Daily Kos
Political analysis and other daily rants on the state of the nation

Wednesday | September 03, 2003

Cost of war becoming Bush's albatross

The sheen is off Bush's War. With 10 dead per week and billions frittered away, it's clear the administration is in serious damage control mode.

The Congressional Budget Office has estimated that military operations alone (not including rebuilding) will cost the US up to $30 billion/year. The CBO report also argues the US must reduce its troop presence, lest it fail to meet its commitments elsewhere around the world.

The administration is playing coy with numbers, and still has not released an initial estimate for the cost of reconstruction:

Despite increasing demands from Congress for details of the costs of postwar Iraq, the Bush administration is likely to wait two months before submitting its first rebuilding estimate, administration officials say.
The reasons are fairly obvious -- Bush has finally given Powell permission to head to the UN, begging cup in hand. The hope, of course, being that other nations will start chipping in.

In other words, the very same nations Bush maligned ("freedom fries" anyone?) are now supposed to turn around and bail Bush out with treasure and the lives of their soldiers?

Ain't gonna happen.

And how bad did Bush fuck up Iraq? Bad enough that Thomas White -- Bush's first Army secretary and Enron alum has ripped his old boss and benefactor a new one:

Clearly the view that the war to `liberate' Iraq would instantly produce a pro-United States citizenry ready for economic and political rebirth ignored the harsh realities on the ground," White wrote in a preface to "Reconstructing Eden," which is to be published Thursday.

In a letter to news organizations announcing the book's release, White was even tougher on the administration. "Unbelievably, American lives are being lost daily," he wrote. White said the administration lacks a cohesive, integrated plan to stabilize and rebuild the country.

"We did not conduct the war this way and we should not continue rebuilding the country in a haphazard manner," he wrote. "The result will be a financial disaster, more lives lost, chaos in Iraq and squandered American goodwill."

Again, there's nothing here that should come as a surprise. It was clear from the beginning that Bush's war plan was flawed, relying on the sweet nothings whispered into his ear by Chalabi, Wolfowitz, Pearle, and the rest of the Chickenhawk cabal.

And the results?

Vernon Dent had expected his youngest home from Iraq in just four months.

Yesterday, standing in the hallway outside the Park Road NW apartment he had shared with his son, Vernon Dent had pride in his voice, but also sorrow, and emotional exhaustion. His son was dead, killed in action.

Posted September 03, 2003 09:40 AM | Comments (94)


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