Bushco Out of the Military Loop?

Reply Sat 1 May, 2004 05:02 am
Fallujah accord leaves US policy in disarray

THE United States' policy on Iraq was in disarray last night, as the Pentagon admitted it was unaware of a breakthrough agreement to end the siege of Fallujah announced by its troops on the ground.

While a new poll showed a majority of Iraqis want US and British troops to leave in the next few months, an American marine commander revealed that his troops were preparing to withdraw from the outskirts of Fallujah, a major U-turn in US policy.

Lieutenant Colonel Brennan Byrne said a newly created Iraqi force of 1,100 soldiers, called the Fallujah Protective Army and led by a former general from Saddam Hussein's army, would take over security in the besieged city.

It was a deal few of his superiors seemed aware of.

In Washington, Larry Di Rita, the chief Pentagon spokesman, said: "There's no deal that we're aware of." He added that he could not rule out that an agreement was in place, but said that officials at the US military command in Baghdad told him they could not confirm a final deal was sealed.

In Washington, Paul Wolfowitz, the US deputy defence secretary, said the situation in Fallujah was confusing but a deal was being worked on.

To add to the sense of disarray, US marines to the south of Fallujah were yesterday packing up their kit and destroying earthworks in apparent preparation for withdrawal. Yet elsewhere in the city, airstrikes were being launched against insurgent positions and gunfire could be heard last night.

The marines' siege of Fallujah is the most controversial military action undertaken by coalition forces since the end of the war....Sunni and Shiite communities alike have expressed their anger at the US tactics, and members of the coalition-appointed Iraqi Governing Council have threatened to resign if the fighting continues. Confirmation of the coalition's unpopularity came yesterday, with the publication of a poll which showed that, despite concerns about their own safety, the majority of Iraqis say they want the US and British troops now in Iraq to leave within the next few months.

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Reply Sun 2 May, 2004 02:14 am
Are you "pistoff" about what happened on September 11, 2001? Are you "pistoff" that terrorists recently attempted to kill 80,000 people in Jordan, using WMD from Syria?

You liberals need to direct your anger in the right place! If you would have helped to go after Bin Laden the way you've gone after Bush, we would have had him by now!
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Reply Sun 2 May, 2004 02:27 am
I tried to help when I called W and told him not to invade Iraq and keep going after Osoma and Al Q. but that dolt and Cheney wouldn't listen to me and a few million other people.

BTW try to address the topic, eh?

PS I am NOT a Liberal.
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Walter Hinteler
Reply Sun 2 May, 2004 02:32 am
paultheeggman, you are not going to label the "Scotsman" a liberal media, are you Laughing
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Reply Sun 2 May, 2004 04:37 am
paultheeggman wrote:
Are you "pistoff" about what happened on September 11, 2001? Are you "pistoff" that terrorists recently attempted to kill 80,000 people in Jordan, using WMD from Syria?

Gee, those terrorists have smart weapons lately. You teach the bomb to kill 80,000 people and it goes until mission is accomplished.
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Reply Sun 2 May, 2004 04:01 pm
Iraqis see chaos after U.S. hires Saddam generals

By Khaled Yacoub Oweis

BAGHDAD, May 2 (Reuters) -

Washington risks plunging Iraq into further chaos by employing Saddam Hussein generals to appease an anti-U.S. insurgency, Iraqi leaders once in the forefront of opposition to the ousted dictator said on Sunday.

U.S. forces turned to General Jasim Mohamed Saleh, who headed a battalion in the disbanded Republican Guards, and another Sunni Muslim general for help in pacifying Falluja after U.S. forces besieged the city west of Baghdad for nearly a month.

U.S. military leaders insist, however, Saleh has not been given control of Falluja.

While acknowledging that Saleh, from the Sunni Muslim Dulaimi tribe, could help calm Falluja, politicians and Governing Council members said Iraq would become more unstable in the longer run as the United States puts defeated Baath Party members back in senior positions.

"The Americans seem to think they are in a kitchen, constantly cooking a meal in which ingredients are thrown in until something works," said Hamid al-Bayati, a senior official in the Supreme Council for the Islamic Revolution in Iraq.

"They failed to defeat the Baathists so they hire Saddam's generals. They arm and prop up a police force, which they later discover is full of insurgents," Bayati told Reuters.

But U.S. military chiefs responded swiftly to suggestions they had put Saleh in charge of Falluja by saying he had not yet been vetted.

U.S. armed forces' senior commander, General Richard B. Myers, said he did not believe Saleh would be chosen to lead a peacekeeping operation in the city. He said a couple of people were being looked at.

"They have to be vetted in Baghdad by the Coalition Provisional Authority and by the Iraqi minister of defense. That process is not complete. There's another general they're looking at. My guess is, it will not be General Saleh," Myers, chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, told ABC's This Week programme.


Saleh's critics say he served in the Medina Division, entrusted with defending Baghdad. Saleh told Reuters on Sunday Saddam dismissed him from the army a month before the war and played down his brigade's role in keeping Saddam in power.

Saddam, who did not trust the regular army, elevated the Republican Guards into a praetorian guard which crushed Kurdish and Shi'ite uprisings. Bayati said Saleh would always be tainted by that connection in the eyes of Iraqis.

Republican Guards officers, especially those from Saddam's home region of Tikrit, abandoned Baghdad after the invasion, fearing reprisals by groups such as the Supreme Council.

U.S. governor Paul Bremer disbanded Iraq's 400,000-strong armed forces and security agencies last May along with the defence and information ministries.

Concern in the former opposition has been growing that the United States would include former members of Saddam's party in an interim government due to take power in July.

Governing Council member Ahmad Chalabi likened this possibility to the United States putting Nazis in charge of the German government immediately after a World War Two.

A senior U.S. official in Baghdad said, however, that just as senior officers in Hitler's army eventually had to be used to staff the reformed postwar German army, some Iraqi generals would have to be brought back.

Careful vetting would insure that "no one with blood on their hands" was appointed, the official said.

Chalabi and senior Shi'ite cleric Mohammad Bahr al-Uloum were among the signatories of a statement denouncing the U.S. decision to hire Saleh.

"The command of Saleh's brigade and many of its members repressed the people in the uprising of March 1991 and supported Saddam's regime throughout his dictatorial rule."

An official of the U.S.-led occupying authority said the "deBathification" policy remained solid.

AlertNet news is provided by Rueters

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Reply Sun 2 May, 2004 04:09 pm
welcome paultheeggman and congratulations on your graduating from the Dale Carnegie charm school......
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