Journal: True Cost & False Threat in Iraq

Government, Peace Intelligence
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This article reminds me of two things:

1. The supercilious attitude of many State Department people, akin to that displayed by Clinton White House staffers to GEN Barry McCaffrey when he worked in Joint Staff J-5: “… we don’t talk to you military people …”, something I’ve had said to me by certain State people.

2. Rudyard Kipling’s poem, “Tommy”: “… and it’s Tommy this, and Tommy that, and chuck ‘im out, the brute. But it’s ‘savior of his country’ when the guns begin to shoot.'”)

Diplomats face security problems in Iraq

By Joe Davidson  Thursday, September 23, 2010; 8:20 PM

Now that most U.S. military forces have left Iraq, the American diplomats left behind face serious security problems the State Department is ill-prepared to tackle.

That’s the grave message the Commission on Wartime Contracting in Iraq and Afghanistan presented to Congress on Thursday.

Much of the security once provided by the military will have to be done by private contractors, yet the department does not have the money to hire the number needed nor the capability to manage them.

Read rest of article…

Phi Beta Iota: The mixed tragedy-farce that is of our own making in Iraq will continue to drain blood, treasure, and spirit for the simple reason that we went in on the basis of 935 documented lies; while both military and diplomatic organizations lacked the integrity to get it right–one threw money at the problem without thinking, the other “went along” without screaming bloody murder in front of Congress and the public.   Today the diplomats–we have zero sympathy–inherent a vast fortress that is actually unsustainable as well as unnecessary.  The “threat” is vastly over-stated as it always in when security officers are in charge of threat assessments (the United Nations Department of Safety & Security is led by a former US diplomatic security officer, and we can attest from personal experience that DSS is largely corrupt in the worst case, inept in the best case, in its threat & risk assessments)–within State, ignorance and lack of integrity lead to two complementary problems: way too many individuals, most unqualified to be in-country, to be protected; and a security cadre with absolutely no clue that the “solution” is to evacuate most of them, turn the complex over to the Iraqis, and strip down to real professionals that can navigate in uncertain environments.