviction that the United States must use strength as a deterrent and pre-emptively strike at those who plan to attack the nation has remained unbowed in the face of setbacks in Iraq.

“In this hour of transition every member of our military, and every person at the Pentagon, can be certain that America will stay on the offensive,” Mr. Cheney said. “We will stay in the fight until this threat is defeated and our children and grandchildren can live in a safer world.”

Mr. Rumsfeld leaves the Pentagon having overseen two wars, an attack on the Pentagon itself and what he called a “transformation” in the use of force. That involved a switch to smaller fighting units that he said would be nimbler and more effective than larger ones favored in the past — an approach that saw early success in Afghanistan but has faced a more severe test in Iraq.

Mr. Bush was known to have appreciated Mr. Rumsfeld’s efforts, even as calls for the defense secretary’s resignation grew louder, and he indicated as much on Friday. “There has been more profound change at the Department of Defense over the past six years than at any time since the department’s creation in the late 1940s,” Mr. Bush said. “These changes were not easy, but because of Don Rumsfeld’s determination and leadership, America has the best equipped, the best trained, and most experienced armed forces in the history of the world.”

Mr. Rumsfeld had the last words of the day, using them to warn against backing down in Iraq. “This is a time of great consequence,” he said. “It may well be comforting to some to consider graceful exits from the agonies and, indeed, the ugliness of combat. But the enemy thinks differently.”

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