T Nation

Bush Fails To Deliver Again


What is it with this guy? Can't he do anything right? What is the hold up? Sadly, another reason for conservatives to be disappointed...

Seven Countries in Five Years

While the Bush White House promotes the possibility of armed conflict with Iran, a tantalizing passage in Wesley Clark's new memoir suggests that another war is part of a long-planned Department of Defense strategy that anticipated "regime change" by force in no fewer than seven Mideast states. Critics of the war have often voiced suspicions of such imperial schemes, but this is the first time that a high-ranking former military officer has claimed to know that such plans existed.

The existence of that classified memo would certainly cast more dubious light not only on the original decision to invade Iraq because of Saddam Hussein's weapons and ambitions but on the current efforts to justify and even instigate military action against Iran.

In "A Time to Lead: For Duty, Honor and Country," published by Palgrave Macmillan last month, the former four-star general recalls two visits to the Pentagon following the terrorist attacks of September 2001. On the first visit, less than two weeks after Sept. 11, he writes, a "senior general" told him, "We're going to attack Iraq. The decision has basically been made."

Six weeks later, Clark returned to Washington to see the same general and inquired whether the plan to strike Iraq was still under consideration. The general's response was stunning:

"'Oh, it's worse than that,' he said, holding up a memo on his desk. 'Here's the paper from the Office of the Secretary of Defense [then Donald Rumsfeld] outlining the strategy. We're going to take out seven countries in five years.' And he named them, starting with Iraq and Syria and ending with Iran."


Memoirs from Wesley Clark? They couldn't be politically motivated, could they? Hell no not Wesley "I'll say anything to get elected" Clark.

Clark is a fucking douche. Believe him at your own peril.

But seeing that he is hating on Bush, you will fall lock step in behind him.

And you accuse others of sipping on kool-aid. You, my friend gulp the shit down like you are dying of thirst.


Let's see Rainjack, I see some "discredit" and then I see some "deflect and distract".

It's not about Wesley and it's not about me. It's about why Bush failed to clean out the whole region...


So he was a little ambitious.


We have contingency plans to invade every country on th planet.

It's not ambition - its good defense strategy.


Every country....then that would reek more like paranoia!


I say we collectively pinkie-swear not to vote for Bush in the next election.


Can we do that for Clinton while we're at it? And Adams for good measure? Roosevelt we can put a decent swear on; no need for a full on pinky swear.


Rest assured on my oath that I won't be voting for a Clinton in 2008.

That said, Wesley Clark has been popping up of late - giving interviews to DemocracyNow! (getting up his bona fides with Angry Left types) and also supporting Hillary and her strategic position on Iran (op-ed in NH paper).

I suspect Clark is angling for a cabinet position in the Clinton administration should she win.


Yeah, that was my guess too. He's also securing his book writing/speech giving future.


It's good OFFENSE strategy too!


Hmmm. A long-standing strategy eh? And when did Clark retire from the military, which would assumedly be the last time he had access to top-secret strategies?

I'll give you a hint: He didn't serve under Bush...

But apparently he was touring and some senior folks were just itching to show him classified memoranda?

So, if true, we can assume one of two possibilities is true: either it's been declassified because it's no longer being considered, or it's still classified and he is engaging in very criminal behavior.

But Clark himself, after maintaining he never read the memo, gives an idea of what it probably was; some contingency planning, the type the military is constantly engaging in, regarding all sorts of plausible and implausible (e.g., what if GB turned anti-U.S. and decided to invade?) scenarios.

From the article:

During the Blitzer interview, Clark backed off slightly, conceding that the memo "wasn't [necessarily] a plan. Maybe it was a think piece. Maybe it was a sort of notional concept, but what it was, was the kind of indication of dialogue around this town in official circles ... that has poisoned the atmosphere and made it very difficult for this administration to achieve any success in the region."

Or since he never read it, maybe the guy was joking with him - yanking his chain a little if he knew his politics. Who knows.

Just another excuse to rail against the "neocons."


Defense strategy - as in Department of Defense.


Are you seriously arguing semantics?


Excellent analysis, Boston - and it is quite clear Clark, who has trafficked in rumors before to instigate intrigue in the Beltway, is trying to get anti-war types on the Left to forget their charge that he is the man that tried to start World War III.


Regardless of T-dolts pat on the back, this is a trite little analysis.

If you want to call him a liar, that is great, I don't really care. He can be ambitious, he can be a liar, he can be vying for all sorts of political gain, that's all wonderful.

But as soon as your diatribe gets away from the personal attacks it really has nothing to say... strange how that works. Look, there are plenty of ways to postulate scenarios that support either left or right viewpoints.

Many cheesedicks will jump up and down and pat you on the back if you spin a scenario for them, well done, but that isn't the point.

The point is, WHY DIDN'T THEY GO FOR IT?


It's funny that while my "diatribe... really had nothing to say..." you had no particular point in your rebuttal. Strange how that works.

1) Clark wasn't authorized to see classified docs.
2) He claims he never read the alleged memo.
3) When pressed, Clark said it wasn't really a plan but more of a wargaming scenario (my paraphrase).

There was nothing to the story to begin with, irrespective of how many "cheesedicks" want to jump up and down about it.


Surely the irony of your post didn't pass you by?



ADDENDUM: this situation looks similar to Clark's "9/11 phone call" claim prior to his presidential campaign. The problem, of course, is absent substantive evidence - as Boston states, he never had access to the memo he is attesting to - his credibility to tell such a story becomes an issue. Should we believe Clark?

There are reasons to doubt him - Clark doesn't appear to be an honest broker. And it isn't unfair to think that Clark is trying to establish his anti-war chops with the Angry Left if he wants to be a part of a Democratic administration. The Angry Left - rightfully or wrongfully - accuse him of almost starting WW3 in the Balkans, and that makes him look like a "warmonger", like the hated Bush.

None of this speculation would be necessary if he could produce legitimate evidence, but as such, skeptics go looking for other explanations.


Aim high. Most of the middle east needs new governments. Who would disagree with this?


Semantics? We have invasion plans for every country on the planet, and have had for decades. It is what a strong military does.

Maybe you and vroom want to call it imperialist pig planning. Go ahead. But I can promise you that, regardless of who wins in 13 months, they will have the same plans in place. What will you call it when Hillary has the same military contingencies? A stroke of genius?