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November 08, 2006

Brave New... White House?
Posted by Heather Hurlburt

So let me get this straight:

the man who doesn't read polls, "stays the course," and just last week pledged the Rumsfeld would be "with him to the end," removed his Defense Secretary before the election tallies are even final? (it seemed clear from the news conference Q and A that the decision was made before the elections... i wonder whether the coordinated military newspaper editorials calling for Rumsfeld's removal were the final nail?)

the man who has hardly had any use for first Bush Administration loyalists replaces Don Rumsfeld with his father's CIA director?

ok, is it just me or is it odd to put in as head of DoD someone who appears not to have served in the military -- which, given his age, would mean he avoided the draft??  UPDATE:  Marc Grinberg says Gates did serve two years giving intel briefings to ICBM crews:  more here.  I still wish he had more recent military experience...

and read the text of Bush's 1pm news conference and tell me if bits of it don't sound directly cribbed from the Bill Clinton playbook?  (And, White House speechwriters, that joke about giving Nancy Pelosi names of decorators for her new drapes:  not funny.  Better do some remedial work on interacting with women professionals.  Fast.)

It really is a new world.


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Gates joined CIA at 22 in 1966. Unless I'm mistaken he would have been exempt from conscription after that time. His Texas A&M bio is here:

I find it humorous that the Rummy resignation was first reported last night at 12:15 am on the Comedy Central Blog.
And, if Bush's usual lame performance at the news conference was not enough to underscore his innate stupidity, to suggest there are not enough interior designers in San Francisco to help Nancy Pelosi redocorate her new Speaker's office takes the cake.

Do people think that Rumsfeld would really have resigned had the election gone differently? I'm dubious, but I didn't see this coming so I'm not sure.

I have to think that there are a lot of Republicans who lost in close races who are both angry and flabbergasted right now by the timing of the Rumsfeld departure. If Rumsfeld was going to be sacked, why didn't Bush sack him on Monday, the day before the election, rather than Wednesday, the day after.

If Bush had canned Rumsfeld on Monday, that would have been the one scrap of evidence that a few wavering independents and Republicans needed that Bush was making a "course correction". It might have been enough to bring a few of them back into the Republican camp, and help the Republicans hold on in the nail-biting races. I actually thought that the Army Times article was a set up to help engineer a "November Surprise" for the benefit of Republicans (along with the other setup: the Saddam verdict).

Tottally clueless. What an idiot Bush is. So much for the Rovian genius of this administration.

Let's keep in mind that, while Rumsfeld was justifiably criticized for many of his decisions, one of the main points of contention (particularly with generals) was his refusal to send more hundreds of thousands of troops to Iraq.

News Item (WaPo, Oct 26, 2006): The top American commander in Iraq said Tuesday that he may call for more troops to be sent to Baghdad, possibly by increasing the overall U.S. presence in Iraq, as rising bloodshed pushes Iraqi and American deaths to some of their highest levels of the war.

And the Dems have Charlie Rangel's draft bil to provide more bodies for the slaughterhouses.


WASHINGTON - Lawmaker Says Volunteer Military May be Overwhelmed by Military Challenges in Iran, North Korea and Syria requiring more troops who will have to be drafted

Congressman Charles Rangel today introduced new legislation to reinstate the military draft that will include draftees up to 42 years of age.

The bill would mandate military service for men and women between the ages of 18 and 42. Deferments would be allowed only for completion of high school up to the age of 20, and for reasons of health, conscience or religious belief. Recruits not needed by the military in any given year would be required to perform some national civilian service.

Time for the Dems to be Strong On Defense? Bush might just stick their noses in it and challenge the Dems to stand up and be counted. "The generals need more troops to win in Iraq, will you deny them?"
I feel a dreft.

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