Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Vanity-Induced Bonfires

Publius at Legal Fiction says:
I just want to draw everyone's attention to these passages in today's Post, which are just mind-boggling.
In going for more troops, Bush is picking an option that seems to have little favor beyond the White House and a handful of hawks on Capitol Hill and in think tanks who have been promoting the idea almost since the time of the invasion.

[. . .]

Although the president was publicly polite, few of the key Baker-Hamilton recommendations appealed to the administration, which intensified its own deliberations over a new "way forward" in Iraq. How to look distinctive from the study group became a recurring theme.

As described by participants in the administration review, some staff members on the National Security Council became enamored of the idea of sending more troops to Iraq in part because it was not a key feature of Baker-Hamilton.
Two things. First, Bush is choosing an option that has zero support from anyone except those who have consistently been wrong about pretty much everything relating to Iraq. Military officials, Middle East experts, and foreign officials are all opposed because they don't think it will work. And that makes sense given that the underlying problem today in 2007 is not so much a lack of security, but a sectarian civil war that is ultimately a political problem.

Second, and more inexcusably, if the NSC official is correct, Bush is picking this option out of vanity and spite simply because the Baker Group didn't offer it.

All in all, it sounds like a promising strategy. After all, if history has taught us nothing else, it's that military strategies with no empirical basis adopted out of pride and vanity are usually phenomenally successful.

2 Comments:

Blogger liberal journal man said...

You know, Bill. You keep scoffing, but once this surge cures all that ills Iraq, we'll see who's right!

1:08 AM  
Blogger Bill said...

You must be right, LJM. Imagine doubting Commander Codpiece. What was I thinking. I mean, when has he ever failed before...?

8:20 PM  

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