Re: Under Our Noses


Yeah, the U.S. insistence that these are not permanent bases is becoming increasingly absurd. Spack had a good article about it a while back.

Posted by: Matt F | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 10:31 AM
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Coalition Provisional Authority my ass. Every one of those three words is full of shit.

Posted by: Jackmormon | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 10:35 AM
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I always wonder about those supermarkets and fast food restaurants. Are they staffed by low-rung military personnel, or by Halliburton-style contractors, or by plain old McDonald's employees, sitting there flipping burgers in the middle of this monstrous permanent military base?

Posted by: strasmangelo jones | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 10:46 AM
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3: I was under the impression they were staffed by near-slave wage contractors from the Philippines and Pakistan and so on, like the rest of the scut jobs there. Maybe I'm wrong.

Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 11:05 AM
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The piece linked in 1 is an excellent read, if totally depressing. I'm left wondering to what extent it was part of the plan from the beginning. Spackerman writes:

According to interviews with senior U.S. commanders with extensive Iraq experience, the Pentagon had never drawn up any plans for a long-term military presence in Iraq. In fact, Donald Rumsfeld actually threatened to fire any officer who took steps to prepare for the aftermath of the invasion, according to a recent statement from a former deputy to General Tommy Franks
Which rings true given the post-invasion chaos, but it seems inconceivable that Cheney, with his high-level government and Halliburton experience, didn't recognize the possibilities well before the invasion.

At any rate, it makes Eisenhower's warning sound awfully quaint. "In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex"? Baaaahahahaha! Good luck with that, sucker.

Posted by: Jesus McQueen | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 11:39 AM
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immunity for over 300,000 foreign personnel; and continuing, direct authority over and access to Iraqi detainees.

My recollection is that this is a not insignificant part of what got the Brits, and then us, fucked in Iran. I bet it works better this time, though.

Posted by: SomeCallMeTim | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 11:47 AM
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Of course it was the plan from the beginning. It still amazes me how much credibility people gave to Ricks & Packer etc, who thought quotes, from named or unnamed sources, had anything to do with reality. People lie.

If Rumsfeld said "We aren't staying" while building huge bases, somehow the story became:"There was no plan for extended occupation."


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 11:53 AM
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The piece linked in 1 is an excellent read

It is. Details about the logistical issues in withdrawing at this point -- a "BRAC for Iraq" -- are particularly interesting.

Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 12:30 PM
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I would be very surprised if the contractor-employee situation was different in Balad from, say, Guantanamo or Djibouti.

Except that Iraq, unlike Gitmo, might have a minimum wage.

Posted by: Napi | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 1:05 PM
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The whole "no permanent bases" thing has ot be one of the worst-covered aspects of the war, and that is saying a lot. And in the end it is just like the freaking Downing Street Memos, when it is finally acknowledged, the political press yawns, "This is news? We/ve known this for years." But somehow they just never got around to informing us.

Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 11:49 PM
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Weirdest googleproofing ever.

Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 02- 9-08 11:58 PM
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You don't want to fuck around with Steve and Dennis, Sifu.

Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 02-10-08 12:18 AM
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You don't want to fuck around with Steve and Dennis, Sifu

Especially because their "TOP COOL SITE" was "Just Google for it, They will find it for you!"

I guess the secret is finally out.

Posted by: Knecht Ruprecht | Link to this comment | 02-10-08 7:30 AM
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We didn't give Okinawa back to the Japanese until the 1972, and we still have large Air Force and and Marine bases there. If you asked in 1946 how long we would be there, the answer would have been "a few years". (scroll down for pictures from 1946)

Posted by: Tassled Loafered Leech | Link to this comment | 02-11-08 9:45 AM
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