'Intelligent discontent is the mainspring of civilization.' -- Eugene V. Debs

Monday, September 20, 2004

The Wit and Wisdom of Donald Rumsfeld 

Rumsfeld had the following to say at a recent appearance:

I’m very encouraged about it. I think that the United States and the coalition countries, of course unlike, other countries we have no desire to stay there or to be there at all other than to help that country get on it’s feet. We’re in the processing of doing that and they’re making good progress politically. They’re making progress economically. The schools are open. The hospitals are open. They have a stock market functioning. They sent some teams to the Olympics. They have a symphony and at the same time, amidst all those good things that are happening, people are being killed. Iraqis are being killed, as they were yesterday and the day before. At some point the Iraqis will get tired of getting killed and we’ll have enough of the Iraqi security forces that they can take over responsibility for governing that country and we’ll be able to pare down the coalition security forces in the country.

Um ... I'm pretty sure Iraqis are already tired of getting killed, but I could be wrong.

Furthermore, all jokiness aside, the claim that the US has "no desire to stay" in Iraq is an outright lie. Setting up permanent secure military bases near the world's biggest reserves of oil was one of the major actual motives for the Iraq adventure. For example CNN reported the following in April of 2003:

The Bush administration wants ongoing access to military bases in Iraq but acknowledges that any access agreement would have to be negotiated with whatever government emerges, a senior military official told CNN.

This development, first reported in The New York Times, is part of a larger expected administration and Pentagon review of future U.S. military presence in the region, the official said.

[ ... ]

All of this is likely to become part of a broader Defense Department and administration review of the U.S. military presence throughout the region. With the regime of Saddam Hussein gone and Iraq no longer a presumed threat to Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, the U.S. military presence in those two countries likely would diminish.

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