"White House is completely disconnected from reality"

Sayhey

macrumors 68000
Original poster
May 22, 2003
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I found this article via a link at Arianna Huffington's website, The Huffington Post and thought it of interest. Perhaps there are a few republicans willing to take on the Bush War "strategy." Too bad Hagel and McCain thought Party loyalty more important than loyalty to the truth and to the nation prior to last year's election.

Nebraska Republican Sen. Chuck Hagel is angry. He's upset about the more than 1,700 U.S. soldiers killed and nearly 13,000 wounded in Iraq. He's also aggravated by the continued string of sunny assessments from the Bush administration, such as Vice President Dick Cheney's recent remark that the insurgency is in its "last throes." "Things aren't getting better; they're getting worse. The White House is completely disconnected from reality," Hagel tells U.S. News. "It's like they're just making it up as they go along. The reality is that we're losing in Iraq."

That's strikingly blunt talk from a member of the president's party, even one cast as something of a pariah in the GOP because of his early skepticism about the war. "I got beat up pretty good by my own party and the White House that I was not a loyal Republican," he says. Today, he notes, things are changing: "More and more of my colleagues up here are concerned."

Indeed, there are signs that the politics of the Iraq war are being reshaped by the continuing tide of bad news. Take this month in Iraq, with 47 U.S. troops killed in the first 15 days. That's already five more than the toll for the entire month of June last year. With the rate of insurgent attacks near an all-time high and the war's cost set to top $230 billion, more politicians on both sides of the aisle are responding to opinion polls that show a growing number of Americans favoring a withdrawal from Iraq. Republican Sens. Lincoln Chafee and Lindsey Graham have voiced their concerns. And two Republicans, including the congressman who brought "freedom fries" to the Capitol, even joined a pair of Democratic colleagues in sponsoring a bill calling for a troop withdrawal plan to be drawn up by year's end. "I feel confident that the opposition is going to build," says Rep. Ron Paul, the other Republican sponsor and a longtime opponent of the war....
 

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
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Voinovich (sp?) was doing pretty well 'til he caved. Spectre is all gung ho now that he's struggling with Cancer (though he was often pretty moderate as far as I can tell). McCain's just trying to have his cake and eat it too, which in this case I support because I'd rather have someone like him than Frist.

They're all going to be jumping ship based on the numbers I've seen lately. Sinking ship and all. That is, they should, of they want to keep their jobs. Not that the ones in the deep south need to worry much, but the rest might.
 

Thomas Veil

macrumors 68020
Feb 14, 2004
2,435
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OBJECTIVE reality
Well, congratulations to Sen. Hagel for recognizing the reality that the rest of us have been talking about for years now. But it's not just the WH. Almost the entire GOP is disconnected from reality. They have their fantasy view of the world, and any facts that don't fit it are discarded.

Interestingly, Howard Dean got creamed for calling the Republicans a monolithic party. But see what happens when a few GOP members get "out of line"? All of a sudden they're "disloyal".
 

Desertrat

macrumors newbie
Jul 4, 2003
2
706
Terlingua, Texas
Reminds me of the old joke about some military campaign in Chaostan: A guard calls to his officer, "Sir! I have caught a Tatar!" "Let him go." "I can't; he won't let me!"

Hindsight is wonderful, of course. It seems to me that the White House was unduly optimistic about how many troops should have been used in the initial first-strike of the war. As I recall it, early on some general declared that more men should have been sent in to be able to quickly clamp down on armed resistance after the first phase of combat was over.

The glaring error in somebody's judgement, somewhere, was in not spending more time to assess and anticipate the aftermath: The reaction in the neighboring countries, insofar as men coming into Iraq to continue this guerilla-style warfare.

Phase 1 went well; Phase 2 shows insufficient forethought in planning and execution.

'Rat
 

Xtremehkr

macrumors 68000
Jul 4, 2004
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Hindsight, you speak as though no one pointed out the problems that invading Iraq would cause.

What did Colin Powell say, 'you break it and you buy it'? Iraq is a pottery barn? something along those lines.

Who invades a country without an exit strategy?

And what does claiming that the insurgency being in its last throes when it clearly is not have to do with hindsight?

Cheese and rice, hindsight has nothing to do with misrepresenting the situation the way Cheney is trying to 'Rat.
 

Dont Hurt Me

macrumors 603
Dec 21, 2002
6,056
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Yahooville S.C.
Xtremehkr said:
Hindsight, you speak as though no one pointed out the problems that invading Iraq would cause.

What did Colin Powell say, 'you break it and you buy it'? Iraq is a pottery barn? something along those lines.

Who invades a country without an exit strategy?

And what does claiming that the insurgency being in its last throes when it clearly is not have to do with hindsight?

Cheese and rice, hindsight has nothing to do with misrepresenting the situation the way Cheney is trying to 'Rat.
Cheney is a Dick.
 

Dont Hurt Me

macrumors 603
Dec 21, 2002
6,056
6
Yahooville S.C.
Xtremehkr said:
Isn't he though, yet so many people worship the ground he walks on. I don't get it.
Extremist Zealots who are Republican first then American. Demo's have the same crap going In their Party. Lets put America first but we cant seem to do that. Extremist are running both parties and it isnt good for anyone in the U.S.A.. All you extremist just suck. Take your Partys and .......................
Everyone should register Independent just to show these two screwballs. George Washington didnt intend this crap. Maybe we should have made him King!
:mad:
 

jefhatfield

Retired
Jul 9, 2000
8,803
0
this second term is W's chance to make a legacy and erase our current bad memory of the rather disasterous first term he had...even though many did not directly blame his administration

..but i think the number of disgruntled republicans grows every day the economy slags and the war in iraq drags on

W's father lost his bid for a second term due to the perception that he was out of touch with america, but i think the son is so far out that he doesn't know it anymore and has surrounded himself with people who won't tell him the truth

i think dick cheney is the only one who could scold the president and i am sure he has on numerous occassions behind closed doors...as much as i don't agree with dick cheney, he would be better in the white house than george w bush
 

Xtremehkr

macrumors 68000
Jul 4, 2004
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I think the republicans have been so ruthless lately because they know their hold on power is tenuous at best. They are proving themselves to be the opposite of what they have been campaigning against for so long, and the policies that they have been promising would be so good are causing economic havoc. People can only deny the obvious for so long.

Does anybody really believe that the insurgency is in its last throes? Anybody at all who is willing to back Mr Cheney on this one?
 

mactastic

macrumors 68040
Apr 24, 2003
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Desertrat said:
Reminds me of the old joke about some military campaign in Chaostan: A guard calls to his officer, "Sir! I have caught a Tatar!" "Let him go." "I can't; he won't let me!"
:D

Hindsight is wonderful, of course. It seems to me that the White House was unduly optimistic about how many troops should have been used in the initial first-strike of the war. As I recall it, early on some general declared that more men should have been sent in to be able to quickly clamp down on armed resistance after the first phase of combat was over.
That was Gen. Eric Shinseki, who was promptly and publicly upbraided by none other than Donald Rumsfeld. I'm sure you're also aware of the Powell Doctrine.

The glaring error in somebody's judgement, somewhere, was in not spending more time to assess and anticipate the aftermath: The reaction in the neighboring countries, insofar as men coming into Iraq to continue this guerilla-style warfare.
No, the glaring error was to ignore the years of war planning that had been done and maintained for several years because those plans didn't fit Rummy's idea of how the army should function.

Rumsfeld should have been fired or resigned by now. Bush's refusal to do so is a major blunder.

Phase 1 went well; Phase 2 shows insufficient forethought in planning and execution.

'Rat
Yes, the propaganda and fear-mongering phase went quite well. The war... not so good.
;)
 

Dont Hurt Me

macrumors 603
Dec 21, 2002
6,056
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Yahooville S.C.
Xtremehkr said:
I think he republicans have been so ruthless lately because they know their hold on power is tenuous at best. They are proving themselves to be the opposite of what they have been campaigning against for so long, and the policies that they have been promising would be so good are causing economic havoc. People can only deny the obvious for so long.

Does anybody really believe that the insurgency is in its last throes? Anybody at all who is willing to back mr Cheney on this one?
I so agree. I have been saying in many posts history will repeat itself. Look to the 50s..........its coming again. Republicans will be wondering what happened?
 

Xtremehkr

macrumors 68000
Jul 4, 2004
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Dont Hurt Me said:
I so agree. I have been saying in many posts history will repeat itself. Look to the 50s..........its coming again. Republicans will be wondering what happened?
The republicans got another shot at the 50s, time for the democrats to get another shot at the 60s. Based on the period that yielded the best results for people, it will set the republicans back another 50 or 60 years.
 

Dont Hurt Me

macrumors 603
Dec 21, 2002
6,056
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Yahooville S.C.
Xtremehkr said:
The republicans got another shot at the 50s, time for the democrats to get another shot at the 60s. Based on the period that yielded the best results for people, it will set the republicans back another 50 or 60 years.
After the past 5 years i can only say lets hope so. Thats coming from a former Republican. or perhaps a liberal conservative but was told today iam a realist. where is that party?
:confused:
 

miloblithe

macrumors 68020
Nov 14, 2003
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Washington, DC
Desertrat said:
Hindsight is wonderful, of course. It seems to me that the White House was unduly optimistic about how many troops should have been used in the initial first-strike of the war. As I recall it, early on some general declared that more men should have been sent in to be able to quickly clamp down on armed resistance after the first phase of combat was over.

The glaring error in somebody's judgement, somewhere, was in not spending more time to assess and anticipate the aftermath: The reaction in the neighboring countries, insofar as men coming into Iraq to continue this guerilla-style warfare.

Phase 1 went well; Phase 2 shows insufficient forethought in planning and execution.

'Rat
This kind of assessment is revisionism. This was not a case of 'hindsight'. There were plenty of people with foresight. There were tons of people, before the invasion, saying we didn't have enough troops to secure the country. Tons of crazy left-wingers. Like John McCain.
 

IJ Reilly

macrumors P6
Jul 16, 2002
17,915
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Yes, it's time once again for Quote-o-Rama! For 100 points, who said the following:

If we don't stop extending our troops all around the world in nation-building missions, then we 're going to have a serious problem coming down the road. I'm going to prevent that.

[Somalia] started off as a humanitarian mission then changed into a nation-building mission and that’s where the mission went wrong. I think our troops ought to be used to fight and win war. But in this case, it was a nation-building exercise. And same with Haiti. I wouldn’t have supported either.

I am worried about over-committing our military around the world. I want to be judicious in its use. I don’t think nation-building missions are worthwhile.

I think what we need to do is convince people who live in the lands they live in to build the nations. Maybe I'm missing something here. I mean, we're going to have kind of a nation-building corps from America? Absolutely not.

We're not into nation-building, we're into justice.
 

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
5,693
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miloblithe said:
Like John McCain.
And Richard Clarke, though why would we listen to them. :rolleyes: Of course there were plenty of those crazy liberals like Dean who turned out to be correct too. But let's not forget that Kerry jumped on the Iraq bandwagon. It was hard to vote for a New England rich boy who supported the war and the Patriot Act simply because I disliked the other New England rich boy who started the war and helped to create the Patriot Act. Now that Iraq is going so bad and public opinion slips further down, it's hard to believe Johnny-come-latelys who've suddenly developed consciences. Better late than never I guess.

1st step: Propaganda. 2nd step: ? 3rd step: Profit!
 

solvs

macrumors 603
Jun 25, 2002
5,693
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LaLaLand, CA
IJ Reilly said:
Yes, it's time once again for Quote-o-Rama! For 100 points, who said the following:
Doesn't take a google search to know who that was. That last line was something I'd never forget he said. Apparently, everyone else has. :(

'Cept you guys of course. ;)
 

atszyman

macrumors 68020
Sep 16, 2003
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Desertrat said:
Hindsight is wonderful, of course. It seems to me that the White House was unduly optimistic about how many troops should have been used in the initial first-strike of the war. As I recall it, early on some general declared that more men should have been sent in to be able to quickly clamp down on armed resistance after the first phase of combat was over.

The glaring error in somebody's judgement, somewhere, was in not spending more time to assess and anticipate the aftermath: The reaction in the neighboring countries, insofar as men coming into Iraq to continue this guerilla-style warfare.
Let's not forget Larry Lindsey who predicted that the war would cost the US between $100-200 billion, and was promptly fired and new estimates came out at under $50 billion.

link

Why is it that this administration fires anyone who makes a somewhat accurate prediction and yet everyone who makes a prediction that is orders of magnitude off from the reality gets to keep their job?
 

jefhatfield

Retired
Jul 9, 2000
8,803
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solvs said:
And Richard Clarke, though why would we listen to them. :rolleyes: Of course there were plenty of those crazy liberals like Dean who turned out to be correct too. But let's not forget that Kerry jumped on the Iraq bandwagon. It was hard to vote for a New England rich boy who supported the war and the Patriot Act simply because I disliked the other New England rich boy who started the war and helped to create the Patriot Act. Now that Iraq is going so bad and public opinion slips further down, it's hard to believe Johnny-come-latelys who've suddenly developed consciences. Better late than never I guess.

1st step: Propaganda. 2nd step: ? 3rd step: Profit!
wait, just one second

i thought george w bush was born poor and in west texas!
 

mactastic

macrumors 68040
Apr 24, 2003
3,647
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jefhatfield said:
wait, just one second

i thought george w bush was born poor and in west texas!
Yeah, and he's a rancher too! Just look at all the tree-clearin' he's done in the past 5 years! Now that's hard work I tell you what.
 

Desertrat

macrumors newbie
Jul 4, 2003
2
706
Terlingua, Texas
milo, I don't see it as revisionism. The administration did not want to hear ideas contrary to the "common wisdom" as they saw it. They did not do their homework as to any after-combat, policing-type situation which could allow exiting much sooner than what has been reality.

It may be that somebody foresaw that many men would come in from Syria and Iran to take part in the present fighting I've called Phase 2. I don't recall seeing that alleged, back at the time of our invasion. I don't see it as revisionism to say that the administration apparently didn't take such a possibility into account; if they did, they sadly underestimated the problem.

FWIW, I'm using the terms "combat" and "Phase 1" to mean that period of WW II-style fighting with Hussein's army.

I dunno. To me, both our main political party upper-echelon folks seem eat up with the "I know what's best..." hubris. Neither will give any credence to any cautionary comments from the other.

Enuf...

'Rat
 

zimv20

macrumors 601
Jul 18, 2002
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toronto
Desertrat said:
The administration did not want to hear ideas contrary to the "common wisdom" as they saw it.
"everyone knows the iraqis hate saddam"
"everyone knows he has WMDs"
"everyone knows the iraqis will welcome us with flowers"

if only the administration had applied rules as strict as the ones in this forum :)
 

mactastic

macrumors 68040
Apr 24, 2003
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It was forseen and ignored by the Bush administration, most likely because it would have made rallying the country around the war harder.

Remember, the same guys that planned out our current course are still deciding things. Rumsfeld and Franks should be fired.