Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Al Maliki, Grotesque Fiction & Cruel Affront

War on the cheap! No down payment! Free undercoating!
I have come to understand that I have an emotional clock that is tied to the ebb and flow of the Mess in Mesopotamia, which I suppose makes me a big blubbery wuss. But a pretty prescient guy, nonetheless.

Most days, my clock ticks fairly softly as I absorb, process and blog on the news from Iraq. Some days my clock is inaudible. That's usually when I am so filled up with lying government officials, suicide bombed body parts and orphaned children that I have to avert my gaze and be real low key.

And then there was Monday, when I already was on high alert and in high dudgeon on the fourth anniversary of the Used Car Salesman in Chief's "Mission Accomplished" speech. That's when CNN moved this story:
BAGHDADIraq’s prime minister has created an entity within his government that U.S. and Iraqi military officials say is being used as a smokescreen to hide an extreme Shiite agenda that is worsening the country’s sectarian divide.

The "Office of the Commander in Chief" has the power to overrule other government ministries, according to U.S. military and intelligence sources.

Those sources say the 24-member office is abusing its power, increasingly overriding decisions made by the Iraqi Ministries of Defense and Interior and potentially undermining the entire U.S. effort in Iraq.

"The Office," as it is known in Baghdad, was set up about four months ago with the knowledge of American forces in Iraq. Its goal is ostensibly to advise Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki — the nation’s new commander in chief — on military matters.

According to a U.S. intelligence source, "The Office" is "ensuring the emplacement of commanders it favors and can control, regardless of what the ministries want."
To say that the gear works in my clock began spinning furiously (think of the visuals from a bad horror flick) is an understatement.

I was preparing to lay my weary head down to sleep last night when the Used Car Salesman in Chief vetoed the Democratic war spending-with-deadlines bill. No surprise. No surrender. And the lamest of reasons: "Setting a deadline for withdrawal is setting a date for failure, and that would be irresponsible."

A "You Can't Veto the Truth" ad was supposed to begin running on cable news networks after the veto. It illustrates in brief but stark relief the bloody lemon of the war that the American people have been sold.

As the Philadelphia Daily News put it in an editorial:
"You've run out of chances, Mr. President.
"In the Army, there is a saying: Lead, follow, or get out of the way. Your leadership has failed. You refuse to follow what the American people asked for in the 2006 elections. Now, Mr. Bush, get out of the way, and let the Congress bring a responsible winding-down of this war."
* * * * *
There is a lot of faux outrage in the blogosphere over the state of the war and the state of the union, too much of it predictable knee-jerk bloviating.

But I awoke this morning thinking about "The Office," and the gear works in my clock again were aspin.

This is where we are, folks:
Overlayed with the news that Al Maliki is running a Stalinesque ethnic cleansing operation out of his own office and the Used Car Salesman's veto, the notion being floated by the White House that the prime minister can get his house in order if only given another six months is a grotesque fiction.

And a cruel affront to every man and woman wearing an American uniform in Iraq and Afghanistan and the many thousands who have come home in pine boxes or with body parts missing.


Charles Amico said...

Shaun, it has also come to light that for 2 Months the Iraqi Government is going on "vacation'. This is to correctly time the effort of the surge, I presume. Unfortunately, I am afraid we must wait 20 months to replace our own Commanderless Chief. He is going to ride these cards he is holding all the way to hell.

Jeb Koogler said...


Interesting post here. Now that Maliki has made extremely clear his intention to establish permanent Shiite rule, the goals of the surge are increasingly unclear. Wow, what a mess...