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Friday, April 27, 2007

What they said - the Bush occupation plan, Oct. 10, 2002

Every once in a while, one needs benchmarks. Here's a benchmark. Here is a story from October 11, 2002, about what the Bush administration planned for Iraq. Contrary to the new shiny revisionism of the warmongers (Hitchens, Perle, Ajami, etc.), the Bush administration announced what it was going to do in plenty of time for its war supporters to know what it was going to do.

This is the war they supported.
Their butter-wouldn't-melt-in-my-mouth stances are actually cynical we-lied-to-cram-the war-down-your-throat-and-they-lied-to-us laments.

Notice, also, the con job of pretending that this was about WMD. The idea that there would be a major effort to find WMD was intrinsic to how the war was sold. Of course, after the invasion, the idea of spending a year making a major search for WMD was given the same status as the search for the tooth fairy or for Santa's reindeer.

Foreign Desk; Section A
U.S. Has a Plan To Occupy Iraq, Officials Report
1380 words

WASHINGTON, Oct. 10 -- The White House is developing a detailed plan, modeled on the postwar occupation of Japan, to install an American-led military government in Iraq if the United States topples Saddam Hussein, senior administration officials said today.

The plan also calls for war-crime trials of Iraqi leaders and a transition to an elected civilian government that could take months or years.
In the initial phase, Iraq would be governed by an American military commander -- perhaps Gen. Tommy R. Franks, commander of United States forces in the Persian Gulf, or one of his subordinates -- who would assume the role that Gen. Douglas MacArthur served in Japan after its surrender in 1945.

One senior official said the administration was ''coalescing around'' the concept after discussions of options with President Bush and his top aides. But this official and others cautioned that there had not yet been any formal approval of the plan and that it was not clear whether allies had been consulted on it.

The detailed thinking about an American occupation emerges as the administration negotiates a compromise at the United Nations that officials say may fall short of an explicit authorization to use force but still allow the United States to claim it has all the authority it needs to force Iraq to disarm.

In contemplating an occupation, the administration is scaling back the initial role for Iraqi opposition forces in a post-Hussein government. Until now it had been assumed that Iraqi dissidents both inside and outside the country would form a government, but it was never clear when they would take full control.
Today marked the first time the administration has discussed what could be a lengthy occupation by coalition forces, led by the United States.

Officials say they want to avoid the chaos and in-fighting that have plagued Afghanistan since the defeat of the Taliban. Mr. Bush's aides say they also want full control over Iraq while American-led forces carry out their principal mission: finding and destroying weapons of mass destruction."

At the time this was published, LI pointed out that the Bush plan was a pipe dream.

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