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View Full Version : SecDef Roberts: "Couldn't Be Happier"



Captain Blight
10-29-2009, 05:34 PM
With our progress in Afghanistan (http://www.theonion.com/content/news/u_s_continues_quagmire_building)


Crap. Robert Gates, I mean, not Roberts. Don't take nyQuil in the middle of the day, kids, no matter how bad your cold gets. This sort of thing might happen.

Donn
10-29-2009, 05:43 PM
You could delete the thread. It's useless anyway, like most of the threads started today. What is this, "Start a Stupid Thread Day?"

Captain Blight
10-29-2009, 06:14 PM
Donn, did you even click the link? You should click the link.

S/V Laura Ellen
10-29-2009, 06:23 PM
A well written, insightful account typical of this highly esteemed outfit.

Donn
10-29-2009, 06:27 PM
Of course I didn't "click the link." Why would I? I've never agreed with the way we've dealt with Afghanistan, from the start. Gates is simply the latest incarnation of faulty tactics in that God-Forsaken part of the world. It's been going on for centuries, and the Talies seem to be the only side who have figured it out.

ljb5
10-29-2009, 06:30 PM
Of course I didn't "click the link." Why would I?

:D

No one's forcing you to click the link.

Then again, no one is forcing you to post on this thread.

It does seem like the two would go well together, but you do what you want.

JimD
10-29-2009, 06:32 PM
According to Gates:

With more than 80 percent of the country currently under Taliban control, Defense Secretary Robert Gates argued that U.S. nation-dismantling efforts are actually proceeding ahead of schedule.
Not only Gates but the president himself is also confident meaningful steps in the right direction are being taken:


"We've spent a lot of time and money fostering the turmoil and despair necessary to make this a sustaining quagmire, and we're not going to stop now," President Barack Obama said in a national address Monday night. "It won't be easy, but with enough tactical errors on the ground, shortsighted political strategies, and continued ignorance of our vast cultural differences, we could have a horrific, full-fledged quagmire by 2012."
Added Obama, "Together, we can make Afghanistan into a nightmarish hell-scape Americans will regret for generations to come."

Bob Smalser
10-29-2009, 09:13 PM
I've never agreed with the way we've dealt with Afghanistan, from the start. Gates is simply the latest incarnation of faulty tactics in that God-Forsaken part of the world. It's been going on for centuries, and the Talies seem to be the only side who have figured it out.

I couldn't agree more.


..... But many Afghans, he wrote in his resignation letter, are fighting the United States largely because its troops are there -- a growing military presence in villages and valleys where outsiders, including other Afghans, are not welcome and where the corrupt, U.S.-backed national government is rejected.

- Matthew Hoh, US Foreign Service

A COIN strategy that worked in Iraq probably won't for a decade or more in Afghanistan, because unlike a country that has had a relatively modern central government, military and police structures since the 1920's, Afghanistan is completely tribal with nothing at all to build on. (So is Yemen, Somalia and Sudan for the overly ambitious out there.)

Plus no strategy, however sound, will work without an administration with the fortitude to see it all the way through.

Which means it's time to leave, and concentrate on supporting Pakistan, which has strong structural systems throught most of the country except in their few remaining tribal areas on the Afghan border. We can always go back into Afghanistan and chase all the bad guys into the hills again if we need to.

ljb5
10-29-2009, 09:20 PM
Bob, you're probably right.

Good thing you're not running for office. I'd hate to hear Glen Beck and John McCain call you a coward and a traitor.

BTW: I don't know what to think about Matthew Hoh. He might be absolutely correct and clear-sighted, or he might just be suffering from job burnout for having served so long and diligently under such difficult circumstances.

Bob Smalser
10-30-2009, 12:57 AM
Forget the Taliban, Iran, North Korea, Libya, Syria, Al Qaida.....

When tiny Scotland disses you.

When Canada demonstrates more guts and perseverance.

When bankrupt Russia humiliates you.

When a nerd like Gordon Brown and half the British newspapers demonstrate more fortitude.

When short, skinny, Frenchmen counsel you about your nonexistent leadership to your face.

When Chinese bankers laugh at you.

When former sycophants like Peggy Noonan and Christopher Buckley call you an excuse-begger and callous child.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703363704574503631430926354.html

http://www.thedailybeast.com/blogs-and-stories/2009-10-28/its-time-for-us-to-go/?cid=hp:mostpopular5

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748704224004574489530713762884.html

But mostly, when a vacillating wuss and brown-noser-in-chief like David Brooks says you lack the necessary tenacity.....

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/30/opinion/30brooks.html?_r=2

You know your gig is about up as a wartime President.

ljb5
10-30-2009, 03:13 AM
Forget the Taliban, Iran, North Korea, Libya, Syria, Al Qaida.....

When tiny Scotland disses you.

When Canada demonstrates more guts and perseverance.

When bankrupt Russia humiliates you.

When a nerd like Gordon Brown and half the British newspapers demonstrate more fortitude.

When short, skinny, Frenchmen counsel you about your nonexistent leadership to your face.

When Chinese bankers laugh at you.

When former sycophants like Peggy Noonan and Christopher Buckley call you an excuse-begger and callous child.



Peggy Noonan was an Obama sycophant?

It's pretty clear that the "liberal" press wants Obama to fail. Half of them say he already has.

One thing we learned from the Bush presidency: there is no such thing as failure. After eight years of faltering economy and mismanaged war, the worst they can say about you is: "We must wait for future historians to decide."

If it's too soon to declare Bush a failure, it's certainly too soon to declare Obama a failure.

John of Phoenix
10-30-2009, 09:52 AM
You know your gig is about up as a wartime President.
So when was Bush done as a wartime President?

He went into Afghanistan less than a month after 9/11. How long did you give him to get bin Laden before his gig was up?

He went into Iraq in March 2003 with "Mission Accomplished" on May 1. Given Rumsfeld's "six weeks, maybe six months" estimate, would you call him on it at SIX FU<&ING YEARS? Or just give him a pass?

Yeah, Obama's gig is definately up at nine months.

Tylerdurden
10-30-2009, 09:55 AM
:D

No one's forcing you to click the link.

Then again, no one is forcing you to post on this thread.

It does seem like the two would go well together, but you do what you want.


Deja vu , Could swear I have written that before?;)

Tylerdurden
10-30-2009, 09:57 AM
How much longer till we all understand that Obama and Bush are the same puppets?

http://i30.photobucket.com/albums/c350/mudhutwarrior/bipartisan.jpg

George.
10-30-2009, 10:05 AM
You know, for a while there while scrolling down this thread, I found myself agreeing with Donn, Smalser, and ljb! :eek: :eek:

But as I read on down the page, I realized it was just a fleeting conjuncture. :D

oznabrag
10-30-2009, 12:51 PM
Forget the Taliban, Iran, North Korea, Libya, Syria, Al Qaida.....
.

Gee, Bob, the link is to a satire in The Onion!

Given your stance, I think you'd find it a rollicking, side-splitting riot!

Even I thought it was funny!

Wait...You didn't read it, did you?

bobbys
10-30-2009, 12:59 PM
Gee, Bob, the link is to a satire in The Onion!

Given your stance, I think you'd find it a rollicking, side-splitting riot!

Even I thought it was funny!

Wait...You didn't read it, did you?.

Maybe he forgot youse guys are getting your news from the Onion and daily show?

Bob Smalser
10-30-2009, 02:36 PM
This is about confidence. Or more accurately, lack of it.

When you have a kid who at age 21 has already rolled the dice in Iraq as a cavalryman for 12 months dodging IED's and RPG's, and is slated for Afghanistan in another 24 or sooner, you might not think this is so amusing. When I did that kind of stuff I was invincible. I still am. My children not so much.

You are correct this is about Bush. Not only don't I see a coherent, winning strategy for Afghanistan, I'm convinced we are only still fighting this "good war" because of an anti-Bush campaign promise. What's left of Al Qaida is in Pakistan, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen, not Afghanistan.

The Taliban are country boys subordinate to clans and tribes who'd still be happily fighting each other if we weren't there to give them focus. Moreover, they are all usually available for hire at inexpensive rates to fight whoever you want them to fight outside of their own clan. Tribal raiding is what they do, and have done since Alexander the Great, who had the good sense to hire them for his purposes.

And worse, we announced we had a "new" strategy last March and committed reinforcements to it. Now we are wavering over it....and not because of Afghanistan elections, but because of New Jersey, Virginia and New York elections. Does Obama think we are so stupid to not to realize that the USG has known Karzai (and the culture) is crooked relative to ours in such regards? And has been since we've known him? What else did we expect?

Getting dissed by Scotland and others wasn't put there to be sarcastic. Like the campaign promise to commit us to "the good war", Obama's critics may push him into making a decision he's not personally committed to just to demonstrate how tough he is. I find that more scary than Bush. What is conveniently ignored today is that the world would have had to deal with Saddam's Iraq eventually, the issues were only when, to what degree, and who would pay.

Paul Pless
10-30-2009, 02:44 PM
Good post Mr. Smalser.

bobbys
10-30-2009, 02:55 PM
Well written Mr Smalser!!!

oznabrag
10-30-2009, 02:58 PM
Good post Mr. Smalser.


Second that.

Also, thank you, Mr. Smalser, for having clarified your position in such coherent terms.

Further, I would like to say that I hope your kid comes through that hell-hole 100% intact.

George.
10-31-2009, 05:59 AM
Colonel Smalser, you are a vacillating wuss and a brown-noser.

You were all gung-ho for wars to change the world and bring democracy and rule of law to places that never had it when someone from your party, a man of the sort you are conditioned to respect, was commander in chief. But now the Commander-in-Chief is a black liberal democrat, and all those soldiers you are so proud of have to fight according to his orders - and suddenly you are not only against the war in principle and in practice, but you manage to pre-emptively blame its likely continuation on him.

Someone would have to deal with Saddam eventually? Give us a break! Who is dealing with Iran? Who is dealing with North Korea? Who is dealing with Russia? If Bush had invaded Iran instead of Iraq you would be lecturing us about what a good thing that was, and how we would be in trouble otherwise.

Saddam was a pathetic old tyrant with nothing but a bluff and an attitude, and would have gone the way of Qaddafi and Fidel. No need to kill so many people to remove him.



When you have a kid who at age 21 has already rolled the dice in Iraq as a cavalryman for 12 months dodging IED's and RPG's, and is slated for Afghanistan in another 24 or sooner, you might not think this is so amusing. When I did that kind of stuff I was invincible. I still am. My children not so much.


And yet your children are being led into danger by officers who thinks they are invincible, just like you used to. And by extension, they think your children are invincible too.

Is the realization of that fact the reason for your change of mind, or is it pure partisan politics?

I remember you lecturing me about an incident at sea, where I mentioned how terrified I was during a near-collision with a ship at night, with my wife sleeping below. You compared that with your "bravery" leading other people's children through much more dangerous conditions in the Persian Gulf. Perhaps you now begin to understand the difference.

ljb5
10-31-2009, 10:58 AM
And worse, we announced we had a "new" strategy last March and committed reinforcements to it. Now we are wavering over it.....

Bob: all military commanders waver over deployment decisions. Only the truly stupid blindly follow a path without ever stopping to think where it's going. So what you call "wavering" is what we see as leadership.

Is Obama 'wavering' because of the NY and NJ elections? Possibly. Domestic support is an important concern in any oversees adventure. It's also part of his job.

Remember: Mr. Obama works for the people of New York and New Jersey (and all the other states).... not for the people of Afghanistan. So I'm not concerned that he may be taking their views into consideration.

Besides, Mr. Bush's false bravado was largely a show he was putting on for the domestic voters he was trying to win over. I don't remember you complaining about that at the time.

Bob Smalser
10-31-2009, 12:28 PM
....You were all gung-ho for wars to change the world and bring democracy and rule of law to places that never had it......


....So what you call "wavering" is what we see as leadership.......Besides, Mr. Bush's false bravado was largely a show he was putting on for the domestic voters he was trying to win over. I don't remember you complaining about that at the time.

As usual, neither of you have a single clue what you're talking about.


30 Sep 2002. Frankly, until we commit ourselves to putting the whole package together in Iraq, I'm not interested. Kill a whole slew of innocent folks to no avail, because a few years or decades later you'll have to go in and do it again. We've already demonstrated that we can take that whole country down in minimum time with minimum losses, and get Iraq's neighbors to pay our expenses in doing it.....

....I'd wait till Saddam does something sufficiently stupid to gain international consensus, then go in, do it right and hope to get somebody else to pay for it. “An eye for an eye…” didn’t solve anything in the Old Testament, and it won’t solve anything now. That’s why Israel is in such of a mess, and we are inclined to fall in that trap with them.....

Green cards aren't a problem for volunteers. So if you heros have finally found a war you like and a leader you want to follow, then I'd suggest it's time to shut up and man up:

http://www.goarmy.com/#/?marquee=officership&channel=careers
http://www.marines.com/

Otherwise you know what you can do:

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/181/441471036_ef3b930b95.jpg

Donn
10-31-2009, 12:35 PM
Green cards aren't a problem for volunteers. So if you heros have finally found a war you like and a leader you want to follow, then it's time to shut up and man up:

http://www.goarmy.com/#/?marquee=off...hannel=careers
http://www.marines.com/

ROFL!

I can't speak for the Army, but I don't think they'd get through Marine Corps Boot Camp.

ljb5
10-31-2009, 12:50 PM
30 Sep 2002. Frankly, until we commit ourselves to putting the whole package together in Iraq, I'm not interested.

I thought we were talking about Afghanistan? Doesn't matter.

So you weren't interested in Bush's Iraq war? I'm sure you were much less supportive of his Afghanistan strategy, right... because that's where he really short-changed the mission.

Bush ran both wars for his supporters back home. He gave just enough bravado to look tough (and win elections), but not enough effort to be successful.

I don't want to rehash the last seven years of Iraq/Afghanistan arguments. The fact that there are even seven years of arguments to look back upon indicates that something fell far short of resounding success.

For the first time since this began, we now have a Commander in Chief who is willing to listen to differing opinions, willing to consider different approaches and not afraid to change course.

There are, of course, no easy answers and no "Golden Path" to follow that will easily and certainly lead to victory. Bush used to tell us that there was a clear choice between success and failure. That's not true and never was. There is nothing but a thousand different flavors of bittersweet.

I'm comfortable that we now have a president who understands this reality, rather than one who thinks he can keep selling us a fantasy of easy victory year after year.

ljb5
10-31-2009, 12:55 PM
I can't speak for the Army, but I don't think they'd get through Marine Corps Boot Camp.

Actually, I had the highest physical fitness score of any applicant in my group at Annapolis in '93.

Of course, back then I was 17 years old, training for gymnastics twenty hours a week and could do thirty pull ups without stopping. Now, I get winded after 120 miles on the bike.

No kidding.

But that's okay. I didn't really expect you to know anything about my physical fitness. We know you're just talking out of your ass.