Thursday, October 20, 2005

Condi Lies with the Great Ones

Man, that Condi Rice is one great improvisational liar. If she were a drummer, she’d be Buddy Rich. If she played a horn, she’d be Charlie Parker.

We all knew Condi had arrived as a trickster when she stood calmly in front of the Nine-Eleven Commission and said nobody in national security ever dreamed hijackers might fly planes into buildings.

But she really stepped into her own at her recent testimony before Congress. With a face fairly beaming with sincerity and honesty, she told some major league whoppers. My favorite was that the key to success in Iraq is to follow the Afghanistan Model

In many ways, it appeared the U.S. was already applying the Afghan model in Iraq. The basic model is this:

1. Invade as violently as possible, using the most destructive weapons ever manufactured short of nuclear bombs. To make the point, kill thousands of civilians. Be sure to bomb at least one wedding.

2. Drive the existing government into hiding.

3. Declare victory and install a CIA asset as the new national leader.

4. Sit back and watch increasing chaos, murder, and civil war ensue.

5. Build an economy based on the opium trade

6. Start looking around for the next country to ruin

But that’s not Condi’s model. Instead, she sees the U.S. military helping rebuild the Iraqi homes, hospitals, schools, factories, and plumbing that they spent the past fourteen years demolishing. That, along with democracy and security-training would be the keys to “decisive victory.” [1]

And it might well be, though it is news to me that it’s being done in Afghanistan. The physical reconstruction there is nothing to brag about, at least according to Margaret Coker and Ann Usher. The title of their recent article for the Austin-American Statesman sums it up well: “Four years later, much U.S. aid in Afghanistan has had little impact.”
Their article cites such examples as an American re-built school that is already crumbling apart. And they quote a July ’05 Government Accounting Office report as follows: “U.S. agencies fell short of most of their own [construction] targets and misrepresented their progress to decision-makers in Washington.” [2]

Democracy is taking its lumps there, too. The day before Rice recommended the “Afghanistan Model,” a Berlin-based group called Transparency International released its “2005 Corruption Perceptions Index.” Afghanistan scored 2.5 out of 10, putting it “among the most corrupt countries in the world” and the single most corrupt of all the former Soviet Republics [3].

The very same day, a human rights group warned that Afghan warlords were rapidly infiltrating the country’s government. Afghanistan officially bans “anyone with links to armed groups” [4] from running for office. And yet – get this:

"More than 80 percent of winning candidates in provinces and more than 60 percent in the capital Kabul have links to armed groups." [4]

On the other hand, Condi may have figured that some of the bad news about Afghanistan is in the past and no longer relevant. Heck, it has been a full two months since we learned that more American soldiers had already been killed in Afganistan in 2005 than in any year since the 2001 invasion [5].

In any event, the “Afghanistan Model” sums up everything new that Condi had to offer. But she said it as if she really meant it, and for all we know, maybe she really did.


[2] ]





At 3:39 PM, Blogger yesimjustagirl said...

Leave it to ol G-love to break it down!


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