Dumb and dumber…

Ok folks, it�s official; the Bush administration is nothing but a bunch of children.

Yesterday�s announcement by Asst. Secretary of Defense, Paul Wolfowitz, that any country who opposed the Iraq war would be excluded from bidding on reconstruction contracts in Iraq is just childish and a wee bit insane.

The U.S. is going to spend (so far) $87 billion on rebuilding the schools, the roads, the water supply utilities, ports and a number of other very important things that either got blown up by invasion forces or fell apart after a decade of sanctions made it impossible for Saddam Hussein to both maintain his nation�s infrastructure and maintain his rule (naturally, being a dictator and all, he chose to maintain his rule). Anyone can see that that�s a big chunk of change. Allowing France, Russia, Germany, Canada, etc. to bid on those projects would have given them a vested interest in the success of not only the reconstruction of Iraq, but also in the success of the current military mission the US, UK and a few other countries are engaged in, namely putting down the insurgency.

With a vested interest in ending the insurgency in Iraq France, Germany, Russia, Canada and others might have been inclined to invest some troops to the job, thus alleviating the burden, which now falls most heavily on the United States. Good grief guys, this was a no-brainer.

Never mind the fact that you�ve excluded the most economically and politically powerful western nations from this deal, you�ve also just written out most of the nations of the Arab and Asian world. So much for building a coalition force of primarily Arabic speaking troops to bring order to Iraq.

Wolfy, Donald� I gotta hand it to ya. You stick by your guns. You hate coalitions. Your goal for this mess in Iraq was just short of annexation. The point of this little adventure was to secure a permanent US outpost on the limes in the Middle Eastern portion of the American empire. What better way to make sure that Dubya (who is your boss, by the way) doesn�t get worried about his poll numbers heading into an election and do an end run on you guys. You have to know as well as anyone that little George is losing points every day with the voters because of the mess you�ve made in Iraq. More than likely a few of his re-election advisors are telling him that the best way to take the wind out of Howard Dean�s sails would be to eliminate the Iraq issue from the debate by doing his best imitation of his father, building a broad international coalition and handing control of most of what�s going on in Iraq over to the UN. But if he does that then your plans for a big fat permanent US military base in the Persian Gulf, in the most strategically desirable location possible, will go up in a puff of smoke. So, you appeal to his frat boy sensibilities with this little petty slap in the face at folks we used to consider our allies. It would impressive, Paul, if it weren�t so absolutely moronic.

The occupation force in Iraq is undersized. The insurgency is growing in both the number of its attacks on occupying forces and their complexity. If the situation isn�t brought into hand very soon Iraq could very easily degenerate into a state of civil war, and begin to rapidly resemble Somalia. If that happens you can bet the Turks, the Iranians and the Saudis are going to get very nervous. You can probably expect the Saudis to do little more than guard their border fearfully, but the Turks will cross the border and start seizing territory and claim to be doing it in the interest of protecting their own territory. This will also be an excuse for them to come down like a ten-ton anvil on the Kurds, who are, by the way, probably the only people in that country who don�t outright despise the US. The Iranians will, no doubt, support the Shiites in the southern parts of Iraq, and might even send troops of their own across the border. You know, I stand corrected. Iraq in a state of civil war won�t resemble Somalia so much as it will Lebanon in the 1980s.

Contrary to what you, Rummy, Cheney and your pal Richard Pearle think, the US cannot fight major conflicts in multiple locations. Care to speculate as to how cooperative the North Koreans are likely to be at the negotiating table if they know that the biggest portion of the US military is bogged down in the midst of a civil war in Iraq? What will you do then? Ask the UN for help? How hard do you think Kofi would laugh at that one? And what about the response at home if US troops are getting offed by insurgents at any higher rate than they are today? What do you think our most important ally in Iraq, Britain, is going to do if their soldiers start getting whacked just as furiously? Blair�s government wouldn�t last a week under that circumstance.

Nice mess you�ve made guys. You may actually manage to go down in history as a worse Presidential administration than that of Ulysses S. Grant�s. That�s something.

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