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Incompetent: the administration or the media?
Posted by: McQ on Monday, August 29, 2005

In the Cindy Sheehan era of claims that the majority of Americans are now against the war, Rasmussen publishes the results of a very interesting and telling poll:
Seventy-nine percent (79%) of Americans say that it is important for "Iraq to become a stable company that rejects terrorism." That figure includes 59% who say that Iraqi stability if very important to the U.S. A Rasmussen Reports survey found that just 14% say that objective is not very important or not at all important.

While 79% agree with President Bush on the importance of the Iraqi mission, just 48% believe that success is likely. In fact, just 13% say achieving stability in Iraq is "very likely." The public concerns about the War effort are primarily about competence, not ideology.
So the vast majority of those polled recognize the importance of a stable Iraq that rejects terrorism and a good majority recognize Iraqi stability is important to the US.

Very interesting and important numbers, because it speaks to the fact that most Americans aren't buying into the anti-war, 'let's get out now' rhetoric of the extreme left. Most thinking people know that Iraq must be given the opportunity to form a constituent based government that can defend itself and quell the insurgency. And most recognize such a government is critical to the interests of the US. All in all, that's good news.

But just as important is the last sentence which I've highlighted. That's now the drumbeat I hear rising.

Why is the competence of the war effort being questioned? No one is going to question the fact that mistakes have been made and things could have been planned or done better. But that's true of every war in which we've ever been engaged. So one has to ask, is it a matter of real incompetence or perceived incompetence? In other words, do we have the whole story, or only the story that is presented by the MSM?

Yeah, I know, blaming the MSM is almost cliche. But there may be some institutional factors at work that, given the situation on the ground and the culture of the MSM, all but prevent it from a more rounded presentation of the US war effort.

On "Meet the Press" yesterday, Gen. Wayne Downing, former commander of the US Special Operations Command had this to say:
Quite frankly, I think one of the problems that we're having is that the news media, the opposition to the war are framing this entire discussion in the terms of casualties and casualties only. I think what we don't have is a serious discussion about why you take those casualties.

We're not out there roaming the roads in Iraq and Afghanistan, looking for IEDs to blow up. Everything we're doing in a military campaign, both the U.S., the coalition and the Iraqi forces, are aimed at objectives. And those objectives are to promote the political process, number one, because what we're doing, Tim—for the last six weeks we've been doing this—we're preparing for the election in the middle of October—I mean, the referendum on the constitution and then the following one, the election in December to ratify it.

The other things we're doing is we're supporting the economic development of that country and the social development. That's why these military operations are going on. And I really think that it's incumbent upon you and the others and the responsible American press to put the casualties into these kind of context. In other words, what is it that they're accomplishing? I mean, can you imagine us and, you know, it's been quoted out there in the Web, judging the D-Day invasion of Normandy back in 1944 by the casualties that were suffered?
General Downing's point is critical. And it also points to a serious deficiency in the reporting by the MSM.

How many times have you read about 3 or 4 more soldiers being killed by an IED? Or in a fire fight? But rarely, if ever, do you read about why they were where they were when the incident occurred.

As Downing points out, they aren't just out there riding around providing targets. Every patrol, every sweep, every movement is a part of a larger operation, which, in turn is part of an overall tactical plan, which supports a strategic plan that has a strategic objective.

Downing correctly identifies the problem with distilling it all down to casualties. There is no context to the reporting. Without the context of the purpose of the D-Day landings, the 10,000 casualties suffered among the 156,000 troops who participated would be seen as appalling. If the atmosphere of today had prevailed then, you'd have to believe that there'd have been major anti-war demonstrations and calls to pull out immediately from the war in Europe.

But in the coolness of history, we're able to see, in the context of that war and what it accomplished, the loss, while terrible and regrettable, was necessary. But one wonders, seriously, if today's atmosphere existed then whether the effort would have been deemed as "incompetent"? My guess is any number of critics would have come forward to claim more troops were needed and losses were much to high.

I think General Downing, frankly, has hit the nail on the head with his remarks. When you frame the war as a series of random events which end in casualties, most would consider it to be a matter of incompetence. But if those casualties are given a context, are framed as a part of other things which are happening in Iraq, are shown to be part of an effort that is improving the situation, then "incompetence" doesn't fit.

So is it a measured effort by the MSM to portray the war in that way? Probably not. In my opinion, it has more to do wtih the culture of the MSM (if it bleeds it leads) and, frankly, its inability to get itself around the larger context of what the military is doing there. And that goes to an even larger point. The MSM has very little knowledge, institutionally, of how the military operates. It doesn't understand, and consequently, it is unable to connect the dots and lay out the context necessary to portray the war as anything other than a daily body count.

So when the "incompetence" charges fly again, keep this in mind. We know who's being charged with incompetence, but is it really that institution or another to which the charge really belongs?
 
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The MSM has very little knowledge, institutionally, of how the military operates.

The MSM (speaking in glittering generalities) has very little institutional knowledge about almost anything, IMO.

 
Written By: Mark
URL: http://
So is it a measured effort by the MSM to portray the war in that way? Probably not. In my opinion, it has more to do wtih the culture of the MSM (if it bleeds it leads) and, frankly, its inability to get itself around the larger context of what the military is doing there. And that goes to an even larger point. The MSM has very little knowledge, institutionally, of how the military operates. It doesn’t understand, and consequently, it is unable to connect the dots and lay out the context necessary to portray the war as anything other than a daily body count.

You’re being too charitable. You miss the fact that the media insists on portraying Iraq as a POLITICAL story, as opposed to a WAR story.


 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
The Administration and the Media are both extremely competent.

They are very skillfully carrying out a plan under the direction of the New World Order. The plan is designed to convince Americans that they are at war, which serves as a cover to plunder the resources of Iraq and build an oil pipeline. Meanwhile they are charging Americans more for the oil that they gained control of (if I recall when we were led into this conflict we were told the Iraq war would pay for itself and that gas prices would fall). The military, funded by American tax dollars, serves as the security force to guard the oil. The NWO gets the oil and the locals kill each other off.

Now that if you ask me is competency.

http://www.antiagingatlanta.com
 
Written By: Randy Smith
URL: http://www.antiagingatlanta.com
Now that if you ask me is competency.

Your posting was, if you ask me, good evidence of insanity.


 
Written By: Mark
URL: http://
A fine post, McQ. Thanks for drawing my attention to the general’s wise words.

Shark, I think that a political angle on Iraq is entirely appropriate. However, the MSM’s angle is entirely too anti-Bush and "neat and clean," which is to say that the MSM expects some kind of Jeffersonian Constitution with all the flourishes over night. This is entirely to be expected in our sound-byte era, but is grossly distorted with respect to history. Notwithstanding our American mythology, our own Constitution involved acrimonious and bitter debate...Iraq’s will be no different.
 
Written By: JABBER
URL: http://
The problem, and it’s a difficult one, is that Americans will accept casualties, but only in exchange for tangible results. The way in which this war is like Vietnam and unlike Gulf I, Panama, Grenada, Korea, WW2, WWI, etc. is that, after the fall of Baghdad (with the exception of the operation to retake Fallujah), we have not been seizing territory, which is the usual way of measuring success in war. The media can’t move arrows on the map, which is one form of progress they understand. And so, we need to find markers to show progress and success.

Support for the war surged when Saddam was captured, when his sons were killed, when Fallujah was retaken, when sovereignty was transferred, and when the elections were held. In other words, every time there was tangible progress to be set in the scale against the loss of good men. If all you tell people is that you are fighting because you want to stop the fighting, they will inevitably decide that you should just leave, and at least there will be no violence against our guys.

This is why I think (as a number of people on Left and Right have pointed out) that Bush needs to give regular updates that offer people more specifics on what progress we are making towards identifiable objectives. But that’s harder than it sounds.
 
Written By: Crank
URL: http://www.baseballcrank.com
Bush needs to give regular updates that offer people more specifics on what progress we are making towards identifiable objectives. But that’s harder than it sounds.

Yes, he does. No denying it. And yes it is harder than it sounds, because he can stand there every day beating this drum until he can’t beat it anymore and unless the MSM choose to cover it and discuss it, well, it’s so much hot air and not much more.

But I’d agree, for the most part, he nor the administration have done a good job of giving the war and the casualties context.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
The General’s point is that the war is been poorly defined as a conflict against armed groups in Iraq, because of the nature of the opposition that there are going to neccessary casualties.

The General is correct the conflict needs to be framed in terms of the enemies involved in the conflict.


The media must have somehow got it into its small liberal stoopid heads that the war is not being fought against an enemy group or groups. Those silly foolish liberals must buy into some sort of bullshit that this is a war on terrorism or a global struggle against religious extremism only then would it be responsible journalism to report the gross numbers of attacks as a listing of terrorist acts or extremist violence.

Those foolish liberal nut-jobs however do they come up with such weird theories
 
Written By: Unaha-closp
URL: http://
The Three Stages of Truth:

First, it is ridiculed;
Next, it is violently attacked;
Finally, it is held to be self-evident.
 
Written By: Randy Smith
URL: http://www.antiagingatlanta.com
The Two Stages of Nonsense:

First, it is ridiculed;
Then, it is ignored.

In your case, we’re already deep into stage two.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
I think that, in terms of the handling of the media, that the opponents to the Administration have created another "heads I win, tails you lose" situation.

If the WH handles the media well, then you have a slick Rovian machine that rides roughshod over its opponents. Alternative views are not heard, in an administration that brooks no opposition. Moreover, the media is of course not biased, notice how it swallows the WH line whole.

If the WH handles the media poorly, then you have clear signs that not only is the Administration incompetent, but it has no strategy, and certainly no working strategy. The fact that it cannot remain on-message, and has no answers (regardless of what the WH sez) is just further proof that Dubya is an idiotic chimp that has no idea what to do.

More and more, I find these sorts of discussions tiresome.
 
Written By: Lurking Observer
URL: http://
So the vast majority of those polled recognize the importance of a stable Iraq that rejects terrorism and a good majority recognize Iraqi stability is important to the US.

Very interesting and important numbers, because it speaks to the fact that most Americans aren’t buying into the anti-war, ’let’s get out now’ rhetoric of the extreme left
Non-sequitur of the year. EVERYONE is (or should be) for stability in Iraq. Have you gone so far off the deep end that you think that those who are against the war WANT a training ground for terrorists who want to KILL them? I suppose the "logic" here is that those against the war have a secret death wish to be killed by Islamic terrorists and their opposition to the war is really their way of saying they want to die. Ridiculous.

I was against the war precisely because I wanted a stable Iraq. Many of us knew that post-war Iraq would be a nightmare - and impossible to keep stable. Saddam was pinned down, hemmed in, and toothless. Was he killing his fellow Iraqis? Sure. But so what? We couldn’t possibly invade and occupy every country where that kind of thing is happening. How many US troops are in Darfur?

Here is the best explanation for why we need to pull out. It comes from a military surgeon - a captain - who operates on battlefield injuries in the Green Zone. From Defensetech:
I don’t rightly know what your US news is saying, but here are a few of my own observations... The US Army is putting forth its main effort to train Iraqi soldiers... It will realistically take years before their Army and police are sufficient to protect the people and resist internal corruption. The reports that the commands are making to the higher-ups are biased and sugar-coated. The corruption is underplayed and the achievements/milestones exaggerated. The results however, may convince Congress and that a successful pull-out is close.

At this point I’d appreciate [it]. I’ve done my part. I’ve personally come to the law-of-diminishing-returns. The remaining process will be slow and arduous. Increasing financial expenditures and man-hours are going to be needed to sustain any significant growth.

It’s similar to building a house. From the initial ground-breaking to foundation and framing, things seem to go remarkably fast, giving the home owners an unrealistic sense of impending move-in. Then the minor details like outlets, appliances, trim work, and cabinetry begin and little progress is noted after long periods. The tenants-to-be get anxious. The same is taking place here. The American public will not be able to consciously measure our productivity even with the best of media reporting.

Besides, I think the military is the wrong force at this point. We deal effectively with the combat training, but this corruption is a new species. We need Americans more attune to the nuisances of internal governmental fraud...people more like our own lawmakers. Soldiers need to focus on combat, not mafia arbitration.

I witnessed a company commander a few months ago try to expose and bring to justice the perpetrators of an intricately weaved plot of electricity theft. The King-Pin of the scheme was none other than the chairman of the city council. That went over well...

If it moves shoot it. If it doesn’t move, shoot it anyway, and leave the rest to the State Department. Bring us home.
That’s about right ....

 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
Have you gone so far off the deep end that you think that those who are against the war WANT a training ground for terrorists who want to KILL them?

You need to get out more MK.

Yes, there are indeed those who are against the war and want a training ground for terrorists who want to kill them, especially if it means the US fails and Bush fails as well.

Wake up and smell the coffee, or, as an alternative, try reading for comprehension among the screeds of the more radical of your ilk.

Here is the best explanation for why we need to pull out. It comes from a military surgeon - a captain - who operates on battlefield injuries in the Green Zone.

Ah, you’re back to believing the military again. Wow, I wish you’d make up your mind. First they’re liars, then they’re the gold standard.

Agendas do that to a person like you, don’t they?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
The MSM has very little knowledge, institutionally, of how the military operates. It doesn’t understand, and consequently, it is unable to connect the dots and lay out the context necessary to portray the war as anything other than a daily body count.

So when the "incompetence" charges fly again, keep this in mind. We know who’s being charged with incompetence, but is it really that institution or another to which the charge really belongs?
Missing the point .... The incompetence issue is not about the media or the military. It is about the civilian leadership, i.e., BushCo. You might forget, but in this country the military is still subservient to the civilian leadership.

When Americans talk about the competence of any kind of organization, they are naturally talking first and foremost about the leadership. When a team plays bad, the coach gets fired. When profits don’t meet expectations, the CEO gets fired. When a president doesn’t do a good job running a war, he says he will not seek nor accept his party’s nomination in the next election.

Nice try though. But your attempt to characterize Americans’ questions about competence generally as simply a failure to understand the institution of the military doesn’t make sense. It is, however, just another lame attempt to get create the impression that those who dare to question Bush’s competence must "hate the troops."

Bush and his crew are running this war. It will take years before Iraq will have a workable army. The political process is going backwards.
The Sunnis are more desparate than ever. The Shia are divided and at each others’ throats (that’s when they aren’t increasingly imposing Sharia law). An Iraq with a weak central government and a theocratic veto (if we ever get there) will distabilize the region. If that’s competence, I don’t think we can stand any more.

Americans aren’t as stupid as you make them out to be. You attribute their opinions to ignorance. I attribute them to information.

 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
Missing the point

I’m missing the point? It’s obvious, by your comment, you don’t even understand the point of the article, much less the benefit of missing it.

But your attempt to characterize Americans’ questions about competence generally as simply a failure to understand the institution of the military doesn’t make sense.

Well, since that’s not what I said, I’d agree it doesn’t make sense.

Americans aren’t as stupid as you make them out to be. You attribute their opinions to ignorance. I attribute them to information.

Actually yours is the only opinion I attribute to ignorance, and predictably, you display your ignorance daily, much to the delight (and entertainment) of those who read this blog.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/

just 48% believe that success is likely. In fact, just 13% say achieving stability in Iraq is "very likely."
So 61% of Americans believe success in Iraq is likely or very likely. This doesn’t seem to mesh with a consensus that this administration is viewed to be incompetant wrt Iraq.
 
Written By: h0mi
URL: http://
The problem: too few Michael Yon’s embedded with the troops.
 
Written By: Al Reasin
URL: http://
This doesn’t seem to mesh with a consensus that this administration is viewed to be incompetant wrt Iraq.

Well first I’m dubious of any "consensus" concerning that, but the fact that a majority of Americans see success as likely or very likely doesn’t rule out that they may also believe that we’ll succeed despite our incompetence (whether true or perceived).
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
The problem: too few Michael Yon’s embedded with the troops.

His latest piece is incredible.

But yes, that’s part of it. And another part is there are very few in the MSM who’ve bothered to make themselves "experts" in military matters. They hire in the ex-generals when they’re needed, but other than that, essentially ignore the institution.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
Yes, there are indeed those who are against the war and want a training ground for terrorists who want to kill them, especially if it means the US fails and Bush fails as well.
Now you got yourself wrapped around the axle.

I was against the war. Let’s say that Bush had been rational and not gone to war. What would Iraq look like now? It would probably look about the same as it did in March of ’03. And unless you belong to the lunatic fringe that thinks that before the war al qaeda was headquartered in Baghdad and Iraq was so overrun with terrorist camps that it made Afghanistan look tame by comparison, Iraq in March of ’03 was nowhere near the training ground for terrorists that it is now.

So I was against the war - the war being the very thing that caused Iraq to be ground zero for terrorist training. But according to you McQ, my opposition to the war isn’t proof that I didn’t want Iraq to become a terrorist traning ground. It is the opposite. Being against the war means that I did want Iraq to become a terrorist traning ground.

It’s as clear as mud now - thanks for the clarification. BTW, do you really believe this or are you just playing with me?
Ah, you’re back to believing the military again. Wow, I wish you’d make up your mind. First they’re liars, then they’re the gold standard.

Agendas do that to a person like you, don’t they?
If you’ve noticed, I believe the commanded, you believe the commanders. You seem to do the opposite. And if Vietnam taught us one thing, ....

No - I don’t believe a lot of the propaganda coming from the honchos at Centcom. Given their track record over the last couple years, why would you?
 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
But your attempt to characterize Americans’ questions about competence generally as simply a failure to understand the institution of the military doesn’t make sense.

Well, since that’s not what I said, I’d agree it doesn’t make sense.
Here we go again with the "I didn’t say that" defense.

Here is what you said:
The MSM has very little knowledge, institutionally, of how the military operates. It doesn’t understand, and consequently, it is unable to connect the dots and lay out the context necessary to portray the war as anything other than a daily body count.

So when the "incompetence" charges fly again, keep this in mind. We know who’s being charged with incompetence, but is it really that institution or another to which the charge really belongs?
You say here the MSM has little knowledge of the military. Therefore the public has very little knowledge. Then you said, keep this in mind as charges of incompetence fly.

Now, it seems very safe to say that you want me to keep this ignorance in mind because you think it explains why Americans have concerns about competence. You characterize these concerns as being related to their failure to understand the military as an institution.

In other words, it’s exaclty what you said. And you know it.

I only go through with this tedious exercise because the "Well, I didn’t say that" tactic is really getting old. You need a new, standard comeback. How about: "I could explain why you are wrong, but I don’t have the time." I’ll let you know when that gets old.
 
Written By: mkultra
URL: http://
So I was against the war - the war being the very thing that caused Iraq to be ground zero for terrorist training. But according to you McQ, my opposition to the war isn’t proof that I didn’t want Iraq to become a terrorist traning ground.

Good lord, would you do everyone a favor and take a class in remedial reading?
Yes, there are indeed those who are against the war and want a training ground for terrorists who want to kill them, especially if it means the US fails and Bush fails as well.
"there are ... those" may have been to complicated (or nuanced) for you, so let me simplify for you ... "there are SOME"...

If you’re one of them, then yes, "according to McQ" you don’t care if Iraq becomes a training ground for terrorists as long as Bush fails. If you’re not one of those who feels that way, but oppose the war, well, guess what, then your not one of them. The qualifier was used to differentiate between the anti-war types.

Christ, my 7 year old grandson has better command of the language than you do. And a better ability to reason as well.

Go burn your straw men elsewhere, will you?
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
The bulb grows dimmer:

Here we go again with the "I didn’t say that" defense.

Here is what you said:

The MSM has very little knowledge, institutionally, of how the military operates. It doesn’t understand, and consequently, it is unable to connect the dots and lay out the context necessary to portray the war as anything other than a daily body count.

So when the "incompetence" charges fly again, keep this in mind. We know who’s being charged with incompetence, but is it really that institution or another to which the charge really belongs?


That’s right, and here’s what you said:
Nice try though. But your attempt to characterize Americans’ questions about competence generally as simply a failure to understand the institution of the military doesn’t make sense. It is, however, just another lame attempt to get create the impression that those who dare to question Bush’s competence must "hate the troops."
Show me where what you said talks about the MSM.

You can’t because obviously it doesn’t.

I said nothing about "Americans’ questions about competence ... as a failure to undertand the military". I didn’t question the ability of Americans to understand the military at all. I questioned the ability of the MSM.

I said that the MSM as an institution didn’t understand the military and thus couldn’t competently report on what the military was doing.

Speaking of competence, another in a long line of examples of your extremely poor reading comprehension.

Look, if you can’t do any better than this, go bother the moonbats at Kos, will you? They read and comprehend at about the same level as you do. You guys could keep each other entertained for hours I’m sure.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
Captain Green hosts a site on which he provides his thoughts and experiences while in Iraq. I can’t find the quotes provided by MK’s link to DefenseTech.org anywhere on Dr. Green’s site (maybe I missed it somewhere). Reading through the site, as well as reviewing the work of reporters who have mentioned him, Green seems to think the Americans are helping the Iraqis, though he does point out where there are ongoing problems. I’d be careful about using him as a reference for immediate withdrawal.
 
Written By: JWG
URL: http://
I would try to make my comment clever, but the inspiration just isn’t there on the subject of MK. I admire your forbearance and I agree that you should perhaps go the extra mile with commenters, but.....

Did I ever mention I have 4 grandsons, all under the age of 9 and have developed the patience of Job?

I mostly do ignore MK, but when he starts erecting his straw men on my post, I’m going to at least set the record straight.

Not to worry, he usually does exactly what he perscribes for the US in Iraq: cut and run.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
I think it’s a great contrast to see how many reporters put themselves in massive harms way to report the hurricane, as opposed to the reporters who generally never leave the hotel in Iraq, claiming it’s dangerous.

Nice to know they have their priorities correct
 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
McQ:

Just wanted to voice a little dissent here. Some of us do not find MKU amusing, delightful or entertaining.
 
Written By: Lurking Observer
URL: http://
I think you’re being far too kind to the media, McQ.

The media is doing this deliberately, just as deliberately as they misreported the Tet offensive. Why? Because the media wants us to lose.

Now, I’m not saying the media hates America or suports the terrorists or anything silly like that. Far from it. As in Vietnam, the press’ treachery is quite noble and well-intentioned. They believe that losing in Iraq will teach America a lesson it needs to learn. From their perspective, Iraq (like their perception of Vietnam) was always an "unwinnable"
lost cause, so by helping us lose faster they’re actually doing a good thing, and anyway nothing short of a humiiating will fix the horrible militaristic flaws they perceive in our foreign policy.

 
Written By: TallDave
URL: http://semirandomramblings.blogspot.com
You know, in all the confusion, I forgot something ’til TallDave reminded me.

People like Michael Moore regularly remind us that not only did Dick Cheney not serve in Vietnam, but only a small percentage of our elected officials have children in Iraq, Afghanistan, or the military.

The press also reports that those with families in Iraq/Afghanistan tend to support the war effort.

So, I’d be genuinely curious: How many members of the press have children/family members in the military? For those that do, does it alter their support for the war, or perceptions that the war is successful?

Here’s the real kicker: If you think a policy is a bad idea, and you have no personal stake in the outcome, and you have the ability to influence the outcome, would you use said ability to avert said policy?

Think this applies to the press at all?
 
Written By: Lurking Observer
URL: http://
Mr Tiresome:
The incompetence issue is not about the media or the military. It is about the civilian leadership, i.e., BushCo. You might forget, but in this country the military is still subservient to the civilian leadership.
Ohhhhh good point MK, so run out and get us a new president, won’t you? And hurry it up, because we need one Right Away! Golly, if only we’d thought of this 8 or 9 months ago.
 
Written By: Stoop Davy Dave
URL: http://
TallDave:
They believe that losing in Iraq will teach America a lesson it needs to learn. From their perspective, Iraq (like their perception of Vietnam) was always an "unwinnable" lost cause, so by helping us lose faster they’re actually doing a good thing, and anyway nothing short of a humiiating will fix the horrible militaristic flaws they perceive in our foreign policy.
That’s RIDICULOUS AND CRAZY!!
Hm.
You know what? It’s also probably right. It sure sounds right. I’m swoggled if I can think of a better explanation.
 
Written By: Stoop Davy Dave
URL: http://
Wow, McQ. You really do draw some flies here.

Think about what LLLs like "mk" are saying: "Iraq would be better off with Saddam." They say this despite Saddam’s internal killing sprees, despite ALL that we’ve learned (and will continue to learn) about Oil for Food and how Saddam was gradually buying his way out of sanctions, at which point, according to many knowledgeable people, he had the intention and the infrastructure to ratchet up his quest for more WMDs, despite all the other corruption at the UN... Despite all this, Iraq (and, by extension) the rest of the world, would be better off with Saddam.

And because we can’t do EVERYTHING in every humanitarian crisis in the world, we should do NOTHING. Anywhere. Anytime. Any place.

I thought it was the Repugs who were the isolationists and had no "compassion"...

The intellectual and moral bankruptcy on the Left is astounding.

 
Written By: JABBER
URL: http://
I find it ludicrous that MK references a Surgeon as a military expert. Military surgeons are probably least military of all MOS’s in the military. They get the most minimal military training of all MOS’s. They get absolutely NO training on military strategies or tactics and are never briefed as to the “mission” . So basically this guys screed is meaningless and worthless as an opinion of the "military".

 
Written By: McQ2
URL: http://nukethebabywhales.gov
I find it ludicrous that MK references a Surgeon as a military expert.

Don’t be surprised. It simply illustrates how little MK undertands about the military as well.

Military doc’s are great folks, but they’re clueless about what’s going on around them in terms of the military in general. MK has been watching too many episodes of MASH (or maybe China Beach).
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
I hear the "lack of competance" screed all the time, but fail to see any case where "more competence" would have lead to a different outcome than we’re having now. That doesn’t mean there were never mistakes, but overall competance has been brilliant. The retired generals who wanted 500,000 troops there are like the Admirals of the 1930’s that insisted that the Battlship was the only weapon that was able defeat the Japanese. The ways of war have moved beyond them.



How specifically would more "competentence" have significantly altered/reduced the 30 month time line from Invasion to Constitution?



Invasion to "Mission Accomplished" 2 months.

Return of Soverignty, Interim Constitution and Interim Government 13 months.

Soverignty to first national elections, 7 months.

First national elections to written Constitution 8 months.



What would/could have happened faster/better/less conflict/fewer casualties/etc.., etc.? Especially in the face of such overwhelming sniping and ankle biting of the Dems and MSM. Seems to me that competence is an issue about which MSM, LLL, Marxists, Defeatists, Ne’er do wells, etc. have to do a little navel gazing.
 
Written By: Abu Qa’ Qa
URL: http://
I think it’s a great contrast to see how many reporters put themselves in massive harms way to report the hurricane, as opposed to the reporters who generally never leave the hotel in Iraq, claiming it’s dangerous.

Nice.
Never leaving the hotel claiming it’s dangerous. LOL
Yea, that’s it. It’s all a big hoax. It’s really peaches and cream in Iraq. You’re right people, it’s the media who’s out to get you. Reporting all of the false hazards in Iraq is really a big ruse. After all, they obviously don’t report the fact that many vehicles in Iraq don’t explode.

Because the media wants us to lose.

(chuckle),
Yea, keep it up boys. It’s bound to work sooner or later.

They believe that losing in Iraq will teach America a lesson it needs to learn.

What a bunch of useless tripe. Do you really believe that the MSM, conceited and egocentric as they may be, is deliberately trying to defeat our efforts in Iraq?
Oh I know, those bastards sitting in their comfortable chairs behind a keyboard who know nothing about the real facts in Iraq writing criticism about those who do.

…Sound familiar?...

…It does to me.

I don’t claim to know everything about the current conditions in Iraq, but I do KNOW one thing. The troubles in Iraq have nothing to do with the competency of the media.

You useless, partisan morons.
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
I don’t claim to know everything about the current conditions in Iraq, but I do KNOW one thing. The troubles in Iraq have nothing to do with the competency of the media.

You useless, partisan morons.


You can’t claim to know ANYTHING about the current conditions in Iraq but those fed to you by the MSM.

That’s sort of the point you see. And, of course, you feel they competently present what’s going on militarily in Iraq, I suppose.

Heh ... you shouldn’t talk about morons ... really.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
You can’t claim to know ANYTHING about the current conditions in Iraq but those fed to you by the MSM.

And what I read here at QandO, McQ.

...you feel they competently present what’s going on militarily in Iraq, I suppose.

For the most part. I mean, who else do I have to rely on? The administration? Right.


Heh ... you shouldn’t talk about morons ... really.

And why the hell not, McQ? Do you believe that the MSM wants us to fail? Do you believe that the media claims that venturing outside the hotes is hazardous?

Really. Do you? Do you think it’s a big ruse to cause the downfall of the military?
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Do you believe that the MSM wants us to fail?

Did I say I did in the piece? I certainly think there are certainly parts of the media who’d be perfectly fine with it if we did. But I won’t indict the entire media, no.

Do you believe that the media claims that venturing outside the hotes is hazardous?

Actually yes. That was published in Editor and Publisher piece in a FAQ which some media organization gave out about how they covered Iraq because they claim it is too dangerous to venture out into Iraq and thus most reporters stay in the Green Zone and near their hotels.

You’d think by staying in the Green Zone some of what the military does might rub off and show up in their writing.

Do you think it’s a big ruse to cause the downfall of the military?

Did I say I did in the piece?

Look Pogue, the MSM isn’t blameless in this. They could do a MUCH BETTER job than they’re doing, running from IED to IED. Part of that would be getting people on staff who know how the military operates, what it does and how it does it.

Until they do and until they can write about the war competently, no one who looks to them for the complete story can be assured they’re getting it.

But it seems silly to call people "partisan morons" when they claim MSM bias, especially when both sides make such claims.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
Did I say I did in the piece?

No you didn’t, which is why I did not pull quotes from your piece.

…and thus most reporters stay in the Green Zone and near their hotels.

Yes, well, can you blame them? Look, McQ, Shark’s comment about being brave enough to venture out into a hurricane but yet “they” claim that venturing out into Iraq is too dangerous was beyond the call, you must admit.

And more to my point. Blaming the media for the troubles in Iraq is pointless and blaming the media for public perception is pointless. Even if you believe that a particular network or newspaper isn’t diligent enough, isn’t impartial enough, or just isn’t competent enough, it really means f*** all doesn’t it? After all, isn’t it the JOB of the administration to LEAD us??? Isn’t it the JOB of the administration to provide every ounce of information it possibly can, without compromising security of course, along with a free press to assure us accountability? I know that the good folks here at QandO have criticized the administration for not stepping up and providing a clear and concise raison d’être, but not enough in my humble opinion. And these jokers who claim about the media that, “They believe that losing in Iraq will teach America a lesson it needs to learn.”, are doing nothing but foolishly speculating about persons whom they have no personal knowledge of and that are competing in a free market industry. Yea, I can confidently call them morons.

Besides, what else have we got? Fox News? They’re definitely brave enough to venture to the hostile isle of Aruba, aren’t they? And could you do better, McQ? (actually, I believe you could.)

But it seems silly to call people "partisan morons" when they claim MSM bias, especially when both sides make such claims.

And to claim that “Because the media wants us to lose.” is not silly? Yet, I didn’t see you call that out. Maybe you haven’t gotten around to it yet? And as far as both sides making such claims; well, I can confidently point to “partisan morons” on all sides.

Cheers
 
Written By: PogueMahone
URL: http://
Yes, well, can you blame them?

Not really, but it certainly makes the point.

Look, McQ, Shark’s comment about being brave enough to venture out into a hurricane but yet “they” claim that venturing out into Iraq is too dangerous was beyond the call, you must admit.

Why? We just both agreed that many don’t leave their hotels.

Look, Iraq is dangerous, but if you’re going to report on it properly, you have to get out in it.

Blaming the media for the troubles in Iraq is pointless and blaming the media for public perception is pointless. Even if you believe that a particular network or newspaper isn’t diligent enough, isn’t impartial enough, or just isn’t competent enough, it really means f*** all doesn’t it?

Actually it means a hell of a lot, since it is through that medium which pereceptions of what’s going on are formed by the public. If they’re formed on half-assed and incomplete information, then a skewed perception is possible, and that may lead to the public demanding an action which is not in our best interest.

After all, isn’t it the JOB of the administration to LEAD us???

Yeah, but it doesn’t print the newspapers or chair the telecasts, does it?

Isn’t it the JOB of the administration to provide every ounce of information it possibly can, without compromising security of course, along with a free press to assure us accountability?

The DoD issues tons of press releases a day. Ever read Cherenkoff? That’s where a majority of his "good news" comes from. The same stuff is available to the MSM. Ever see it reported?

Point: the administration can do it’s JOB until the cows come home, but if the MSM doesn’t relay it, its rather pointless, isn’t it?

And yes, the MSM should be skeptical and they should check them out before they publish the information they contain ... but not even that is going on.

Besides, what else have we got? Fox News? They’re definitely brave enough to venture to the hostile isle of Aruba, aren’t they? And could you do better, McQ? (actually, I believe you could.)

I know I could, Pogue ... I actually know how the military works. That in and of itself would make my reporting better.

And to claim that “Because the media wants us to lose.” is not silly? Yet, I didn’t see you call that out. Maybe you haven’t gotten around to it yet? And as far as both sides making such claims; well, I can confidently point to “partisan morons” on all sides.

As I said, I don’t agree with the "media wants us to lose" wing. They’re entitled to their opinion, but most folks dismiss it without me having to take them to task.

But we do agree on one thing ... there are partisan morons on both sides.
 
Written By: McQ
URL: http://www.qando.net/
Robert Fulton, that ungrateful swine:
McQ: I believe that you know the old story about the young boy and the smart pills. When are you going to start ignoring MK? I would try to make my comment clever, but the inspiration just isn’t there on the subject of MK. I admire your forbearance and I agree that you should perhaps go the extra mile with commenters, but.....
1/ What IS the story about the young boy and the smart pills?
2/ I get to most of these threads pretty late, and am always glad to see when mkultra’s crapulations have been already fisked by McQ, et.al., before I get here. Saves me the trouble of doing it myself, don’cha know.
 
Written By: Stoop Davy Dave
URL: http://

 
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