Thursday, April 29, 2004

First it was General Zinni... 

...now the brass are coming out of the woodwork to condemn the Iraq War. From Lou Dobbs' show on CNN, via blah3.com:

DOBBS: My next guest says the United States has failed in Iraq and it should leave immediately. General William Odom directed the National Security Agency under President Reagan, served on President Carter's National Security Council. He is the co-author of a new book called "America's Inadvertent Empire."

And General Odom joins us tonight from Washington, D.C.

General, good to have you with us.


DOBBS: There are many people who know you, who have great respect for your service to the nation, including your military service, who are shocked that you would say, it's time to withdraw from Iraq. Why have you -- how have you come to that conclusion?

ODOM: Well, I reached the conclusion before we went in that it was not in the U.S. interest.

And I actually -- I didn't publish anything. But I at least said to people who asked me that the issue wasn't whether we would be greeted as liberators when we came in, but how we would be treated six months after we're there. And the idea that we could create a constitutional regime that would be pro-U.S. in a short period of time there struck me as pure fantasy.

I must say, I found it hard to believe that the administration internally could make that argument convincingly to themselves. And I've just sort of been quiet since. But it seems now there is enough evidence where I can at least say not that I told you so, but that it really doesn't pay -- I would like very much to be wrong on this, but I don't see how it pays the United States to continue to go down this path.

And to understand that, you have to really I think analyze it at the Iraqi level, the regional level and particularly they international European level.

DOBBS: Well, let's talk about it, if we may, first, from the standpoint -- there are those who will be listening to you say this and say, my God, we've got to support our troops. Irrespective of the ultimate strategic decision about withdrawal and at what point or whether we achieve success and at what point. Are you concerned about this kind of discussion first and foremost having an impact on American troops in Iraq?

ODOM: The word I've heard from what was written about me in the "Wall Street Journal" is that the troops seem to like it, or at least the ones who I have. You know, the troops are not dumb about this business. They were not very happy, if you remember. Some of them even spoke out, naming the secretary of defense last year about his policy there.

And because we have vastly too few army troops to do what the administration wants to do over there, they're really feeling the pain. So I don't think this kind of discussion would create that reaction among the troops. In fact, quite the contrary.


This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?

Weblog Commenting by HaloScan.com