Get ready for the next Iraq stall tactic, designed to win another Friedman Unit (6 months) or two: a diplomatic “surge.”
New US ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker finds his staff
With a 2007 budget of more than $1 billion and a staff that has expanded to more than 1,000 Americans and 4,000 third-country nationals
to be inadequate and incompetent, and bound by impossible rules. Incredible, yet typical.
Crocker, in the interview, said the human resources department does not have the capacity to make sure the best people are placed in Baghdad. “They can’t do this,” he said, whereas the Near East bureau, which oversees Baghdad, has the skills to “identify the right people with the right skill sets.” State Department officials acknowledge that hiring has been haphazard, but a team has been set up in the Near East bureau to work with the personnel department.
Secretary Rice should resign. But she won’t. Instead, her incompetence will become the next excuse for another 6 months in Iraq. The military/political effort in Iraq had failed, so Bush gave us the surge and Petraeus, and sqeezed 1.5 more Friedman Units out of that. The September report, we already know, will be Petraeus praising Petraeus, but will otherwise be pretty weak, since absolutely none of the objectives have been accomplished. The diplomatic failures are the clearest, since either a bill is passed or it isn’t.
Of course Iraq is a diplomatic disaster. The College Republicans who were recruited after the invasion were unqualified and incompetent. They viewed Iraq as a virtual sandbox, an experiment in unbridled capitalism. They screwed the pooch. See the film “No End in Sight.” Nowadays an assignment to Iraq is a punishment of the highest order, given as a message to some non-loyal Bushie that he should resign before he finds that his next assigned office has a small white porcelain “chair.”
So now we get Crocker, and now HE needs a “surge.” Everything Bush has said about Petraeus on the military side, he will now say about Crocker on the diplomatic side: “confirmed by Congress…, give him a chance,… you wanted change…I changed…, blah blah blah blah BLAH, I have ordered….recruitment and training will take six months……evaluate progress in September 2008….yadda, yadda…”
Meanwhile, the tragedy will continue.