Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Bush/Cheney/Rumsfeld in Iraq - "A Banana Republic Coup D'Etat" (Thomas Ricks via Belgravia Dispatch)

I haven't yet read the new book by Thomas Ricks, Fiasco: The American Military Adventure in Iraq. But Ricks, who is the senior Pentagon correspondent for the Washington Post, has a solid record of informed and insightful analysis. And the reviews of the book that I have read so far suggest that it may be one of the more important and valuable analyses of how and why the 2003 Iraq war (which I believe was both necessary and justified) and its aftermath (which it was always clear would be crucial) were planned and conducted with such spectacular and irresponsible incompetence. (This would put Fiasco in distinguished company with Trudy Rubin's Willful Blindness, Larry Diamond's Squandered Victory, George Packer's The Assassin's Gate, Gordon & Trainor's Cobra II, Peter Galbraith's The End of Iraq, etc.--and I mention only books by people who have genuinely wanted the post-Saddam reconstruction of Iraq to succeed.)

Greg Djerejian (in his Belgravia Dispatch blog) offers one striking tidbit from Michiko Kakutani's New York Times review of Fiasco.

--Jeff Weintraub
Gregory Djerejian (Belgravia Dispatch)
July 24, 2006
A Banana Republic Coup D'Etat

Ricks via Kakutani:
Mr. Ricks argues that the invasion of Iraq “was based on perhaps the worst war plan in American history,” an incomplete plan that “confused removing Iraq’s regime with the far more difficult task of changing the entire country.” The result of going in with too few troops and no larger strategic plan, he says, was “that the U.S. effort resembled a banana republic coup d’état more than a full-scale war plan that reflected the ambition of a great power to alter the politics of a crucial region of the world.”
Query: How soon before Ricks gets tarred as a defeatist, appeasing America-hater by dim blogospheric and talk-radio blow-hards?

Posted by Gregory at July 25, 2006 02:28 AM