I had planned to write about the longbow. Just before beginning I took a swift look around at some of the blogs I like to check on. I went to BLOG THEM OUT OF THE STONE AGE. I like to drop in every now and then to see what Dr. Grimsley has to say. Most of what he says seem to be focused on military historians and academia. In spite of my degrees I have no desire to teach history. I skip those posts. Today, however, I see his headline: “Who Won the Iraq War?” This intrigued me since I didn’t know the war was over.
The good doctor wrote: “Gary Brecher at War Nerd has a post that’s lengthy but well worth reading in full.” I thought damn, I need to get my head out of 16th- and 17-century primary material and blog a news site. Nope, I could find no evidence the war had ended. Evidently Mr. Brecher knows and he is going to let me in on who won. I begin to read. I had only gone in a few lines when I read: “So Graham, McCain’s bitch, jumps in to embarrass Reid with his question.” A red flag shoots up. I suddenly realize I’m reading a writer with a left wing agenda. How did I know that? Well the juvenile name call was the give away. Most left-wing name calling writing styles generally have more agenda than information. That’s why I normally don’t bother to read them. But I thought since Dr. Grimsley recommended Mr. Brecher, I will give it a shot. After all there is a slim chance that this time there will be something worth reading.
I should have gone with my first impressions. Mr. Brecher proceeded to, for the next third of the post, describe some kind of fuzzy fantasy about Vice President Cheney as a Persian mole. In my estimation this section was simply immature and stupid.
Finally Mr. Brecher writes something that has a semblance of rationality. “All these claims that Iran is helping the insurgents really make my head spin. Of course they’re helping. They’d be insane if they weren’t. If somebody invades the country next door, any state worth mentioning has to act.”
OK. It’s time to step back and look at this assertion. What Mr. Brecher is saying is that the US invaded Iraq and some of the Iraqi people have risen up to save mother Iraq. The US has sustained casualties but not near the casualties the Iraqi people have from these “insurgents.” Mr. Brecher, evidently, would have us believe that the Iraqi people rose up in response to the US invasion and started killing each other. Now either these are the stupidest, most brain-dead “insurgents” in the history of the world or Mr. Brecher doesn’t understand the term “insurgents.” My vote is for the latter.
At this point one needs to ask one’s self, if Mr. Brecher hasn’t got a clue as to what an insurgent is how is he going to be able to present anything intelligent about the Iraq war. The quick answer is, he can’t. But let’s move on anyway. Mr. Brecher continues on just gushing over how Iran is in the cat seat. What Iran actually did is prove the American Right correct. When Iran flipped its finger at the UN and the UN did nothing, they proved what the Right had said all along: the UN is as useless as tits on boar.
So here we have Mr. Brecher running around flapping his arms while screaming “Iran has won!”, “Iran has won!” All the while the war continues. Mr. Brecher can you spell cognitive dissonance. You see Mr. Brecher, the US can bring down the government of Iran anytime it wants without losing a solider and without dropping a bomb. Iran has a critical weakness. And I’m surprised you don’t know about it. (That’s a lie. After reading your comments, I’m not surprised at all.) While Iran is sitting on top of all that oil, it can’t use a drop of it. They have no refineries. They must ship oil out, have it refined, and then ship gas back in. Without that gas being shipped in the government of Iran would collapse in days. Why do you think the US has packed away record amounts of oil reserves. Think about it.
But now we are coming to the best part. This is the part where Mr. Brecher wants to teach us about the Thirty Year’s War. Alright! This is right up my alley. He starts out with what I’ve come to discover is one of his formulaic questions: Who won the Thirty Years War? His profound answer: France and England. ENGLAND!? At the time of the treaties of Westphalia England was up to it’s ears in civil war. England wasn’t even a party to the treaties. The big winner was the Dutch! They came out with their independence and a colonial empire no other European country could match. By the end of the Thirty Year’s War their fleets were bringing in wealth from all over the globe. They even supplanted the Venetians as the major traders to the Port. It looks like Mr. Brecher tripped on his own hubris and fell flat on his face once again.
This brings us to War Nerd’s guidelines for “who wins wars.”
1) In a big bloodbath like the Thirty Years War or WWI, the winner is usually the powers that don’t fight.
Since the Dutch fought for eighty years trying to drive the Spanish off, that guideline sucks.
2) The biggest loser is almost always the country on whose territory the war is fought.
The fight was on Dutch soil proving that guideline sucks. But we have more. In Iraq, 47 countries have reestablished there embassies in Iraq. The Iraq government employs 1.2 million Iraqi. 3100 schools have been renovated, Iraq’s higher educational structure consists of 20 Universities, 46 Institutes or colleges and 4 research centers, all currently operating. Iraqi Navy, which is operational, has 5-100-foot patrol craft, 34 smaller vessels and a naval infantry regiment. Iraq’s Air Force consists of three operational squadrons, which includes 9 reconnaissance and 3 US C-130 transport aircraft (under Iraqi operational control). Iraqi Police Service has over 55,000 fully trained and equipped police officers. 5 Police Academies in Iraq that produce over 3500 new officers each 8 weeks. There are more than 1100 building projects going on in Iraq. They include 364 schools, 67 public clinics, 15 hospitals, 83 railroad stations, 22 oil facilities, 93 water facilities and 69 electrical facilities. 96% of Iraqi children under the age of 5 have received the first 2 series of polio vaccinations. 4.3 million Iraqi children were enrolled in primary school by mid October last year. There are 1,192,000 cell phone subscribers in Iraq and phone use has gone up 158%. Iraq has an independent media that consists of 75 radio stations, 180 newspapers and 10 television stations. The Baghdad Stock Exchange opened in June of 2004. 2 candidates in the Iraqi presidential election had a televised debate. I guess that guideline really sucks.
3) In a regional war, the big winner will be any neighboring states that can stay out of the war and work out supply contracts.
How does that work since the US holds the majority of contracts? Let’s mark this guideline as not well thought out.
4) However, if there’s an ethnic spillover, like Turkey has with the Kurds, this relationship can backfire.
Turkey gave us preliminary permission to cross their border into Hussein’s Iraq. Then, at the last moment rescinded that permission throwing our whole invasion time table out of whack. As I see it, Turkey is a big boy and can take care of himself. So, let’s mark this as not being relevant.
5) The worst thing a major power can do is go to war alone for “moral” reasons.
Here comes the obligatory “go to war alone” assertion. This has been shown to be so bogus so many times I’m not going to waste my time on it. But as far as going to war for “moral” reasons, this is a joke. Can you say “We went for the oil”? Oh we didn’t go so that we ourselves could take over the oil. We went over there so fanatic Islamic terrorists and those who would work with them could not control the oil. We went there for our own self interest. That’s the only reason to go to war. Good grief Mr. Brecher, you really don’t know much about war.
You don’t know what insurgents are. You think witty juvenile rhetoric can take the place of reasoned discourse. You know nothing about the Thirty Years War in spite of bringing it up. You guidelines of war suck. Let’s face it, your posts comes off showing you don’t know much at all. The only real question is what Dr. Grimsley saw in this immature prattle. Oh well, we can all have a bad day. I won’t hold it against him. His blog is still one of my favorites.
“We lost the Iraq war.” This is such a lame statement that only a US senator could have made it. Now, back to the longbow.