Obama's Secretary of Defense admits success…

in Iraq. Shhhh.

The president’s special envoy, Richard Holbrooke, was asked for his definition of success last month and here’s what he said.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

AMB. RICHARD HOLBROOKE, SPECIAL ENVOY, PAKISTAN & AFGHANISTAN: I would say this about defining success in Afghanistan and Pakistan. In the simplest sense, the Supreme Court test for another issue, we’ll know it when we see it.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

STEPHANOPOULOS: Is that good enough?

GATES: Well, I think — I think we know it when we see it and we see it in Iraq. I think that success in Afghanistan looks a great deal like success in Iraq, in this respect, that the Afghan national security forces increasingly take the lead in protecting their own territory and going after the insurgents and protecting their own people.

1 thought on “Obama's Secretary of Defense admits success…

  1. You’re saying we’ve achieved “success in Iraq?” Hmm…I think you’re almost exactly five years late with that “scoop”. October 7, 2004, was the day the Kay/Duelfer report, which concluded there were no WMD in Iraq, was formally issued.

    As interesting as your Gates quote is, I’m pretty sure that “the Iraqi national security forces increasingly take the lead in protecting their own territory and going after the insurgents and protecting their own people” was not the reason – not even among the reasons – we were given in answer to why we had to go to war in Iraq, NOWNOWNOWNOWNOW, by the chickenhawk brigade in the Bush administration. For reference, those reasons were:

    Iraq has WMD – see above, none found – but also see here (bolded passage) for one of many credible pre-war declarations that there weren’t any there, period.
    Iraq had violated UN resolutions for yearsso had many countries, including Israel and Indonesia; thus obviously not something the US cares about, and therefore not a credible reason.
    Iraq was “not a democracy” (like Israel) – again…so? Iraq wasn’t a Democracy for years when we were supporting them, either. Nor are many countries with leaders we support – for various reasons.
    Iraq was an egregious human rights violator, oppressing its own people and other countries’ citizens captured in war. Again, so are many countries with tin-pot dictators whom we support to varying degrees. The key trait to look for is whether any specific tin-pot dictator is willing to be a compliant client-state, willing to open up their resources to exclusive contracts by US (and occasionally other western) corporate interests. If yes? Oppress away, my good man. If no? Then we’ll label you a “dangerous tyrant” who’s guilty of “oppressing his people,” and call for your ouster.
    Iraq used torture – yes, heavens whatever shall we do about that horrible practice? (eye roll). I’d say our credibility in terms of being able to look down our clutched pearls at any of the “barbaric and backwards” countries who do such things has been set back by the Bush administration by about three decades, minimum.
    Iraq had links to Al Qaeda – interesting to be revisiting this today, since after a FOIA request, twenty separate formal FBI interviews with Hussein were just released to the National Security Archives. In them, Hussein (now with nothing to lose) repeatedly calls Bin Laden a “zealot” and says they had nothing to do with him. Then, of course, there is Bush’s own admission to Martha Raddatz that Al Qaeda was not in Iraq until AFTER the invasion.
    Iraq told lies and misled the world community – NO. You don’t say (smacks forehead).

    Now, again…I don’t recall seeing “the Iraqi national security forces increasingly take the lead in protecting their own territory and going after the insurgents and protecting their own people” on that list. Could you point it out for me?

    Awful shame, though, about all those dead US soldiers and the tens of thousands of dead Iraqi civilians, given that all the reasons that actually were given, prior to the war, were either false, or things we routinely tolerate in various other countries’ leaders’ behavior. Ah, well. Can’t make an omelette without breaking a few thousand American families, right?

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