Arrogance, ignorance invite disaster
August 11, 2006
BY ANDREW GREELEY
In a war, as Secretary Rumsfeld says, stuff happens. Things go wrong, sometimes a lot goes wrong, on occasion everything goes wrong. Then you have a fiasco (the title of the best book about Iraq, written by Thomas E. Ricks).
Military history is filled with fiasco stories -- the French army at Agincourt or the Union army at Fredericksburg. A more recent fiasco was Operation Market Garden in the autumn of 1944, a scheme cooked up by British Marshal Bernard Law Montgomery. The Germans, driven out of France, were falling back behind the Siegfried line. Montgomery desperately wanted to win the war by himself. The plan was for his British 2nd Army to run around the end of the line and go on to Berlin. Three airborne divisions (two American, one British) would secure bridges over the Rhine at Nijmegen, Enthoven and Arnheim. An armored corps of the 2d Army would drive up the road, cross the Rhine and strike into Germany.
It was an ingenious scheme, at least on paper. It turned into a fiasco (recorded in the book A Bridge Too Far and a film of the same name). The U.S. airborne divisions captured the first two bridges. The British failed to capture the bridge at Arnheim and their armored corps moved too slowly. The English paratroop division was destroyed and the war went on. Why the failure? Market Garden was developed in less than two weeks. The intelligence was inadequate. There were more Germans moving into Holland than Montgomery realized. There were not enough paratroop divisions. The armored corps was not strong enough and moved too slowly. The causes: arrogance and ignorance. The result: fiasco.
This paradigm matches the Iraq war: terrible intelligence, inadequate planning, not enough troops, underestimating the enemy. More arrogance and ignorance. Only the size of the fiasco is much larger, a terrible blow to the U.S. military and American prestige for the next decade. The pessimism among American leaders at the Senate Committee last week was palpable. There might be a civil war and, if there is, there is little America can do but get out of the way. Probably the worst fiasco in American history, worse than Pearl Harbor.
In the years to come people will ask why did they do it? They had been warned about what would happen and they went ahead anyway. The Congress and the media did not protest. Were they out of their minds?
The answer, I suspect, is yes, we all were out of our minds. Osama bin Laden in his wildest dreams could not have imagined that the United States would have responded to the World Trade Center attack with such madness. Ricks, the Washington Post's Pentagon reporter, points out that the columnists and editorial writers at his paper and the New York Times supported the war at the beginning.
Most of these writers, sentinels against government failures, have changed their minds as sanity begins to return, but they have yet to admit their mistakes and take responsibility. Thomas Friedman of the Times, its all-purpose pontifical expert on the Middle East, has finally announced, yes, it is time to call a peace conference among Iraq parties and get out. Where was he three years ago? Why doesn't he admit flat-out that he was wrong and apologize? Why doesn't he say that he was swept along by the 9/11 frenzy and the blatant lies of the administration, and that he ought to have known better? Why doesn't he credit those of us who warned all along that Iraq was worse even than Vietnam? Why doesn't he concede he, too, failed the American people by not standing up to the frenzy sweeping the country? Why doesn't he criticize the media, which propounded the false cliché that America would never be the same again and the misleading shibboleth "war on global terror''?
Arrogance and ignorance were not limited to the administration. Friedman, David Brooks, Robert Kagan and James Hoagland failed in their duty to cry "hold, enough!" We should not permit them to change their minds until they admit full responsibility for the fiasco, which has given bin Laden his biggest victory yet.
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Why don't all you brainwashed Bushbackers watch Loose Change version II by Daryl Avery. I can't believe the number of ignorant posts out there...any of you morons know what cordite is? Ever see a building demolished...how it collapses in on itself? Any of you know the temp required to melt the steel infrastructure of the Twin Towers, seeing that flame and heat rises? It wasn't jet fuel leaking down to the bottom floors there Billy Bob!Those buildings were made to withstand a hit from a plane.
It does not take 1000 cheap cell phones to detonate bombs. Or perhaps it does if you are swarthy-looking. Maybe the guys just wanted to sell them? Just the kind of "patriotic" coots out there that gave Hitler his rise to power...using the same tactics like burning the Reichstag and blaming it on enemies.
Coming next to mobilize all patriots...Bird Flu!
My question is to Cecil. Are YOU with "fish-head" in his summation? WOW, what a quack!
you are wasting your breath. you (and Greely ) have made the point as well as one can, but remember, this administration has brainwashed many of it's supporters in the name of TERRORISM. They use fear and didn't a little paperhanger use fear to spawn the second world war and commit Genocide.
Their problem is that they do not read or understand history. The arrogance of this administration has cost us dearly. As a retired Marine vet who fought in South East asia, I witnessed the same arrogance with Presidents Johnson and Nixon . I know it is hard for Presidents to admit to making a mistake but it's time for ours to do just that, and bring home our most prized possesions, our young men and women.
was the stuff the primer cords were made of, burns like a 1000 feet per second or some other incredible speed, probably faster. The cell phones can be taken apart and used to make dirty bombs, just like smoke detectors.
Umm, since Ive seen the videos of the towers collapsing its fairly evident to even the most simplest of minds, the collapse DID NOT begin from the ground up like buildings being demolished. They went from the top down, either right where, or just above where the planes struck. Now that I think of it, yes heat does rise and jet fuel would not have been the only fuel for the fire, every flamable item there would be sure to go up. That and all the broken windows, stairwells, and elevator shafts would provide more than enough oxygen to get the fire torch hot. Add that to the structural damage caused by the planes and I believe thats more like what caused the collapse. Look, I aint no rocket scientist, hell, I only completed half a semester of college, and I can't spell that either, but I think your reading to many Tom Clancy novels.
Now then, perhaps you'd care to tell us which government agency did the hiring, and then the name of the demolitions company who did the planting of the explosives. Seems to me there's some mighty incompetent people working for both. First, of all days they picked to nock the towers down a bunch of morons fly planes into them. Secondly, the company they hired cant tell the difference between the bottom floor and the top third of the building.
So now Cecil has a follower in the conspiracy theories. Thats right, we bombed our own buildings for the sake of the Bush administration, geesh, what a bunch of intellectually dishonest morons. Throw in some revisionist history, a little misdirection and you have the makings of...well...Cecil! hahahahahahah
isnt it amazing of the whack jobs that still latch on to any and all theories only for the sake of their hatred towards the Bush admin. Of course some mistakes have been made with the war, its human nature to make them (the likes of Cecil, Lou and others et al never make mistakes). Cecil, the pessimism you "see" from the senate or the house is pursuant to the upcoming elections and the "need" for the lawyer/candidate to follow certain polls and maintain their jobs. Any open-minded person can look at those undeniable truths.
I didn't realize there were so many libs on this site. D you can't be that dumb or are you just talking stupid just to get a rise out of the people with common scense. If you knew even a little about construction and engineering you would know that towers came down from heat warping and weakening the steel beams. My dad said the towers would fall shotly after the planes hit. He was a superintendendent for a construction company for 34 years. He ran the job sites and managed the construction of steel structures like those that fell. The heat weakens the main supports. When they give way and the weight from above collapse onto the structure below. The lower structure takes the blow from the weight landing on it causing more stress on the lower beams. this continues collapsing down to the ground going faster as gravity pulls and the weight load increases on the structure. Demolition workers do the same thing. They don't blow up a building, they weaken the main structual supports with explosives. They go all the way from the bottom to the top to weakening the supports with the explosives and to use the building weight to control the collapse and make sure it does what they want. That is what there job is. They get paid to do it right and not half way and see if it works.
quite a few libs here...just peruse thru some of the past posts and you can easily identify the wackos. One person in particular is that stupid as he portrays. It gets funny at times to watch them squirm when truths are thrown at them from different angles...lol...good luck and keep the duct tape ready to wrap your head...
Try reading history. Kennedy had the whole thing set up, including a fake ariplane crash to incite an invasion of Cuba. Nero burned Rome...who did he blame it on. Hitler and the Reichstag. Before you blubber out trash like Bush, watch Loose Change and get the facts from engineers, firemen on the scene, and airplane engineers. Look at the facts you will not see on Fox News.Any yes Dean, I understand how buildings are dmeolished from the bottom to knock out supports. It seems plenty of folks heard the explosions in lower levels that provided this. There are variations on this them though. Where did the "plane" go that hit the Pentagon? Where were all our fighters that could have taken these guys out? Stay tuned...more to come...elections right around the corner!
you sound like a conspiracy theorist to me...anyone else see this? And Cecil...did you know that your beloved Andrew Greeley is a priest that writes soft-porn novels? Anyone else wanted to look at Cecil's link cna see what kind of a phony the Friar is as well
that are put up by the lunatic fringe who are smoking pot and wondering where they will get their next paycheck from. Anyone with enough time can take the facts and edit and twist and photoshop their agenda and pass it off as factual...ref. Michael Moore. I understand your need to find fault with the world you live in but it makes no sense for anyone over the age of 35 to believe in sci-fi blogs and web sites.
own internet search the flight that hit the pentagon was flight 77.
what happened to the plane?
where are the photos of the wreckage after the impact?
i couldnt find any on the net can anybody?
what happened to the plane? or was it a rocket fired at the plane that crashed in pennsylvania but missed and struck the pentagon instead? mmmmm
or has everyone been mixing bondo all day. Saying a rocket hit the pentagon has got to be the dumbest thing I've heard all week. Maybe, just maybe, it's possible that the plane was obliterated upon impact.
Just so I dont get lumped into the [expletive deleted] Bush camp let's set it straight. He's as big a moron as anyone else who was up for election the last time around. His saving grace and only reason he got my vote was his stance on guns and hunting. Too bad he can't refrain from pushing his religious beliefs, say for example, abortion. If he's such a fine upstanding Christian, how bout he adopts a few kids, preferable anyone not white. Hell, while we're really reaching here, how bout the all have some defect as well, crack babie, AIDS kid, or someone else who desperately needs help.
so don't lump me into that. Addtionally I don't remember the piece I posted saying anything about that.
Here's a great Rumsfeld quote to show you what at great military strategist the mastermind of the Iraqi invasion is:
"It is unknowable how long that conflict [the war in Iraq] will last. It could last six days, six weeks. I doubt six months." D.Rumsfeld Feb. 2003
Yeah, everybody who smokes pot is a lunatic, just like all Muslims...it can distort your mind...not like alcohol and other drugs sanctioned by the our mighty leaders, and abused by them, as well as whoring and every other no-no you perfect angels find offensive. Soft porn...ooooh...that sound almost like normal folks enjoying sex...bad bad bad! You are pathetic.
Cecil may be way out to the left, but he at least can see the real world and doesn't seem to buy into all the conspericy theories out there. Like the most of us on the right, and even some on the left, like Cecil, we do actually care about America and care about the the people and families that lost their lives on 9-11. I'm sure he cares cares about the soldiers that fought lost their lives for the freedom we have. Looking at the above post- you can't put Cecil into the same class as the goof ball nut job D.. the fish head. Cecil didn't say anything about the conspiracy theories. He may be way left in his beliefs but that is his right, and we can disagree all day long in almost everything he says. That is our right also. Even though I don't know Cecil, he at least seems to care for our country and when push came to shove he would be there with the rest of us. Unlike D.. guys like that have the right to say what he wants because of those that died gave him the right. He is so screwed up and to say and believe in the crap he is spouting is treasonus. It is about un-American as you can get. Yet he is allowed to live in this great country and allowed to put down the very country that protects him and gives him his freedom. I can't write what I really want to say about him or anyone else that puts down the country with these conspiracy theories. Cecil, I must be over-tired or something. I was sticking up for you. Sorry, I'll try harder next time so it won't happen again.
So tell me do you feel dirty all over?
Here's why there is no conspiracy regarding 9/11
1.) The Bush administration is too incompetent to have pulled it off
2.) There is no way in hell it could be kept underwraps. Too many people would have to be in on it and that is not possible.
Never forget that.
so in your opinion when the plane hit the pentagon every single piece of that plane was destroyed, gone, toasted, missing forever?
including those big engines?
the damage, explosion, fire & heat were not even close to what happened at the trade center if it was the pentagon wouldnt have been there either.
all i wanted to know is what happened to the plane, every single photo is GONE...where is flight 77?
the only planes we hear about are the two that hit the towers and the one that crashed in Pennsylvania.
the rest is pure theory and conspiracy fodder.
It was presumptive of me to lump Cecil with the freaks and their conspiracy theories...I had hoped that he (Cecil) would have debunked them as much as he tries to debunk anyone who thinks or believes different from him. To Cecil, I apologize, but ask that you help blow these serious nut jobs outta the water with truth. No I dont know what happened to the aircraft parts. I'm sure someone has seen things to verify a plane hit the pentagon or the field in PA, but to start casting dispersions on the forensic evidence is like suggesting the moon landing was a hoax...has anyone REALLY seen the proof of that? hahaha All I ask is that people start facing life without blinders on. The 9/11 commission was comprised of people from both political parties with a wide varyance of views but not ONE said anything about a possible hoax or conspiracy (other than al-queda). Unless they are in on the hoax as well! hahahaha go figure...
GOOGLE that and get ready to have your mind blown.
You'll have to read down some to get to that part.
Some fictional novel and movie comes out (which wasn't very good btw) and you fundaMENTALISTS get your panties in a wad. Get real.
I am in no way refering to the Davinci Code.
Do you think a fundaMENTALIST Christian would stand behind that?
I encourage you instead of taking the easy way out and calling it bunk and fantasy...follow some of the leads and you will find OVERWHELMING evidence of its existence.
It is even responsible for the charade that is "Left" and "Right" in our politics.
"The individual is handicapped by coming face-to-face with a conspiracy so monstrous he cannot believe it exists." J. Edgar Hoover
try this and see what you think.