Thursday, May 27, 2004

Day of False Reckonings

Ah, New York Times finally felt like apologising. Without naming, hell not naming firing Judith Miller. Without a word about the sins of omission, for example a little historical backup about the end of the 1998 inspections. Oh, and the best irony was highlighted by the Editor&Publisher:

One of the false Miller and Gordon stories (touting the now-famous "aluminum tubes")did contain a few qualifiers, but they were "buried deep." When the pair followed up five days later they did report some misgivings by others, but these too "appeared deep in the article." When the Times finally gave "full voice" to skeptics the challenge was reported on Page A 10, but "it might well have belonged on Page A 1."

Of course, the same could be said of their note today, which also falls on Page A 10.

Meanwhile, Richard Perle recasts himself as an Occupation sceptic:

Richard Perle, until recently a powerful adviser to U.S. Defence Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, described U.S. policy in post-war Iraq as a failure.

"I would be the first to acknowledge we allowed the liberation (of Iraq) to subside into an occupation. And I think that was a grave error, and in some ways a continuing error," said Perle, former chair of the influential Defence Policy Board, which advises the Pentagon.

With violent resistance to the U.S.-led occupation showing no signs of ending, Perle said the biggest mistake in post-war policy "was the failure to turn Iraq back to the Iraqis more or less immediately.

"We didn't have to find ourselves in the role of occupier. We could have made the transition that is going to be made at the end of June more or less immediately," he told BBC radio, referring to the U.S. and British plan to transfer political authority in Iraq to an interim government on June 30.

I decode him for ya': Perle wanted Iraq to be turned over to Chalabi immediately after the outser of Saddam. Furthermore, he never wanted nation building in Iraq (unlike Wolfowitz - even neocons aren't all the same), he would have been fully content with Iraq falling apart into tribal fiefdoms.

Which would have been no match to Israel.

This is not some anti-semitic/anti-Israel/anti-neocon paranoia. This is something he laid out quite clearly himself. In the strategic study he made for then-Premier Benjamin Netanyahu titled Clean Break eight years ago.

Special disclaimer for the benefit of anti-conspiracy-nutter nutters: there is no conspiracy here, Perle's pro-Israeli-far-right views are in the public domain, as are his lunatic proposals, and no I don't believe he represents any larger group of people or indeed anyone but his own lunatic self.


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