Robert H. Scales- Yet Another “Convert.”

Scales "Bean counters in the Pentagon tell us that Army recruitment and retention are in good shape. Problem is, our cumbersome readiness reporting system only informs leaders in Washington of conditions on the ground many months after the force begins to break. Today, anecdotal evidence of collapse is all around. Past history makes some of us sensitive to anecdotes and distrustful of Pentagon statistics. The Army’s collapse after Vietnam was presaged by a desertion of mid-grade officers (captains) and non-commissioned officers. Many were killed or wounded. Most left because they and their families were tired and didn’t want to serve in units unprepared for war.
    If we lose our sergeants and captains, the Army breaks again. It’s just that simple. That’s why these soldiers are still the canaries in the readiness coal-mine. And, again, if you look closely, you will see that these canaries are fleeing their cages in frightening numbers.
    The lesson from this sad story is simple: When you fight a long war with a long-service professional Army, the force you begin with will not get any larger or better over the duration of the conflict. For that reason, today’s conditions are pretty much irreversible. There’s not much that money, goodwill or professed support for the troops can do. Another strange consequence is that the current political catfight over withdrawal dates is made moot by the above facts. We’re running out of soldiers faster than we’re running out of warfighting missions. The troops will be coming home soon. There simply are too few to sustain the surge for very much longer. "  Scales


MG Robert Scales has been a military analyst for Fox News, and was a counselor to Rumsfeld.  He helped create the situation that he complains of now.  He should go and hide somewhere and not walk abroad among the living.  pl

Just to see what this fellow has been like in the past read this book review by him.

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44 Responses to Robert H. Scales- Yet Another “Convert.”

  1. jonst says:

    So what do you make of this PL? What is the reaction going to be around DC to this? Et tu Scales? What must Rummy be thinking right now? AH, what am I writing? It will just be one more piece of unpleasant information to be, initially, rationalized, and then ultimately discarded.

  2. Lurch says:

    Undoubtedly much of what MG Scales says is accurate. This Army will fall apart for many of the same reasons the 1970s Army did. One of the most egregious and fatal is careerism, whose footprint is “management” rather than “leadership.” There is a strong suspicion that at a certain level officers direct their loyalty to political leaders rather than remaining focused on the institution itself.
    But the midlevel leaders Scales speaks of are not “deserting” the Army. They are abandoning it.

  3. PSD says:

    thanks Gen. Scales. Just where the hell were you in 2002-03?….note he says NOTHING about the fact that he supported the war from the beginning. Nope, he just wipes his hands and walks away. And notice he also says “I’m afraid your Army is broken, a victim of too many missions for too few soldiers for too long.” Notice he says “your” army? Now that its broken, it’s “ours” I guess.
    no integrity there……………………

  4. Babak Makkinejad says:

    Col. Lang:
    He was probably drinking kool-aid somewhere.
    The problem with an all volunteer force, beside the recruiting issue at times such as this, is that it prevents the pain to be felt by the civilian population (excepting the families and relations of the soldiers).
    This contributes to the feeling of immunity and complacency of the population. It akin to having a surgeon cut the nerves to your hand and then you stick your fingers into the fire; “Look Ma, it does not hurt one bit!”.
    Really, US should have military draft for both young men and young women so that fantasy projects such as this are at least seriously considered.

  5. J says:

    Seems that MG Scales forgot one of the most important tenents of command, a tenent that you have stressed on more than one occassion — command is a sacred trust. And Bush and their propaganda outlet Foxnews do NOT know the first thing about ‘sacred trust’. Scales/Rumsfeld/Bush/Foxnews – they are the blind leading and following the blind.

  6. Michael says:

    Funny – it almost sounds as though he’s suggesting this kind of ‘war math’ was obvious.
    Makes it sadly ironic to find out he was one of the people pushing this forward with Rummy.

  7. Charles says:

    Convert or rat off a sinking ship, what about it, folks who know: will the army break before ’08?

  8. Tim Ryder says:

    Col. Lang,
    Mr. Scales took a long time to recognize the obvious. Over forty years ago when I was a Captain, it was said that the Marine Corps was run by Captains and Staff Sargeants. Certainly no senior officer can be surprised that the point of the spear has broken once again.

  9. Matthew says:

    Col. Lang: Clearly, somebody ultimately will be responsbile. Maybe you: because you criticized the handling of the war too early! Weren’t members of the Abraham Lincoln Brigade, who fought in the Spanish Civil War, still shunned post 1945 for being pre-maturely anti-fascist?

  10. Cloned Poster says:

    No new helicopters coming online soon also:
    The U.S. Army has lost 130 helicopters in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, about a third to shoot-downs, its aviation director said Friday. He complained that industry is not replacing them fast enough.
    “While the military may be on a war footing, our nation’s industry is not on a war footing,” said Brig. Gen. Stephen Mundt.
    He said it takes 24 months to get replacement aircraft built and delivered and that replacements for the early losses are just now arriving.
    “The U.S. is not at war, the military is at war,” he told a group of Defense Department reporters, also complaining about the timing of how money flows from the government to pay for the purchases. “Industry, you have got to get to the point of where you’re producing … faster.”
    Mundt did not have a further breakdown of the losses of aircraft except to say that in addition to shoot-downs, helicopters fall prey to dirt, dust and the rough terrain and conditions in Iraq and Afghanistan.

  11. arbogast says:

    The people responsible for bringing the United States to its knees should be punished.
    Shouldn’t they?

  12. John Howley says:

    Remember that Scales and Rumsfeld and all the rest expected “success” — not the quagmire we seem to have fallen into.
    As I understand it, the general rule is that the patience of the American people with any major war lasts about three years. At which point, public support collapses (unless the effort is clearly at the point of victory as in Dec ’44.)
    This time limit seems to work for the Civil War, WWII and Vietnam (from escalation in summer of ’65 to early ’68 when LBJ quit).
    It also works for the current disaster as public support tanked in early 2006.
    Right or wrong policy, wise or stupid leader, it’s finish up in three years or get out.
    Now the only question is how to get out but make sure the crap sticks to the other guy.

  13. Ryan says:

    Thanks for posting that book review done by Scales. I hadn’t seen that one and I can now say I have no respect for Scales period. WWII was a well though out war for the most part, particulary the Pacific Theater when the counter offensive began. OIF has been a charlie foxtrot from the get go. Bush and the neocons remind me of Alcibiades.
    Cobra II, like Fiasco are superb books.

  14. Will says:

    I still go back to the the Weinberger/Powell Doctrine . Never again. No more Vietnams. That was supposed to be the “Lessons Learned.”
    All the bullcrap about overwhelming force, exit strategy, broad coalitions.
    And Powell himself betrayed the doctrine and gave that infamous U.N. speech for “Sonny.”
    All of it as Webb says “Predicted and Predictable.” So what will be the new lessons learned from this one. Powell Doctrine, Deja Vu again.
    Or don’t do ZioCon Lobby bidding. No that lesson has not been learned.
    Iran=Irak Redux

  15. Dick L. says:

    Having served in Vietnam, and then stateside in the early 70’s, I can attest to the fact that captains and senior noncoms were green and in a learning mode, for the most part. But that didn’t detract from our aggressive pursuit of what we had to do. It was more the mission itself that subverted our sense of purpose, and the support thereof by the American citizenry. Argue all you want of the detractions a long and unpopular war has on a volunteer army. But in the final analysis, when the general populace is forced (i.e. drafted) to participate, then the electorate ultimately decides. Bush and Company would never tolerate the re-institution of the draft: they will decimate our armed forces before that happens.
    Aside note: your linked book review by MG Scales is one of the most ludicrous and irresponsible analogies I have heard yet by a supporter of this Administration.

  16. knut royce says:

    Geez, Col. Lang. I note from the picture that Maj. Gen. Scales does not wear glasses. Maybe that’s why in his book critique last year he couldn’t distinguish apples from pears. What in heavens name are the similarities between WW2 and Iraq, other than the shedding of blood?

  17. Clifford Kiracofe says:

    On wonders how he obtained command of the US Army War College.
    From the two pieces posted it appears he doesn’t bother keeping up to date with some of the thought provoking products of the Strategic Studies Institute at the War College such as:
    Antulio Echevarria II, “Fourth-Generation War and Other Myths” (November 2005)
    Hendrickson and Tucker, “Revisions in Need of Revising: What Went Wrong in the Iraq War” (December 2005)
    Terrill and Crane, “Precedents, Variables and Options in Planning US Military Disengagement Strategy from Iraq” (October 2005).
    Dan Reiter, “Preventive War and Its Alternatives: The Lessons of History” (April 2006)
    Scales goes into my Alcibiades file…

  18. paraporker says:

    I’d give an “OooAhhh”, but I want to cry and be younger. This is a tragedy.

  19. anna missed says:

    (I don’t watch Fox News, so) He sounded pretty reasonable and on the point, until I read the WaTimes piece. Man, that guy gets the award for the most complete about face yet. If anybody should have warned about the dead end scenario killing his lovely little war, it should have been him! This never occurred to him? Talk about that headlight beam at the end of the tunnel!

  20. arbogast says:

    Look, what has happened is that the United States has been hijacked by a plutocracy.
    A plutocracy who wish to install plutocracy across the planet: China, Saudi Arabia, France (the Sarkrazy candidacy), Britain (Blair), etc. etc.
    Think the French Revolution with a different outcome.
    Think George Bush looking out the window of Air Force One at New Orleans and thinking, “Let them eat cake.”

  21. Canuck says:

    I saw no mention of growing privatization of the services. Service men and women have families to feed and there has to be resentment that the US instead of finding a solution to servicemen and women leaving in droves, turned to outsourcing what was the exclusive province of the military. Quote from the last link, “No wonder so many former military personnel are signing up with a private employer instead of re-enlisting.”
    The situation at Walter Reed was reflective of the desperate state servicemen and women are in the military.
    The damage that has been done to the military is not repairable.

  22. michael savoca says:

    If our armed forces are “near the breaking point” they may not have long to hold out. Contained within the recent legislation that appropriates over 90 billion dollars for Iraq and Afghanistan and sets a date to begin troop withdrawal, there is nestled deep within, a requirement that the Iraq Government approve a hydrocarbon law that grants several American and British Oil companies 4/5th rights to all the oil and grants the Iraqi people 1/5th. This has been hidden from the American people. A hydrocarbon law pending before the Iraqi government allocates the oil revenue by this formula and is justified as the necessary to defray the cost to the oil companies for exploration and building oil infrastructure. This argument for the invasion as “blood for oil” is set forth in an essay by Richard Behan in an article published at the Common Dreams web site.
    If Mr. Behan’s allegations are correct then President Bush will NOT veto the legislation despite the threats. (The senate version only suggests a withdrawal date) The oil is the key and informs us about exactly what the president means when he says “win”, And when he says, “we will stand down when they stand up” and when he says, “when the Iraqi government is able to defend itself” . Against whom you might ask? Why that’s simple. Defend against any party who would gain control of Iraq and rip up the oil agreement. The several huge permanent military bases and the 100 plus acre US embassy is there to prop up the oil “agreement”
    Richard Behan is a natural resource policy analyst, and author, and was a consultant to the BLM, the Forest service, and served as the Dean of the school of forestry at Northern Arizona U., and elsewhere as an educator.

  23. Rummy Insider Admits Ground Force is Broken

    By way of Sic Semper Tyrannis 2007, we learn that another voice has joined the chorus that cries the warning “unsustainable!” when talking about Chimpy’s Great Patriotic War on Iraq.
    SST had this to say about the latest purveyor of the obvious:
    MG R

  24. JollyRoger says:

    And yet, Pace and Petreaus continue to insist that what they’re doing is working, and everything’s going to be OK.
    The march of reality has just about caught up to them. I wonder how they, as honorable officers, can continue to repeat the bullshit handed to them via the offices of Chimpy.

  25. semper fubar says:

    Breaking the army is a feature, not a bug, of this illegal invasion and occupation.
    Pretty soon, the military industrial complex will assert that we have “no choice” but to complete the privatization of the whole she-bang.
    Of course, it may cost the taxpayers a just little bit more, eh?, to have Blackwater and the like defending our sacred freedom — but there’s so, so much more money to be made, and so, so little of that dangnabbed inconvenient accountability to the taxpayer to be feared.
    It’s the perfect plan.

  26. ali says:

    In the second piece he accurately lists the largely forgotten terrible catalog of failures that the US experienced in WWII before the its conclusion. The Italian campaign alone contains examples of spectacularly awful American generalship that makes the current mediocre crop shine in comparison.
    The vainglorious on the Road to Rome springs to mind.
    The lesson to take Americas brief, bloody involvement in that war is not however that catastrophic bungling is the normal friction of warfare. The US mobilized with remarkable speed in WWII. It’s inexperienced, untested and very reluctant conscript army learnt from hard lessons at an incredible pace. It rapidly excelled its seasoned Western allies. This is the true quality of American greatness; not innate excellence but quick study and startling innovation under pressure. It has been nowhere to be seen in this war.
    In Iraq the US has had a small, well motivated, extremely professional army conducting what should have been a comparatively simple constabulary operation. Broadly it can be criticized for trying to fight a big kinetic war and a refusal to accept that the reality on the ground demanded more subtlety. It has suffered most from being under the command of a dogmatically single-minded and breathtakingly incompetent executive branch. The mission it was given had muddled objectives and was fatally flawed in its political conception. The contrast with the agile minds of FDR, Ike and Marshall could not be more stark.

  27. Will says:

    Iranians seem determined to give Dumbya his Olmeret-Peretz moment.
    They should have a chat with Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah.
    “Fearing abduction by the Iranians, U.S. troops moved to go anyway, and fighting broke out. Army officials say the Iranian troops fired first with small arms and rocket-propelled grenades, and that U.S. troops fell further back into Iraqi territory, while four Iraqi army soldiers, one interpreter and one Iraqi border guard remained in the hands of the Iranians. ”
    Time Magazine

  28. Andy Mink says:

    Colonel Lang,
    Scales’s book review contains this stunning misconstruction: “Hitler never came to hate the United States with the mindless imbecility of radical Islamists nor was his anti-Semitic ranting any more threatening than those spouted by the likes of Zawahiri, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi and Ahmedinejad.”
    Being German, having studied ‘our’ history and having met many German-Jewish refugees in the U.S., I don’t quite know where to begin. If you want to understand Hitler (and Islamists), the whole concept of “hating with mindless imbecility” is absolutely useless. Hitler’s hate of the U.S. came out of his deep conviction that the “international financial Jewish oligarchy” (or however the Fuehrer phrased it) ran the place and after taking over Eurasia, the U.S. would have been the next target. Roosevelt was well aware of that. And Scales is pushing under the carpet that Hitler didn’t stop at “anti-Semitic ranting.” Combined with racial laws and state run pogroms, it was “threatening” enough for more than half of Germany’s heartrendingly patriotic Jews to flee the country as long as they could. We all know what happened to the rest of them and some 6 million others.
    I’ve hardly ever read anything as revolting and cynical. This whole rhethoric of Ahmadinedjad=Hitler, no more “Munichs”, etc, is such a fraudulent scam…
    Andy Mink

  29. meletius says:

    I wonder if part of the Iraq occupation “fall-out” will be the withering of the AVF and the rise of a christianist, “conservative” private milita for hire and use in the US by the highest bidder.
    A “for-profit” conservative Brownshirt SA, perhaps.
    America is de-evolving as a result of “conservative” governing.
    Is it too late to reverse the looming catastrophe and destruction of the constitution? No politician seems to mention or acknowledge any of the things we observe here.

  30. charlottemom says:

    I love it! He was wholly for the war until and up to the time whem he was against it. What’s missing — the confessional. The how, whats, whens of the conversion. These policy turncoats should be shunned when they now criticize their war mess as objective, non-involved sideliners. It’s not just disingenuous but it’s bad for the soul.

  31. michael savoca says:

    And another insider recants … an excellent article in NYT where Matthew Dowd sees the light, however late in the day it is.
    Ex-Aide Details a Loss of Faith in the President By JIM RUTENBERG
    (the entire article is worth reading here are snips from a couple of paragraphs)
    AUSTIN, Tex., March 29 — In 1999, Matthew Dowd became a symbol of George W. Bush’s early success at positioning himself as a Republican with Democratic appeal. (snip) Mr. Dowd was impressed by the pledge of Mr. Bush, then governor of Texas, to bring a spirit of cooperation to Washington. He switched parties, joined Mr. Bush’s political brain trust and dedicated the next six years to getting him to the Oval Office and keeping him there. In 2004, he was appointed the president’s chief campaign strategist. Looking back, Mr. Dowd now says his faith in Mr. Bush was misplaced. In a wide-ranging interview here, Mr. Dowd called for a withdrawal from Iraq and expressed his disappointment in Mr. Bush’s leadership. He criticized the president as failing to call the nation to a shared sense of sacrifice at a time of war, failing to reach across the political divide to build consensus and ignoring the will of the people on Iraq…(snip) Mr. Bush still approached governing with a “my way or the highway” mentality reinforced by a shrinking circle of trusted aides.(snip) “I think he’s become more, in my view, secluded and bubbled in.” (snip) his disappointment in Mr. Bush’s presidency is so great that he feels a sense of duty to go public given his role in helping Mr. Bush gain and keep power. (snip) Mr. Dowd, a crucial part of a team that cast Senator John Kerry as a flip-flopper who could not be trusted with national security during wartime…(snip) “Kerry Was Right,” (said Dowd) arguing that” Mr. Kerry, (snip)…, was correct in calling last year for a withdrawal from Iraq”.

  32. searp says:

    I was in Taji for a spell early this year. Privates, a staff sergeant and a major all volumteered to me that they were getting out. Couldn’t take the optempo anymore.
    I work with young captains who have returned to civilian life. One time I asked them why there were so many junior officers that had left the service. I was puzzled because I never saw that in the Navy. The answer was “because the Army treats us like crap”.
    I relate these anecdotes only because I considered them at the time to be a very bad sign.

  33. Sgt.York says:

    Why do we need Captains? A Lieutenant is perfectly capable of ordering enlisted men to drive around in a Hummv looking for the enemy (that they can’t identify) until they hit an IED.

  34. bcb says:

    Col. Lange
    I must disagree with your prescription for MG Scales. Namely, your suggestion that “[h]e should go and hide somewhere and not walk abroad among the living.”
    As an opponent of this war from its inception, I believe that the more ex-supporters who now admit they’ve found religion, the quicker we will remove ourselves from this debacle. I welcome each and everyone of them in coming forward, and acknowledging what many of us feared from the get-go.
    In chess, it’s said that “the threat is often stronger than it’s execution.” I think the same should have been applied to the use of our military in this instance.
    PS — How about Sen McCain taking a leisurely stroll through Baghdad this weekend to prove his point about the improved situation on the ground while being accompanied by 100 heavily-armed soldiers, three Blackhawks and two Apache gunships.

  35. Cold War Zoomie says:

    I’m tired of these knuckleheads telling me this is “more important than WWII!” If that’s true, why aren’t they on TV screaming bloody murder every single day saying we need to go on a real war footing?? Start the draft. Raise taxes. Double the production of the gear we need. Sell war bonds.
    As long as they are unwilling to do that, then they are LYING.

  36. Peter Principle says:

    Ali: “This is the true quality of American greatness; not innate excellence but quick study and startling innovation under pressure. It has been nowhere to be seen in this war.”
    Neil Sheehan talked about this in his book about Vietnam and the quasi-mythical Col. Paul Vann.
    The big difference between World War II and Vietnam, Sheehan wrote, was that in World War II America’s political and military leaders knew they were taking on two of the toughtest military machines in the world. They’d already seen the Werhmacht roll over Poland, France, most of European Russia, etc. And they’d seen the Japanese capture an entire British army in Singapore and come within an ace of knocking the U.S. Navy out of the Pacific in the opening battle of the war.
    In other words, they were deathly afraid that they might lose:
    “Eisenhower and Patton and their United States Army of 1943 had been small men in a world of big men. Their personal survival, the survival of their Army, and the survival of their nation had been at stake.”
    Fear is a powerful motivator. It can push even large bureaucratic organizations into adapting and innovating — even when they don’t want to, which is always and forever.
    But by the time the Gulf of Tonkin incident rolled around, the hubris of success and power had convinced the civilians and the generals alike that they had nothing to fear from a bunch of “raggedy-ass” guerrillas and a third-rate, Third Word army. If necessary, they would simply be obliterated with overwhelming firepower.
    Ten years later . . .
    One can draw an analogy to the first Gulf War and this one. In 1991, the American military didn’t really know for sure how well it had rebuilt the Army that was broken in Vietnam. It didn’t know for sure that the high-tech gizzmos paid for with Reagan’s defense spending binge would work as advertised. It DID know that Iraq had fought a ten year near-total war against Iran and emerged standing, if not exactly triumphant. And it also knew from Reagan’s failed intervention in Lebanon how many things can go wrong in the Middle East.
    They, too, were afraid they might fail.
    But of course they didn’t — and the scale of the victory exceeded all pre-war expectations. But it appears that victory conditioned how the Bush Adminstration and the Rumsfeld Pentagon approached the second Gulf War — with cocky arrogance and blind faith in their ability to cope with the unexpected. They could have, should have, learned something from Mogadishu. But they didn’t.
    And so the historical wheel turns around again . . .

  37. Will says:

    The constituency that counts.
    Even tho the Bush II admin has treated the troops and vets like shxt, they had continued to rally around the Repubs and POTUS. Now a recent poll says the military identifies with the Dems- a flip flop.
    You began to see a crack in that as Tidewater VA, the home of the Fleet around Norfolk, went for Webb. Here in NC, around Camp LeJeune and Cherry Point Air Station, you can see the fault line. Rep. Walter E. Jones, Jr. R-NC has always bucked the administration, supported the vets, voted with the Dems on Irak withdrawl, introduced a bill not to bomb Iran. A local former marine Repub is trying to undermine him in the Republican party.
    Jones, Jr. is intriguing. His dad was a longtime Dem congressman.
    So far the local paper, which is so rabid it runs the Ann Coulter column, has not attacked him.

  38. Clifford Kiracofe says:

    No convert, but Neocon groupie Francis Fukuyama now says it wasn’t me via Daily Star (Beirut)this week:
    Like Paul Wolofowitz, foreign policy guru Fukuyama was a student of Leo Strauss protege Allen Bloom. Blooom’s very kinky world in Paris include his mentor there Alexandre Kojeve, a twisted Russian emigre peddling bizarro formulations of Hegel, Nietsche and the like. Kojeve’s postmodern circle included Foucault, Bataille and other Parisian gutter philosophers.
    As Fukuyama tells his Middle Eastern readers via the Daily Star, “Following Alexandre Kojeve, the Russian-French philosopher who inspired my original argument…”
    To decode this, see Professor Shadia Drury’s, Alender Kojeve. The Roots of Postmodern Politics (New York: St. Martins, 1994). She treats Fukuyama extensively.
    Kojeve was an admirer of Stalin, Drury says, and Kojeve “placed special emphasis on terror as a necessary component of revolution….Stalin understood the need for terror and did not shrink from crimes and atrocities — whatever their magnitude. This was integral to his greatness in Kojeve’s eyes.” (Drury, pp. 36-37).
    Fukuyama’s web page is:
    His latest efforts include authoriship of a paper on US national strategy for the “Princeton Project”, presumably for the next Administration.

  39. James Pratt says:

    How could any senior Sgt, Loot or Capt. with any regard for the truth listen to a speech at numerous reup ceremonies commending the troops for showing their ‘belief in the mission’after being told before they signed the paper to remember the fine print they signed years ago, they are the CIC’s for the duration and they can be payed to make it look voluntary or be stop-lossed anyway? Then too, the Army trusts a married officer more but doesn’t often operate to keep marriages together for the non-REMFs.

  40. Charles says:

    I just finished Thomas Ricks’ Fiasco. I’ve read hundreds of these books since my earliest days as an armchair cold warrior and intelligence junky harking back to the assassination of Stepan Bandura and the riddle of Yuri Nosenko. Never been a a soldier, not American. I understand now that each victory in war comes after a long series of snafus, accidents, incompetence, near misses and numerous by the Grace of Gods – and the dedicated service of brave humans of whatever side.
    Never mind castigating converts and counseling them not to show their faces. There’s long list of active participants who in a just society would be stood up against a wall and shot for their myriad crimes, malfeasances and sheer hubristic incompetence – Bush, Cheyney, Wolfowitz, Rumsfeld, Tenet, Generals Meyers and Sanchez. Then your Congress. Trial by Ordeal, Paine dure et forte for the bunch. And I’m one of those pro-abortion anti-death penalty types.
    If I was a Godly man, I’d be praying for General Petraeus, but never mind. If he can turn it around, and he sure deserves the 6 – 9 months Pat posited earlier, well Hallelujah, praise the Lord and pass the ammunition. But “win” or lose, where the hell will the U.S. be in 5 years, with its broken, “transformed” army, and $340bn of fancy new fighters tricked out as precision munitions platforms? Blow up all the Dora Farms you want, level a hundred Fallujahs but if they ain’t home, BFD, they’ll be back when you ain’t.
    How can so great a country pursue and swallow such umitigated bullshit and no-one but Lindy Englund, Janice Karpinsky and a few of the over-stressed ranks carry the can? I know, I know, and I keep saying it, all too human, twas ever thus. But for heaven’s sake, couldn’t there be a few show trials for the real powerful cretins, a few Enronesque examples of government, maybe tune up the rest a little?
    And most of the field of snake-bellied wind sniffers, er, presidential aspirants, well, good luck there too. John McCain out for a stroll through Baghdad. What the hell IS in the air or the water down there in Washington? Can it really just be pork, K street, money and The Lobby? Capital oughtta be moved to New Orleans until the Rapture. I really do fear for your republic. If only I could be a little more dispassionate about it!

  41. Yours Truly says:

    Col., sir : From what I understand ’bout the American psyche’s that most people don’t really remember what they’ve read or seen on MSM. Guess Scales can go publish some other book of his & reap some more from sales.

  42. Oscar Chavez says:

    It’s interesting to read these comments more than two years later, when the facts have proven Petraeus right and all these predictions went nowhere.
    It is funny also to see that calling the president “Chimpy” seemed perfectly fine. Would it be OK now? Of course it wouldn’t, as it wasn’t OK in 2007.
    Our current president may soon send additional troops to Afghanistan. If that happens, I’d like to see your comments on that.

  43. Patrick Lang says:

    I do not think I called anyone “Chimpy.”
    What is it that you think Petraaeus was right about and of what relevence is that to the post?
    Is it that you think Petraeus invented COIN warfare? pl

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