The Flynn-flam in a nutshell, plus Erratic Mad Dog Unchained

wtf turks
First, the nutshell, two paragraphs:

‘The popular movement against Trump vs. the corporate media’s anti-Russia witch-hunt’, Andre Damon,

 “One day after Donald Trump’s extraordinary news conference, the battle within the American state only grew more intense. The conflict pits the ultra-right president of the United States against powerful sections of the military-intelligence apparatus, with the corporate media, the Democratic Party and a section of the Republicans serving as mouthpieces of the CIA.”  [snip]

“The media, for its part, escalated its campaign against the new president, branding him an ally, if not agent, of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The logic of this operation, carrying with it the stench of McCarthyism, is war. The media demonization of Putin, like similar media operations against Noriega, Milosevic, Saddam Hussein, Gaddafi and Assad, is a preparation for military aggression—this time against the world’s second biggest nuclear power.”

After expressing his shock at the ‘popular movements freaking cheering for the CIA, Damon names a few of the celebrity Dems as complicit in the “Trump as Russian traitor” barrage: michael moore, liz warren, bernie sanders, and quotes gaggably from the NYT’s unsourced CIA claims.  But then he gets to pseudo intellectual con man Dem Paul Krugman, having gone full-tilt in the defense of the Imperial War Machine, yet not uttering a peep about his dismantling Dodd-Frank piece by piece, nor his infrastructure schemes, as far as I know.  As it happened, I’d run into a similar screed at alternet (with 608 comments) that contained the original link.  Alter what, we might ask, given that it seems to be another mouthpiece to the deep-state borg…

The Silence of the Hacks’, the NYTimes

“The story so far: A foreign dictator intervened on behalf of a U.S. presidential candidate — and that candidate won. Close associates of the new president were in contact with the dictator’s espionage officials during the campaign, and his national security adviser was forced out over improper calls to that country’s ambassador — but not until the press reported it; the president learned about his actions weeks earlier, but took no action.

Meanwhile, the president seems oddly solicitous of the dictator’s interests, and rumors swirl about his personal financial connections to the country in question. Is there anything to those rumors? Nobody knows, in part because the president refuses to release his tax returns.”  [snip]

“Just the other day Republicans were hot in pursuit of potential scandal, and posed as ultrapatriots. Now they’re indifferent to actual subversion and the real possibility that we are being governed by people who take their cues from Moscow.”

Well, yes, Paul; Republican refusals to investigate The Truth™ is indeed ‘even scarier than the Trump-Putin axis’.

Because: deep state soft coups should be encouraged because you’re terrified of any Amerikan rapprochement with Putin and Lavrov, and of course, you love Endless War by Empire and NATO.

(Please don’t believe my objections here have anything to do with my support of Herr Trump or his coming policies, especially the coming more aggressive Police State and increased fact-free War on Drugs ones.)

Are Mattis and Trump on the same FP page? 

From Chris Marsden at, Feb. 17:

“The two-day NATO summit in Brussels that concluded yesterday began with a threat by president Donald Trump’s Defence Secretary James Mattis that the US would “moderate its commitment” if its European allies did not hike up their military spending.”

“Mattis was attending the summit to reiterate the demand made last month by Trump that the European powers step up their defence spending to meet the target of two percent of GDP to which they are pledged. In an interview where he declared the alliance to be “obsolete” and suggested friendlier bilateral relations with Russia, Trump also declared support for Britain’s decision to leave the European Union and spoke favourably of the break-up of a “vehicle for Germany.”

Now I have no idea where this information came from, but it’s entirely believable:

“After first making reassuring public noises about NATO being “a fundamental bedrock for the United States,” he made more critical remarks during closed-door talks that were then circulated publicly by US officials.

Mattis accused “Some in this alliance” of having “looked away in denial of what is happening” by ignoring threats from Russia and Islamic State (Isis).”

Mattis is apparently an Old Cold Warrior, and had once investigated Flynn for ‘unauthroized disclosures to Afghanistan’, perhaps related to…the CIA.

From the tortskiyites, Feb. 18:

(At the Munich security conference) “Mattis sounded a warning to the conference aimed at justifying a further escalation of US and NATO militarism. “We all see our community of nations under threat on multiple fronts as the arc of instability builds on NATO’s periphery and beyond,” he told the meeting, which brought together some 70 defense ministers as well as a number of heads of state.

The “arc of instability” is a phrase that encompasses multiple targets for US aggression, including the Middle East, North Africa and both Iran and Russia.

Mattis went on to declare that “American security is permanently tied to the security of Europe,” adding, “I have great respect for Germany’s leadership in Europe.”

The Pentagon chief’s remarks appeared largely in continuity with US foreign policy pursued by previous administrations and were at odds with Trump’s own rhetorical attacks on NATO as “obsolete” and his labeling of the European Union as a “consortium” exploited by Germany for its own interests.

Both Mattis and the US secretary of state, former ExxonMobil CEO Rex Tillerson, who was attending a nearby meeting of the G-20 foreign ministers in Bonn, have signaled that there is no imminent prospect of a rapprochement that would significantly ease tensions between Washington and Moscow.

Even as Mattis was speaking in Munich, the US military was deploying to Bulgaria as part of the US-NATO buildup in Eastern Europe and on Russia’s borders that now involves 4,000 American troops as well as forces from Britain, Germany and other NATO allies. This buildup has continued unabated since Trump entered the White House.”  [snip]

“Prior to the Munich conference, Mattis stated that there could be no military cooperation between the US and Russia until Moscow “proves itself,” reiterating the US position underlying sanctions over Ukraine and Crimea.”

Then come paragraph after paragraph of bombast from Tillerson on ‘no change in out policy re: Syria, and Putin must back away from regime change an support the FSA if he wants ‘our military cooperation’.  McCrankypants blasted Trump in a pretense of the US not wanting the mantle of global leadership, and that being forced to fire * Flynn proves that his administration is in disarray.  Disarray, I tell you!  Jen Stoltenberg’s over-arching message in Brussels was “Pony up with military expenditures!  2% of GDP or else!”

SO: has the Borg won and there will be no rapprochement with Russia?  And have Herr Trump’s military and state department been assimilated by the Borg?  Was he so naive that he really believed that firing Flynn would stem the tide of The Red Scare?

Talk about ‘buy stock in Jiffy Pop’! Will his own cabinet make Herr T an offer he can’t refuse?

Van Auken finishes with:

“These actions, as well as the open attack on a sitting president by his own party at an international conference in Munich, are virtually unprecedented. They reflect the intense hostility within the US military and intelligence apparatus against any move by the Trump administration to pull back from the protracted escalation of provocations and aggression against Russia. To the extent that Trump has advanced an alternative policy, it has not been one of retreat from global militarism, but rather a tactical shift toward first preparing for war first against Iran and escalating the US confrontation with China.”

Or Iran, because: Bibi.

The headings at their website about the NATO conference give a good indication of what NATO tried to ensure, such as ‘Defence Ministers agree on NATO Hub for the South’.  And remember, after Modi’s charm offensive, NATO has brought (nuclear) India under its ‘umbrella’, not to mention its key ports and weapons purchasing power.

Putin had noted after the NATO meet and pontificate that not since 1989 has Russia been the Imperium’s convenient Satan it is today.


♪ Roll another one…just like the other one…♫

28 responses to “The Flynn-flam in a nutshell, plus Erratic Mad Dog Unchained

  1. an oldie but goodie

    click this for a stand-alone to read the great subtweets. ;-)

  2. From my perspective, the march of folly continues with continuity not dramatic change. Increasingly, the President looks like a distraction from what the Republican Party is actually doing. President Pence? Well, not just a distration. The President is Making America Great Again(tm). That looks more like Presidents who are heads of state or constitutional monarchies.

    The Democrats are still fighting among each other and completely out of the game altogether. Tying to excise the Sanders constituency and ensure that they will never return to power. Anyone with a third party that actually knows how to win electoral politics has a great opportunity to pick up some House seats in 2018 from both Democrats and especially from some Republicans. But they have to organize and contest them starting last November. Can they scrable? Lots of crazy celebrities rumors about Michigan; that might be a great place to try a third party.

    • i suppose in what areas you mean by continuity not dramatic change, as in: domestic r foreign.

      but bernie seems to have excised himself, and become just another dem, but w/ more…verve. ;-) congressional Rs are trying to run the table, but i dunno what they’ve passed into law already, and as w/ R state bills, the houses vote ‘aye’ w/ few concurrent senate bills. but i expect you’re watching far more closely than i.

      as for 2018, i’d think it would have to be a quasi-established party, w/ libertarians the most obvious sorta-strength, no?

      • Yes, either an established party or well-known membership locally (it is a Congressional mid-term) from one of the other parties or a long-time candidate that people out of exasperation give a chance. Essentially for the House, anyone capable of gaining 175,000 votes by hook, crook, or shenanigan.

        It will be interesting to see how much branding of anyone still holds. Or whether run as hypenated-this or -that.

        • ha; even i knew that 2018’s a midterm election, amigo. but if a space opens beyond michigan, how about maryland? trnn: ‘The Real Baltimore: Maryland Democrats Consider Blocking Cities From Raising Their Minimum Wage’ (hb 317)

          for better or worse, i guess i’m not a big believer in elected politicians changing the capitalist trajectory any longer, even in states. socially, yes, maybe, but the lowest common denominator seems to be at play any more. cripes, some of the rubbish proposals coming out of AZ; simply stunning.


          and i’ll give ya this thread again…click for the subtweets, of course.

          • Sorry for being Captain Obvious. Yes, about politicians not fundamentally dealing with capitalism. I’m more concerned, especially locally, with what can be done to mitigate the coming disaster. It is not a theoretical issue.

            In my estimation, any blowback at all will be from those who thought Trump was going to rev up the jobs machine and bring back the factories. For now, the deportations are sufficient to prevent it. If he actually gets infrastructure funding through the skinflints in Congress, that should distribute the jobs for a little bit, and the economy unlike eight years ago is perceived to be close to “full employment” not in the midst of the greatest recession since the great depression. (Now that was a wasted moment for everyone–if only Occupy Wall Street had been ready to go in 2008 with the clarity of David Dayen on the crash.

            Capitalism will collapse itself when the time comes. Changes of civilization generally do.

            So the US Army through its Corps of Engineers is jerking around the same folks they have been jerking around for 170 years. Quelle surprise!

            I think you might see a strategy of temporary obedience and continued prayer and protest. There are other pipeline protest continuing to go on. Trump has checked out calling up state national guards to suppress them. I don’t think we will see Democratic governors act in #resistance if that occurs; it is so easy to nationalize the Guard.

            • i’m lost. if you’re talking about the coming of more mass immiseration of the citizenry, in what areas, for one, and how would/could some third-party elected congressional critters stem what tides you’re imagining? lack of health care? jobs? increased incarceration of dissidents and people of color?

              and i’m not getting the relationship of occupy and david dayen on the crash. when the original kids went to zucotti park, it was mainly about the total inability to pay back their dastardly college loans, yes? and of course the concerns expanded over time, but do explain; i’m not trying to be ignorant.

            • in case you might find these of use locally, they just came in on the pop resistance newsletter:

              Marta Harnecker: ‘Ideas For The Struggle’ the old and new project

              ‘Trump Will Continue to Scam the White Working Class. Here’s How to Stop Him.’
              Feb 16, 2017, By Paul Street

  3. how many billions, tens of billions, of buckaroos and tens of thousands of people are invested in what are essentially escalating efforts to test the boundaries of Russia? just referring to forces on R’s border, mind you. globally, it’s 100’s of billions of bucks & more personnel and material.

    as tiny as it seems from one perspective, changing the minute hand on that clock by just one minute has vast repercussions. among people whose metier is murder, sabotage, black ops, etc. funneling BS thru a corporate media that is filled w/state agents. oh, and Tom Friedmans. i’m convinced our gov’t kills prezzies for such, uh, minute, deviation. (tee hee).

    and our country, from academia to head spookdom & POTUS, journos, etc., is teeming w/Russophobia, has been for a long ass time. these people didn’t up & die. apparently, they don’t even wither. and there sure are a lot of Strangelovian “we cannot allow a mineshaft gap” morons among a segment of liberals, just itching for conflict w/Vampyre Vlad. we don’t even realize the hatred, the nihilism, the blood thirst that infects this country. vis a vis R. and most everyone else. ‘cept Ha Aretz, of course.

    • ‘cept Ha Aretz, of course.’ sure caught my eye. yeah, besides the waste of money, the personnel, the bigger and better weapons systems, ships, nukes, and tra la la, what else blows me away is the fear that turns to offense on a dime, as in: by now at least some of the players know that the western empire has been challenged by china and russia, and other alliances, so it’s full tilt boogie: evil putin, revanchist putin. i just read a whole long thread a welsh’s place that sincerely blew me away along those lines.

      on edit: and that every goddam part of pax americana is zero sum, no matter how roosia and china try to persuade others that cooperation is better than competition, especially by war. but no, we can’t have that.

      dunno your reference to mustache friedman and our G killing prezzies: is he hinting at that as a solution? if so, he ain’t the first, nossir.

      mr. wd kept telling me to read m. whitney’s newest piece, and yes, he seems to agree w/ me that herr T’s cabinet has been assimilated by the borg.

      ““Let’s summarize: The sanctions will remain, the tanks are on the border, the commitment to NATO has been reinforced, and Dunford is going to explain Washington’s strategic objectives to his Russian counterpart in clear, unambiguous language. There will be no room for Tillerson, who is on friendly terms with Putin, to change the existing policy or to normalize relations; Dunford, Haley, and Defense Secretary James Mattis will make sure of that.

      As for Trump, it’s clear by the Crimea tweet, the sacking of Flynn and the (prospective) appointment of Harward, that he’s running scared and is doing everything in his power to get out of the hole he’s dug for himself. There’s no way of knowing whether he’ll be allowed to carry on as before or if he’ll be forced to throw other allies, like Bannon or Conway, under the bus. I would expect the purge to continue and to eventually include Trump himself. But that’s just a guess.”

      whitney’s piece talks about the build-up around roosia, including some of the $$$ outlays and whatnot, including some mas and graphs from the independent. is that paper called the NATO mouthpiece, or is that the BBC? i’ve forgotten.

      • friedman is too much of a moron for US intel services. i just served him up as an example of the rank stupidity among the punditry. David Ignatius, now there’s a guy who doesn’t muddy the picture w/his BS Delhi taxi cab confessions. learned that in spy school, no doubt.

        “reporters battle Trump” – it’s the end of the world! one of the signs. i swear that what’s it says and i’m not gonna let no damn internet search tell me other than what my damn ears already heard. something about snakes on a plane, too. and low flying planes (9/11 predictive programming no doubt. back in…1985 or whatever.)

        to offer me solutions is to offer me alternatives
        and i decline.

        • yah, even i know that ignatius is the IC go-to ‘intellectual’. and yep: the cage fight is ON! in this corner herr T, in the other is the truth-telling press.”

          “calling out the press will bite him in the ass!” blowback!! (guardian op-ed) “snakes on a plane”, grin ++++!

          thanks for the REM: “and i feel fine…” almost gotta, even if it’s coming closer. hope you’re doing okay, even w/ working so many hours of the day. and weekends, tavooch.

          at least so far, the CA oroville dam and spillway are holding (not that were actually speaking of USian crumbling infrastructure) including ubiquitous lead water pipes…

        • i know how much you love the disneyfication of the social struggles, so you will love that there’s a petition out there on (iirc) the #Nodapl account (?) whatever ya call it… like “SNL should do a sketch on standing rock!”. i reckon it would be kewl w/ the proponents if ‘guest star’ beyoncé played ladonna brave bull allard, right? mebbe she could even wear her black panther threads.

  4. The spooks I see harassing Herr T. are the long-term Bush colleagues, like Morrell, Hayden, and others of their now retired majesties. The fact that Hillary Clinton insinuated herself into their club enough to endorse her is at this point secondary to what they taught and why they endorsed her. They have their own longstanding views and motives that go to the almost 30-year-old notion of the US as a sole superpower and how to establish and perpetuate it.

    As best I can tell, Bannon and Flynn were playing Russia as an ally to support US nationalism, ethnic reaction, and oligarchic capitalism. Flynn sought to use Russia against Iran (not sure he understood Putin’s position well about playing Turkey and Iran against each other. Or the much stronger (at the moment) relationship between Russia and China. And their view of a European cluster of nationalist parties gaining ascendancy from the refugee crisis and sinking the European Union.

    Last I heard, Trump had some idea 30 years ago that he could cut the deal to end nuclear weapons. I had the same dream 39 years ago but I was clear that I like lacked both the opportunity and the personal capability to do it. I’m now thinking Pence, Mattis, Tillerson, and K.T. MacFarlane (with Henry the K’s help) will build a diplomatic box around the President so that they can operate as “the adults”. Quote–quote–realism is back, just like the second seven years of Vietnam — realism.

    • bless your heart for that considered analysis, THD. but for tonight, i need to go try to work on mr. wd’s lumbar slipped disc while leaning on a crutch (mah ‘pony’, whicker, whicker..). believe me, the irony of ‘the blind leading the blind’ is not lost on us. ;-) then, sunday night date night for us: pbs’s ‘veronica, queen of england’. (kinda crap, but i just watch it for the fabrics, like downtTown abbey). sleep well, and my best to miz thd as well.

    • so you see those former spooks as some of the nyt’s unnamed sources? not clapper or brennan? it’s hard to say if there were indeed *any* sources, no? or is what your named three are indicating publicly that leads you to them?

      i don’t doubt for a minute that you’re wrong about bannon, flynn and nationalism, seeking: putin collaboration, but the ‘against iran’ doesn’t track for me, i admit. mcFarlane’s not the torture architect, then?

      “realism”. gotta imagine that one through. though my trouble is likely that i don’t know how that fits into the last even years of viet nam.

      • Morrell and Hayden actively campaigned for Clinton and did express the opinion that Trump was not fit to be President. Clapper and Brennan until January 20 were still in their jobs and felt it politic not to do anything other than normal. They might be eager to get on with their post-political money-making. I see no advantages for them weighing in on Trump’s administration after having claimed a smooth transition. For all I know, these folks could be bending as the aspens, as Scooter and Judy Miller so aptly put a coordination of stories.

        Kissinger’s “realism” was a philosophy of international relations that looked toward constantly balancing power so you (personally? as a nation?) always came out on top. The two supposed masters of realism in foreign policy and political life were Talleyrand and Metternich. But John Foster Dulles and Dean Rusk were supposedly realists as well. End-to-end clusterfudge was what I saw beginning in high school and lasting into my 30s. That this is seen as an asset for K. T. McFarland shows how deep a hole the responsibility-to-protect folks dug for themselves and how lightweight in foreign policy, as opposed to the military aspects of national security, the Trump team is in background. But then, experience in actually doing US foreign policy over the past, what 70 years, seems to be a handicap to success unless war without end is your purpose.

        • you’re right of course that clapper and brennan couldn’t actively endorse clinton, and i may remember wrong, but i’d thought their tells might have been how sanguine they (or at least clapper) were about her private email server use.

          thanks for the kissinger ‘realism’, although i’m still not grasping it, but that’s okay. i did get to thinking what you might have meant about david dayen and occupy. his work on ‘demand the deed’ for robo-signed morgages, as well as the chopped up parts stuck into designed to fail derivatives…could have led earlier to the later #occupyForeclosures direct actions.

          i’d had occasion earlier to dig out a site about that coupled with DD’s name. i just tried again, and found his new book instead, ta da!

          on edit 2/21: okay, i read a good portion of this atlantic piece and a related piece, and i do understand more now.

  5. proud to be an americant

    I know, OT, but I think Herr Trump, channeling Alex Jones, is engaged in predictive programming, re: Bowling Green, Sweden, etc. if you throw enough predictive shit against the wall…

    what are the odds that Trump will up the ante on the current war in Syria? do what that lily-livered, yellow-bellied, Nobomba was too chicken shit to do, topple the Assad regime, I mean, “crush ISIS”?

    put him back in good w/Mika Brzinski & the Morning Joe crowd, and set us all on a course to be doubleplus pleasing to Mika’s pops, Mr. Operation Cyclone hisself, Zbig. how happy they’ll all be when some thing sparks ww3.

    followers of chaos out of control as they said on another song on this album, but here’s the song of the day:

    • ha, predictive programming stickin’ to the wall. i’d seen the headlines re: terr’a attacks in sweden, but bowling green…where? well, o-bla-di, the new nat. sec. adviser sounds like a good un, and according to wsws even pleases mccrankypants, so he must be another neocon hawk. macmaster doesn’t even have to get a waiver from congress, so dems can’t show us how much they love rule by military…again.

      “According to a report last year in Politico, “McMaster is quietly overseeing a high-level government panel intended to figure out how the Army should adapt to this Russian wake-up call.” He told a Senate committee, “Russia possesses a variety of rocket, missile and cannon artillery systems that outrange and are more lethal than US Army artillery systems and munitions.” He called for developing advanced weapons to replace the two main Army armored vehicles, the Abrams tank and the Bradley Fighting Vehicle.

      This background suggests that McMaster will be aligned with Secretary of Defense Mattis in viewing Russia as the main strategic adversary of US imperialism in both the Middle East and Europe. That accounts for the widespread praise for his selection by those who have been spearheading the anti-Russian campaign on behalf of the US military-intelligence apparatus.”

      so has this group of generals at least pretended that assad can stay? i srsly don’t know what alleged FP stand are herr T or his er…junta chiefs. i just read that mad dog bombed isis/is 99 times in three days, which makes the report of him having once said that ‘killing taliban is fun!’ sound about right.

      catch me up: isn’t the US already arming the fsa? song of the day indeed, thanks, amerikant.

  6. I don’t think McMaster is a neocon. Pat Lang (Sic Semper Tyrannis blog) thinks very highly of him and Lang hates neocons. Also says he was promoted in spite of the military establishment. He might be a good one.

    • yes, i know pat lang a bit. and yes, herr trump had suggested and passed over john bolton…for now. but with mccain’s and hayden’s vivid endorsements, even though mcmaster was never a nato general, perhaps i extrapolated too much from this, that reminded me of neoliberlcons from patrick martin above:

      “Such an approach suggests that General McMaster, like Trump himself, would favor the plundering of social programs in order to pay for the rapid and extensive military buildup that both have advocated, preparing for an explosion of American militarism on a scale that would dwarf both Vietnam and the current wars in the Middle East and Central Asia.”

      also his alliance w/ petraeus in iraq made me jump to that conclusion. did pat lang say that he and mad dog would have an ‘uneasy relationship’ or was it another general? see how short my memory is? thanks for weighing in, doug.

      on edit: i need to say that for me, ‘a good general’ is an oxymoron.

      • Can we agree that some generals are worse than others? Which would imply some are better than others. Lang thought McMaster would have problems with Bannon and others in the comments suggested he might not excel at bureaucratic infighting.

        • ach, bannon. swiss cheese brain here. but as for some generals being worse, some being better than others, oh, my. it would totally depend on the metrics considered, wouldn’t it? efficiency, tactics, subordinates’ love or fear, as in: following a general off a cliff…ethics (or is that unfair, considering?), new thinking and strategies (allegedly high on the list for many for mcM). but alas, i’ll need to tackle this tomorrow sometime, but please know i’ve done some poking about and have some thoughts and questions. i still need to discover what his job was in the *second* gulf war… ;-)

          oh, and what would col. lang consider a ‘good un’? ;-)

          • My ideal general would try to avoid conflict and minimize suffering. A long time ago I read Sun Tzu’s “Art of War”. What stayed with me was the notion that the better you understood any opponent the better off you were.
            I can’t speak for (and often disagree with) Lang.

  7. i’ll jump down here, doug c. to respond. those are two good notions, but for me, as all wars since ww II have been wars of choice, all based on lies and agitprop and quest for resources, i have major problems w/ not only the military, but especially the brass.

    i did forget the most obvious other metrics for ‘a good general’, though: kill ratios and decorations. mcMaster covered himself in glory (some peeps have been busy burnishing his wiki). ;-) for one, in ‘the battle of 73 easting’, “though significantly outnumbered and encountering the enemy by surprise as McMaster’s lead tank crested a dip in the terrain, the nine tanks of Eagle Troop destroyed over eighty Iraqi Republican Guard tanks and other vehicles without loss” even though the iraqi tanks were crap, but he still won a silver medal.

    national patriotic radio loves him, as all seem to, neoliberals and neocons alike, partially because Get Russia is back on the table, which pleases them all. mcM has been ‘go in big’ (his criticism of the failed military policy in his book), and was one who was outraged at bush’s failure to ‘march all the way to bagdhad’, which then, of course, dubya felt was his job to correct later. and of course, beating down ‘the insurgency’ in iraq again will be mcmaster’s gig (will he author another surge’ as in 2006-07?)

    now the reason i’d been trying to find out his jobs and commands in both the first two iraq wars was because not long ago i’d had occasion to see if there were evidence of a squib i’d read post- one of those wars that told the stories of how many surrendering and/or retreating iraqi soldiers were both blown to bits by tanks, fire from apache helicopters and…omg: buried alive. and yes, i’ve found it again, although sy hersh’s historical story in the new yawker is behind a paywall. so, w/o being able to tie mcmaster to any of it, it’s altogether too easy for me to imagine any indoctrinated military lifer could have been. fucking barry mccaffrey go him a big old medal, as did others. for bravery, no doubt.

    ‘Remembering “The Highway Of Death;,

    (beyond the highway of death carnage) “In addition to the Highway of Death carnage, an incident occurred that has since been forgotten by most of the world. On the first two days of the ground war (February 24 and 25, 1991), U.S. troops, using tanks and earthmovers that had been specially-fitted with plows, buried thousands of Iraqi soldiers alive.
    Three brigades of the 1st Mechanized Infantry Division (the Big Red One) used the tactic to destroy trenches and bunkers that were defended by about 10,000 Iraqi soldiers. These combatants were draftees, not seasoned troops such as the Republican Guard.

    The assault was carefully planned and rehearsed. According to U.S. participants, about 2,000 Iraqis surrendered and were not buried. Most of the rest, about 8,000, were buried beneath tons of sand — many trying to surrender. Captain Bernie Williams was rewarded for his part in the burying with a Silver Star. He said, “Once we went through there, other than the ones who surrendered, there wasn’t anybody left.”

    According to a senior Army official who, under anonymity, was questioned by The Spotlight about the tactics, the use of earthmovers is standard procedure in breaching obstacles and minefields. The heavy equipment precedes armored and infantry units to level barriers, then the vehicles can move quickly through enemy defenses. The official stated that any Iraqi troops who remained in their bunkers would have been buried and killed. He added, “This is war. This isn’t a pickup basketball game.”

    Appointment of “Warrior-Scholar” McMaster signals intensification of anti-Russia confrontation’, bill van auken

    well, anyway. i’ve spent my life protesting war since as far back as viet nam at kent state, ergo: good general is beyond my ken, that’s all.

  8. I admit that for me it is a mostly theoretical notion. Certainly I cannot think of a US general I admire. In casting about I thought of Giap, but it is very hard for me to endorse anyone willing to sacrifice thousands.
    As far as McMaster goes the more I learn the less I like. I remember the Highway of Death. Mostly I see these people (officers) as monsters, much like many jihadis, crafted by a perverse culture to dominate the rest of us.

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