Mercury Rising 鳯女

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Archive for June 24th, 2010

Petraeus Must Be Wanting To Slug McChrystal Right Now

Posted by Phoenix Woman on June 24, 2010

Far from allowing Petraeus to advance his chances of becoming president, Stanley’s incessant insubordination has in all likelihood quashed any chance Petraeus had at sitting at the big desk in the Oval Office. Here’s how:

I firmly believe that McChrystal has been bucking to get booted since at least last September — remember folks, this is NOT the first time he’s been insubordinate — because even though Obama’s given him everything he wanted, things haven’t magically improved in Afghanistan. Not when we’re paying the Taliban $15,000 a truck to let us supply ourselves before we shoot at them.

So long as Petraeus was associated with Iraq, where (thanks to the truce with the Shiite leaders) things are going a lot better, he gets to look golden. But now that he’s been forced to reassume responsibility for Afghanistan — and make no mistake, he developed the policy that McChrystal was implementing; Petraeus oversaw the writing of a 2006 US counterinsurgency manual that was the basis for McChrystal’s COIN strategy in Afghanistan — two things will happen:

1) He is automatically out of the running for 2012. He can’t be running things on the ground in AfPak and running an election campaign at home. Plus, it will be harder for him to sell any illusory progress as the UN has a reporting program in place that can and will undercut any efforts he makes towards bullshittery.

It will take him the better part of a year just to try to figure out how to pull out of Afghanistan without it looking like we (as did the Brits and Russians before us) are fleeing after having got our asses kicked by the natives. Then it will take him a year to implement that CYA strategy, by which time it’s the middle of 2012 and he’ll have missed nearly all of primary season. This is assuming that he gets every possible break going his way, which he won’t. It’s more likely that he’ll spend 2010 and 2011 not-so-subtly whining about how he’s not getting support from the White House even though Obama will be giving him everything he says he needs.

2) He is likely out for 2016 and 2020 as well. He can’t dodge the inevitable stink of failure that will stick to him no matter how much he tries to scrub it off. In fact, he may well still be in Afghanistan and thus unable to run no matter what. And even if by some miracle he avoids the blame for Afghanistan or manages to eventually rewrite or suppress history, he can’t run in 2024 because by that time he’ll be seventy-two years old, if he’s still alive by then.

This is a tacit admission on President Obama’s part that Afghanistan has just ate up another empire. He’s throwing Petraeus at it, forcing him to own the COIN policy he originated, precisely because Obama doesn’t think it’s going to work — and in the meantime Obama has managed to dispose of the biggest potential Republican threat to his reelection.

Posted in 2012, Afghanistan, Obama Administration, Republicans, September 11, terrorism | 10 Comments »

Fmr. US Agents: Pollard Spied At Israeli Government’s Orders, Not Those Of Some “Rogue” Operator

Posted by Phoenix Woman on June 24, 2010

This was reiterated as noted in the WaPo, in response to Israeli ambassador Michael Oren’s clueless denial:

Ron Olive, the former naval counterintelligence agent who cracked the Pollard case, said Israel confessed to running Pollard as part of an attempt to gain his release from prison during Middle East peace talks in 1998.

“For 13 years they denied it,” Olive said in a telephone interview. “But they finally admitted Pollard was an agent fully sanctioned by the government of Israel.”

“The ambassador didn’t have a clue as to what he was talking about when he said the Pollard spy case was a rogue operation,” added Olive, who also wrote the most authoritative account of the case in a 2006 book.

Paul Pillar, the CIA’s former national intelligence officer for the Near East and South Asia, told the radio station that he had “never heard any suggestion that it was anything other than an official operation.”

As for current operations here, Pillar said that “it is … in Israel’s interests, as defined by them, to obtain as much information as possible of the kind Pollard was collecting.”

And of course Pollard himself admitted years ago that he worked for the LAKAM branch of Israeli intelligence.

Posted in israel | 4 Comments »

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