POOR FADED CELEBRITY BARRY O.
ALREADY HAILED BY AMERICANS AS THE WORST PRESIDENT SINCE WWII, HE NOW FACES STINGING REBUKES -- LIKE BEING CALLED THE 'CAN'T DO' PRESIDENT.
THESE REPORTERS SPENT THE MORNING SURVEYING CHILDREN AT LOCAL PARKS.
5% HAD NEVER HEARD OF BARACK OBAMA.
ANOTHER 7% CONFUSED HIM WITH OSAMA BIN LADEN.
THAT LEFT 88%.
OF THOSE, THE VAST MAJORITY RANKED HIM "A NO GOOD DOODY BUTT" AND FELT THAT ALTHOUGH "HE THINKS HE'S HOT SNOT ON A SILVER PLATTER, HE'S REALLY COLD BUGGERS ON A PAPER PLATE."
A WHOPPING 42% VOICED THE BELIEF THAT, DESPITE HAVING HIS OWN PERSONAL PHYSICIAN ON CALL AT ALL HOURS, BARRY O HAD NEVER HAD A COOTIE SHOT.
Don't just love the pig boys? No, I don't either.
Piggie Walter Hecht (Spectrum) wants you to know the problem in Iraq is Bully Boy Bush. He has no knowledge to share of the years 2010 to 2014 -- Nouri's second term. But he wants you to believe he knows what he's talking about. He refers to "the Pottery Barn rule" which makes him look like a bigger dunce since Pottery Barn never has had a you-break-it-you-bought-it policy. Before he was US Senator Al Franken, Al had done the research and established there was no you-break-it-you-bought-it policy at Pottery Barn.
Equally true, Hecht, Iraq isn't up for sale to foreigners. The gall, the audacity to suggest that foreigners can and should "buy" Iraq? I'm sorry, you modern day Columbuses, you didn't discover a brave, new land. Like the Americas, Iraq was occupied. In fact, Iraq is usually considered to be the birth place of civilization.
Pig boy Hecht wants you to know he understands Iraq.
He understands because he read a book by bwana L. Paul Bremer and a book by former US State Dept employee Peter Van Buren.
Pig boys never read, for example, Deborah Amos' Eclipse of the Sunnis: Power, Exile and Upheaval in the Middle East.
What is about these pig boys -- and toss in the ridiculous Thomas E. Ricks -- that they don't think they need to read women?
Deborah Amos is a journalist. She wasn't working for the government. She was in Iraq to report.
I'm failing to understand how Bremer's book -- which I found very self-serving (more was to be learned from the public testimony in England's Iraq Inquiry than from Bremer's book). Peter Van Buren wrote an interesting book worthy of praise but he's not really someone who mingled with the Iraqis, is he?
While the boys built monuments to their own egos (excessive praise and colossal wailing are two sides of the same grand ego), Deborah told the story of how the Iraq War effected Iraqis.
Her book topped the community's list for 2010 in books with Martha and Shirley observing, "Amos' book is moving throughout but especially when she's charting what refugee status means for a number of Iraqi women -- late nights in clubs attempting to turn a trick in order to support their families. Amos is covering the realities of the Iraq War that so few have."
Deborah wrote a great book. She's not the only woman who's done that with the topic of Iraq. At Third, we did a series on the 10 most important books of the last ten years and "Manal M. Omar's Barefoot in Baghdad" was one of our selections:
One of the few books addressing the effects of the war on the ground -- as opposed to War Porn glorifying the US military 'kills' -- is Manal M. Omar's Barefoot in Baghdad: A Story of Identity -- My Own and What it Means to be a Woman in Chaos which charts her journey to Iraq, as an American (and an Arab), to help the women of Iraq and what she ends up learning from and of Iraqi women. Omar was with the US Institute of Peace and in Baghdad from 2003 to 2005.
Unlike Thomas E. Ricks or George Packer, we weren't afraid to note women in our list: "Carrie Fisher's Wishful Drinking," "Peter Laufer's Mission Rejected," "Chris Hedges'Death of the Liberal Class," "Shirley MacLaine's I'm Over All That," "CCR's Articles of Impeachment Against Bush," "Manal M. Omar's Barefoot in Baghdad," "Susan Faludi's The Terror Dream," "Joyce Murdoch and Deb Price's Courting Justice," "Anthony Arnove's Iraq: The Logic Of Withdrawal" and "Tori's Piece by Piece." Laufer and Arnove made the list with Iraq as a topic and I'd also argue that Susan Faludi's penetrating book The Terror Dream has a lot to do with Iraq (and Afghanistan).
It takes a special ignorance blended with arrogance to believe books by people like Bremer -- where Iraqis are, at best, minor supporting character and, at worst, extras -- are going to provide you knowledge of Iraq and its people. And you can see it in this sentence Hecht typed, "Iraq was not and is not ready for democracy and free market capitalism; Iraq may never be ready."
Who are you to say whether or not Iraq is "ready for democracy"? That's really up to Iraqis. As for "free market capitalism," they can be "ready" or not but that will be there decision. And "free market capitalism" is not the end all be all to solve every problem. They may choose another economic model, they may revert more strongly to the model they had prior to 2003. That's their decision. And when it's treated as though these two things are 'baby steps' to be taken by Iraq, you really insult and infantalize a people and a culture that outdates your own so you might want to pull your nose out of the air.
As for what's happening in Iraq now, Eli Lake (Daily Beast) reports voices were warning the administration -- for years and years:
At the time, senior Obama administration officials went out of their way to proclaim just how impossible-to-predict the collapse of Mosul was. But interviews with a dozen U.S. and Iraqi intelligence officials, diplomats, and policy makers reveal a very different story. A catastrophe like the fall of Mosul wasn’t just predictable, these officials say. They repeatedly warned the Obama administration that something like this was going to happen. With seemingly no good choices to make in Iraq, the White House wasn’t able to listen.
“It’s simply not true that nobody saw a disaster like the fall of Mosul coming,” Ali Khedery, who served as a senior adviser at the U.S. embassy in Baghdad, told The Daily Beast. “I can’t speak for anyone else, but I literally predicted this in verbal warnings and in writing in 2010 that Iraq would fall apart.”
Ali Khedery had a very important column last week. Mike noted it in "Reading assignment for Joel Wing and other nut jobs," Rebecca noted it in "and f**k you, tom hayden," Kat in "Joe Biden, another politician of broken promises," Marcia in "Barack's betrayal of Iraq," Ann with "Barack backed Nouri, remember that" and Trina in "The idiot Chris Hill."
The column is "Why we stuck with Maliki -- and lost Iraq" (Washington Post) and at Third we noted it in "Truest statement of the week" and "Truest statement of the week II."
In a meeting in Baghdad with a Petraeus-hosted delegation of Council on Foreign Relations members shortly after the 2010 elections, Maliki insisted that the vote had been rigged by the United States, Britain, the United Nations and Saudi Arabia. As we shuffled out of the prime minister’s suite, one stunned executive, the father of an American Marine, turned to me and asked, “American troops are dying to keep that son of a b---- in power?”
[. . .]
On Sept. 1, 2010, Vice President Biden was in Baghdad for the change-of-command ceremony that would see the departure of Gen. Ray Odierno and the arrival of Gen. Lloyd Austin as commander of U.S. forces. That night, at a dinner at the ambassador’s residence that included Biden, his staff, the generals and senior embassy officials, I made a brief but impassioned argument against Maliki and for the need to respect the constitutional process. But the vice president said Maliki was the only option. Indeed, the following month he would tell top U.S. officials, “I’ll bet you my vice presidency Maliki will extend the SOFA,” referring to the status-of-forces agreement that would allow U.S. troops to remain in Iraq past 2011.
RECOMMENDED: "Iraq snapshot"
- Truest statement of the week
- Truest statement of the week II
- A note to our readers
- Editorial: Yeah, Barack lied again (and again)
- TV: Overt Affairs
- The summer's self-help book
- The deal too good to be true
- The Diaries of Tom Hayden
- Where is stupid Sven?
- This edition's playlist
- The Summer Read Edition