Call Me Shocked! Shocked!


SURGE !!!!

Reader Sglover quite legitimately notes that the Warlord is immune to objective reality and institutional restraints. Belief is enough. Another Warlord in history sacked his better generals when confronted with reality in favor of ideologically compatible fanatics; belief in victory the only qualification.

We still believe that this all hollow show. The audiences are Congress, the American people, the Iraqis and Iranians (the latter two not the least bit falling for it). Interestingly, neither are the American people, only Congress. (Again).

The key issue is to settle the Who Lost Iraq? question here. Obviously the Warlord and Cheney want to pin it on Congress to de-legitimize it as an independent branch and smear Democrats. But DoD also wants to recover from the Feith/Rummy/Wolfie cf and achieve enough to blame State overall and the Embassy for failing to deliver the political side.

We still believe the troops come home starting Spring and in larger numbers by Fall. If the surge stays in place past the breaking date of circa April, then we have passed into the larger realm of the military too infected with Fanaticism and Will over material reality. And Sglover, we will send you a free Stiftung mug for helping us ponder different outcomes.

We have heard (second hand, but a trusted source) that some upon whose collars Heaven shines (not Pace’s 4, but . . .) that does not appear to be the case. We obviously can’t name them here. Even for some of those with operational command responsibilities in the Area of Operations and with direct familiarity with the tactical and operational situation in Iraq.

Yet Sglover’s observations about the Warlord remain true. We look to April as a sign. 


  1. Comment says

    Doc, did Blackwater defeat Department 2800 in last years badass stickball tourney?
    Maybe you can make a flag, decal, and crest for 2800, so as to help flesh out their identity.

  2. Comment says

    Its truly amazing that Patraeus could refer to an unknown group of assassins with the cinema-like conspcious name of Department 2800 and no one bothers to ask him about it and no newspaper even bothers to wonder if it even exists. Here are some questions Patraeus should have been asked:
    1) How far is the “International Zone” from the “Green Zone?”
    2) Do you swear under oath that no one from the administration or the executive branch discussed with you, in any manner, the choice of words – ie whether to use Int. Zone instead of “Green Zone.” Why?
    3) You captured the “deputy commander” of Department 2800 – BTW, congrats (laughs). Describe the chain of commmand of Dept 2800 and tell us why they have never been described before in US gov docs. If it was classified, tell us why and tell us who authorized you to discuss them?
    4) If Department 2800 was made up by you for propaganda reasons, did you chose to say “deputy” so as to imply a command structure, or were you using a the propaganda technique of faux-specifism developed by advertisg firms?
    5) Why not the assistant to the deputy? Also if the Iranians want to set up a Hezbollah-like force, why not just set up a Hezbollah force, since they created Department 3.141592653579 or whoops I mean 2800.
    6) How do these advanced IEDs difer from the basic IEDs, or are you just BSing us with adjectives?
    7) Who wins in softball when Qods plays Quds?
    8) Since the Badr brigades are trained by Iran and Bush has the leader of them over to the WH, should President Bush be investigated for his links to the Mullahs?

  3. Comment says

    That whole paragraph looks like it was jerry rigged in Fed Kagan’s basement after a long night of playing Madden’08 and cursing the Webb amendment.

  4. A Random Quote says

    “”In the past six months we have also targeted Shia militia *extremists*, capturing a number of *senior* leaders and fighters, as well as the *deputy* commander of Lebanese Hezbollah Department 2800, the organization created to support the training, arming, funding, and, in some cases, direction of the militia *extremists* by the Iranian Republican Guard Corps’ Qods Force. These elements have assassinated and kidnapped Iraqi governmental leaders, killed and wounded our soldiers with *advanced* explosive devices provided by Iran, and *indiscriminately* rocketed civilians in the *International* Zone and elsewhere. It is increasingly apparent to both Coalition and Iraqi leaders that Iran, through the use of the Qods Force, seeks to turn the Iraqi Special Groups into a Hezbollah-like force to serve its interests and fight a proxy war against the Iraqi state and coalition forces in Iraq.”
    ~Gen. Patraeus
    (Not under oath)

  5. Comment says

    Scratch that – there is nothing benign about the boyos over at Department 2800 – Nasy’s Boyos is their gang tag, if we heard correctly. It’s just that the more nerdy guys over at Hezbollah’s Department 3.14159265 are more dasterdly precisely because they are so good at math.

  6. Comment says

    They should have asked Patraeus if he is excusing the more dasterdly Department 3.14159265, when he blames the relatively benign Dept 2800 (the do mostly mortagages, Iranian FHA loans, repos in the secondary mkt..)

  7. Comment says

    Hezbollah Dept 2800 will probably set a record for least citation in scholarly papers. You can just imagine the tools who thought up that on – While Bushs allies in the Maliki government obviously support Hez in the hearts – they have probably refrained from contacting the dread 2800 operatives.

  8. Dr Leo Strauss says

    Cato and Comment, haven’t forgotten your questions, along with Hezbollah Deptment 2800 — will revert soonest.

  9. Armchair says

    McLaughlin: On a scale of 1 to 10 – one being a wormhole of nihilistic meaningless and ten being infinite and fecund motherly truth — how would rate the Patraeus proganda phrase ‘Hezbollah Department 2800′ for its usefullness?

    Pat: John, it’s a 1.2 [make hand chops gesture] – You know who, ain’t kiddin’ anybody anymore. Quds force, my …

    Tony: It’s a 9 – even if Iran is not involved in this individual thing – they have coming for the way they treated our lads in the Royal Marines and the unsporting way they retreated from Greece.

    Elanore [screaming] It’s a ZERO, John – Our allies in the Iraqi government are militant Shia alligned with Iran and they all support Hezbollah, so it makes no sense for Hezbollah to try

    Tony: You’re missing the point. After the Battle of Marathon, Darius …

  10. cato90025 says

    I second the query re, the OBL text–how can it not be manipulated–oh the public would readily apprehend any doctoring?

    Parle-Herr DR!

  11. Aldershot says

    “Wouldn’t it be devastatingly ironic if the Warlord and Cheney took the true measure of the American people after all ?”

    Completing the circle brings us back to the notion attributed to Strauss…a nation must be on a constant war footing to be strong. They only want to do what’s best for the self-absorbed little mall rats, don’t ya see?

  12. Armchair says

    How much pot did the guy who made up the little bogus factoid ‘Lebanese Hezbollah Department 2800’ smoke before he decided to insert it into Petraeus pretext-for-Iran-laden presentation?

    Pretty funny how no one in Congress even bothered to inquire as to the nature of this so-called Department 2800. Yes . Doc – Cheney & Co took measure.

  13. Comment says

    We’ll ask – he may have to tone down the part when he has Tweety compares Erin Burnett unfavorably to Betty Grable while simultaneously drooling and spitting over his guest Matalin.

  14. DrLeoStrauss says

    Comment, if your friend could be convinced to submit a video . . . we happen to know one of the senior most people (off the air) at The Daily Show . . . or he could take the Viral YouTube route. Tweety needs a beating.

  15. DrLeoStrauss says

    I hear you both. As we discussed over in STOSZ 1.0 I think (am I the only one feeling nostalgic for the old place?) we began planning the occupation of Japan in early ’42 if not before immediately after Singapore fell.

    In late 2002 when the speculation was reaching fever pitch about WHEN American power would overawe the primitive Muslims, let’s just say the Stiftung was working/talking with people that reported directly to Rummy (no go between) and others in OSD and across the whole regime. And I remember saying to someone intimately familiar with the Occupation of Japan that Wolfowitz could never be so stupid as to do this half assed, could he?

    Because there was not a whiff of real planning in the air — the real planning was the whole 20 years war. Where to strike next to drain the swamp. And everyone in the Building and in the parasite community was equating Iraq to Guadacanal. We remember in 2002 Barnett would scoff about an “Iraq War,” saying did we go to war against the Gilberts? Or the Marianas? And Condi was running around her empty blather. It was as Woodward finally reported with apologies for being a mere courtier “tapping” with his regime “sources”.

    One feels “you just can’t make it up” but there it is. What stuns the most is to walk one of the many Malls (the real ones, not the strip ones — with Bloomies and Macy’s, etc. which really mean nothing anymore as they are owned by the same company) and see all of these “young adults” that have no living memory of the Sovs and grown up with political radicalization as the norm. And yet, or perhaps because of it all, they seem listless or devoted to calling their 5s on T-Mobile.

    “Pretty Vacant” indeed. Because of them, and in honor of them, today we added Zimmerman’s “Blowin in the Wind” to the Quotes database. An interesting comparison on Youth Culture then and now — a chubby hack lip sync event on MTV.

    Wouldn’t it be devastatingly ironic if the Warlord and Cheney took the true measure of the American people after all ?

  16. Comment says

    Tweety seems to be having a breakdown – Constantly telling the CNBC babes how goo looking they are on air – then he just did the same thing with Ingram. Comment knows someone who does a vicously hilarious imitation of Tweety, but it would be too harsh for snl.

  17. Comment says

    Jim WTF indeed. Doc, one of the reasons Comment discounted speculation in 2000 that Dubya would “do” Iraq was because of the way the NG & reserve rotation schedule. It seemed like only a a President with a foolish and frivolous mind and a masochistic heart would go thru with such a thing. Alas, it now seems like he was always intending to “do” Iraq.

  18. DrLeoStrauss says

    Excellent points, Jim, and thanks for helping everyone get clear. That’s an incredibly important point. How to say this? At least one general noted above (again not Pace’s 4) does not need Active On! to solve his feeling of jointness. But the others were indeed service.

    As most readers know from our conversations or before, the Army today was designed ironically by Shy Meyer to prevent an Iraq, figuring that requiring the call up of the National Guard and Reserves and exhausting and abusing them would put a political break on any future President post Johnson/Nixon.

    Jim, as you too likely recall, we didn’t rotate the draft Army home during WWII but even then the Army was in morale free Fall by Spring ’45 in Europe (not quite mutinous but enough to give Marshall and Roosevelt the willies), and then sank even lower when they were scheduled to be rotated to the Pacific theater.

    And that was only 4 years.

    It was very entertaining to see the veils fall from Tweety’s blue collar eyes last night as he almost had a seizure noted that Petreaus’ answer to “Are we making America safer staying safer in Iraq?” was “I am not sure”. For someone who worked with Tip O’Neil, Tweety can be truly dense sometimes about hearings kabuki.

  19. says

    There’s a discrepancy. Everyone agrees the crunch comes in March/April 2008. That’s when there will be a unit scheduled to rotate out but there will be no ready unit available to replace it. But Petraeus’s slides say the first withdrawals are in July 2008.

    Now, he may be playing the underpromise/overperform game. He says in September he’ll start withdrawals in July, then come March he comes back and says because of his outstanding leadership the situation is much better and he can start withdrawals three months earlier than planned.

    But it may be he means it. As I understand current Joint warfighting doctrine, in a situation where unit X is due to rotate out but the Service can’t replace it, if the Joint Force Commander says “then unit X doesn’t rotate out”, he wins. He can be overruled by the Joint chain, but not by the Service chain, up to and including the CSA and Secretary of the Army. If, in March, Petraeus says everyone stays, everyone stays. He can be overriden by his CINC, the Chairman or the President (or, I suppose, by SecDef acting for the President). And if Fallon does override him, he gets to resign and become The Man Who Wasn’t Allowed To Win The War: Petraeus 2012.

    Nor am I sure he’d be wrong. We didn’t rotate troops through Theater in WW2. If Iraq is important enough, then it trumps troop rotations. If it isn’t that important, then what the f*** are we doing there?

  20. Comment says

    IMO – It’s tough for the US media to cover events such as that in Europe for a variety of reasons. As Dr. Strauss noted, they were looking for a neo Nazi narrative (maybe) and there are just too many conflicting narratives at play – so the media prefers to discuss bs instead.

  21. Dr Leo Strauss says

    daveg, here is i think the primary issue noted by that blog:

    “There was a HUGE press presence – at least 100 media people including reporters and photographers. If getting press coverage was the goal of this event then it was a success.

    The media was desperately looking for a story and crowding around every arrest. They were also doing many interviews with the crowd.

    My impression was that the press was generally looking to find a “neo-Nazi” story line, but they were also a willing to hear why people were concerned about Islam.

    The organizers could have been more sophisticated, or at least better prepared to make their message heard. Yes, they got the press to come to the event, but they did not use the opportunity as effectively as possible.

    In my opinion, the protesters needed to have signs with short, clear messages that could by photographed quickly by the press and put out for all to see. Whatever the bias of the press, they are desperate for a story – any story – and they would have taken photos of signs or any other images that would create interest.”

    The American media have atrophied to the point that almost NONE of them have bureaux or a presence that is not London-based (television for sure). So they need the European feeds to even make an editorial decision (of course, they are in the eyeball business, even the hard core Lefties out to sap and impurify our precious bodily fluids) — and protests and riot police make for good brain rot cable coverage.

    Your real culprits here were the incoherent organizers. They should call Ken Mehlman and get some pointers on blunt force messaging, no?

  22. Comment says

    Hey Doc – did you read the text of UBL’s spiel? What did you make of the fact that Osama seemed to mention both Perle and Scheuer?

  23. says

    Hey, there was a protest in Brussels today against the Islamification of Europe. Hear anything about it?

    Didn’t think so. You don’t need to know.

    There are some pictures of the non-event here.

  24. Hunter says

    A quote for the machine:

    “When everything is bad, it must be good to know the worst.”
    -Francis H. Bradley, Appearance and Reality, x.

    I also think Gibson’s description of the media consuming public from Idoru (a giant potato-like blob with a thousand mouths that can only express its rage at the world by changing the channel on a TV set) should go in, but I can’t find my copy. I’ll hit a bookstore later…

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