Quote of the Day: ‘Whatever Petraeus Wants’

by matttbastard

“It is part of Bush’s overall management style — to cede responsibility to a lower level and not look carefully at critical issues himself… . Originally on Iraq, it was whatever Rumsfeld wanted. Then it was whatever Jerry Bremer did… . And now it is whatever Petraeus wants.”

– Kenneth Adelman, “a Reagan-era official who has parted company with such longtime friends as Rumsfeld and Vice President Cheney over the war”, on the secrets of George W. Bush’s epic fail strategy (ie “find a convenient scape goat to do a heckuva job”).

Recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers

2 thoughts on “Quote of the Day: ‘Whatever Petraeus Wants’

  1. Who the hell is Jerry Bremer. L. Paul Bremer perhaps? Adelman was instrumental in pushing the “Bush Doctrine” and fomenting the Iraq War. Now that the war has gone sour, Adelman has rushed to the sidelines where he can safely snipe at Bush.


  2. Yes, Adelman was the one who infamously said that transforming Iraq would be “a cakewalk”.

    Ken Silverstein has more on Adelman’s “stunning” hypocrisy:

    In 2002 it was he who famously predicted that American forces would enjoy “a cakewalk” in Iraq, and during the run-up to the invasion he derided war critics for their stupidity and naiveté. “There’s always the chicken littles, running around and saying ‘oh my God, it’s terrible,’” he said on Hardball, six days before the war began, when asked about the possibility that things might not go as smoothly as he and his fellow-hawks had predicted.

    The following month, he was gloating to the New York Times that his “cakewalk” prediction had been remarkably prescient. Adelman, according to the story, “scorned recent complaints by retired generals and military analysts that the Pentagon had deployed too few troops” to Iraq. “I always thought that was ridiculous,” Adelman told the newspaper. “It turned out they were factually wrong. I never understood what having three times as many troops would have done.”

    But what’s most astonishing about Adelman’s current criticism of the Bush Administration is that he argued for a “stay the course” approach long after it became clear that the war was a burgeoning disaster. He paid no mind to the idea that Iraqis were growing uneasy with the American presence, and said that although the administration was doing its best, more needed to be done in terms of generating employment and economic opportunities. “There were possibilities in the beginning, but they were all [floundering] for some reason or other,” he told MSNBC in June of 2003.


    Now, after all this, Adelman would have us believe that he has absolutely no responsibility for the Iraq disaster? His breaking point on Iraq, he told the Post, was Bush’s decision to award Medals of Freedom to Paul Bremer, General Tommy Franks, and George Tenet. “The three individuals who got the highest civilian medals the President can give were responsible for a lot of the debacle that was Iraq.” Adelman sounds jealous, not righteous. It’s too bad there’s no medal for being a whining, war-promoting hypocrite.


    And yes, “Jerry” is Bremer’s nickname.


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