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Stuck in the Quicksand (Hackworth Article Poor Timing Alert)
SFTT.Org ^ | April 1, 2003 | David H. Hackworth

Posted on 04/03/2003 6:00:43 PM PST by PJ-Comix

Since Vice President Dick Cheney said he saw the war in terms of “weeks rather than months,” I wish I could report that Tommy Franks’ grunts were beating Desert Storm's 100-hour-war record set by Stormin’ Norman's studs in 1991. But because Saddam got the message in 1991 that his army couldn't stand toe-to-toe with our military machine and walk away the winner, that's sadly not the case.

Instead, Saddam’s sadists took a page from the post-World War I German Command, which came up with a smart new way of doing war business after waving the white flag and subsequently blitzkrieged its way across Europe in just over a year.

The vanquished tend to question why they lost and adjust their battle tactics and gear accordingly. The victors seldom bother to mess with success. Which is probably why, given Desert Storm's easy score, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld felt comfortable going back to the Gulf with four combat divisions – even though the president authorized eight. Especially when air power's “shock and awe” promised a quicker, cheaper win.

Now we're stuck in the Iraqi quicksand in a soon-to-be burning desert with guerrillas tearing up our rear, doing unto our troops whatever unconventional fighters did to the French at Moscow, the Germans at Stalingrad, the Americans in Vietnam and Somalia, the Soviets in Afghanistan and the Russians in Chechnya.

While Saddam was watching videotapes of “Apocalypse Now” and “Black Hawk Down” and taking notes, Donald Rumsfeld and Gen. Richard Myers – badly misjudging Iraq's determination – chose to refight Desert Storm.

The Dream Team made three classic mistakes:

* Not understanding the enemy or the nature of the war.

* Thinking smart bombs would do the job.

* Underestimating the patriotism of the average Saddam-hating Iraqi and how fiercely he'd fight for his country.

Sources who participated in the year-long war games prepping for Operation Iraqi Freedom say prescient junior officers – pointing out that Saddam was publicly ordering his people to prepare to fight unconventionally – pushed strongly for scenarios to include: insurgent strikes to soft rear areas with missiles; hit-and-run guerillas cutting our supply lines; and other suicide assaults such as car bombs.

But the brass blew off their paramilitary prophecy as radical thinking. Majors don't win verbal wars with generals – particularly slick political types under the thumb of an overpowering SecDef who seems to have bet a lot of lives on technology.

A concerned retired general says: “I think the combination of Rumsfeld and the current chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, an Air Force man, is a dangerous mix. I'm sure Myers is a superb combat pilot, but that doesn't qualify him for influencing a ground campaign. And there's never been a war won by air alone. Sure, it sets the conditions for final victory, but until you get the troops on the ground to do the dirty, dangerous work, you can never achieve victory. The final truth is that our soldiers and Marines and airman always have to take our plans and make them work.”

During the Vietnam War, our leadership managed to violate all nine Principles of War. In Iraq, as in Vietnam, we have control of the air but don't have Initiative on the ground, Mass, Surprise, etc. And most of the top brass support Rumsfeld's scary impersonation of former Defense Secretary Robert McNamara by agreeing that victory is just around the next guerrilla-ambush corner.

Talk about denial. Last week, Operations Chief Maj. Gen. Victor Renuart, holding court at Central Command's prime-time version of the Spinners Club, said a car-bomb attack that killed four soldiers came from “an organization that's getting desperate” and not playing by the rules. Big surprise!

George W. Bush needs to immediately reassess his war plan, bring in more combat troops, heed the advice of his fighting generals on the ground rather than his team of mainly chicken-hawk advisers and immediately readjust his tactics. He needs to get real and apply the lessons learned from the Russians in Chechnya and the Israelis in Lebanon – and to understand what went wrong in Vietnam.

Hopefully then, he won't make the mistake of another Texas president who didn't sack his SecDef and Joint Chiefs chairman straight away for their screw-ups – an error so egregious it cost our country almost 60,000 American lives and LBJ his presidency.


TOPICS: Extended News; Foreign Affairs
KEYWORDS: armchairgenerals; davidhackworth; iraq; iraqifreedom; quagmire
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To: PJ-Comix
Yo, Col. Hack, sit down and shut up. You're obsolete.
51 posted on 04/03/2003 6:29:19 PM PST by SamiGirl
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To: mc10
McCaffrey is a clintonista, and hack is gettin old, maybe senile, desperate to get hits on his website, c'mon Hack has this campaign really "failed ", this is a big time ass whoopin' with a temporary slow down due to 3rd armor moving way too fast for the logistics to keep up !!!! yeeeeeeeeeeesh !
52 posted on 04/03/2003 6:29:46 PM PST by 1poedpatriot
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To: PJ-Comix
Sad. Truly sad - the guy has paid his dues, but sometimes that just isn't enough. Time, I think, for this old soldier to do some fading away.
53 posted on 04/03/2003 6:30:13 PM PST by Billthedrill
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To: PJ-Comix
Retired Air Force LGEN McInerney on FOX has been right on the money for several weeks now. He was never one of the naysayers, called the plan brilliant early, and has been supportive and positive since day one. I always had the feeling that he was just a little better tuned-in than the rest of them. Maybe that's why he got three stars.
54 posted on 04/03/2003 6:32:42 PM PST by Swampmarine
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To: Billthedrill
Hackworthless is spewing his garbage on Larry King right now.
55 posted on 04/03/2003 6:32:42 PM PST by Mr. Mojo
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To: PJ-Comix
Retired Air Force LGEN McInerney on FOX has been right on the money for several weeks now. He was never one of the naysayers, called the plan brilliant early, and has been supportive and positive since day one. I always had the feeling that he was just a little better tuned-in than the rest of them. Maybe that's why he got three stars.
56 posted on 04/03/2003 6:32:42 PM PST by Swampmarine
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Hackworthless is spewing his garbage on Larry King right now.
57 posted on 04/03/2003 6:32:42 PM PST by Mr. Mojo
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To: Billthedrill
Hack is not going to fade away as he has a new cause now. He will show up again babbling about all the diseases that the troops have from Gulf II.

He must have some money to back him from somewhere and someone.

As Rush says, always look for the money trail.
58 posted on 04/03/2003 6:33:48 PM PST by Conservababe (I calls it like I sees it.)
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To: dead
We need to develop some "cammo cabanas" for our shy boys.

Several years ago I was traveling and working myself around the country. To save expenses I started camping out and really enjoyed it. I called my mother long distance soon afterwards and let her know that I cut expenses by camping out in the countryside. I'll never forget my mother's response which reminds me of Hack's comment:

"But...but where do you go to the bathroom?"

59 posted on 04/03/2003 6:33:56 PM PST by PJ-Comix
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To: Mr. Mojo
>Hackworth is delusional and stupid --- A loser through and through. ....(with a bad Roman faggot haircut).

Hold on now, that's being a little harsh toward the man. He's an American hero...but as people get old, like he is, the mind starts to shrink, especially in males. Remember that...
60 posted on 04/03/2003 6:34:04 PM PST by Norse
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To: Conservababe
Everyone is so willing and able to criticize everything Hackworth says, including, I suppose, his use of the words "the" and "and" without giving thought to anything he says. It's all or nothing. So you don't credit the article. Is there nothing of value in it? Why tear the man down for giving an opinion? Even fools have some good ideas now and then, and I don't consider Col Hackworth a fool, just old, like me, but with a great deal more experience.
61 posted on 04/03/2003 6:34:26 PM PST by Sir Charles
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To: PJ-Comix
Hackworth on Larry King now: "There's no question that we would win this war. This is Paul Bunyan with a sledge hammer trying to kill some ants in an anthill."
62 posted on 04/03/2003 6:34:26 PM PST by hotpotato
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To: Mr. Mojo
that is a pre-requisite for being on larry seltzers show !
63 posted on 04/03/2003 6:36:29 PM PST by 1poedpatriot
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To: Mr. Mojo
Hackworthless is spewing his garbage on Larry King right now.

I tuned it in and Hack is talking about how quickly the Iraqi army is capitulating. I guess Hack doesn't stand by his own columns such as this one predicting Doom & Gloom.

64 posted on 04/03/2003 6:37:40 PM PST by PJ-Comix
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To: PJ-Comix
He's also stating he is still a critic and it's ok to criticize when you have the training (like he does, I presume).
65 posted on 04/03/2003 6:39:37 PM PST by hotpotato
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To: PhiKapMom
Yesterday McCaffrey backed way off and was praising General Myers and General Franks like crazy. Called General Myers the absolute best General for the job of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs.

I have a bit of experience with "Generals". And after watching the various residents of the position of Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, I'm inclined to say that my vote for the best goes to Myers. And that includes Powell, and definitely that Clinton suck-up Shelton. Oh, my God am I glad that Shelton is not the current Chairman.

I don't recall ever hearing a general who was more praising of his subordinates than Myers. He has repeatedly credited Gen. Franks for the planning and excersize of the plan in Iraq. That's the measure of a great man.

66 posted on 04/03/2003 6:39:38 PM PST by jackbill (i)
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To: PJ-Comix
Hey, I looked at the date. April Fool's joke. Right?
67 posted on 04/03/2003 6:39:56 PM PST by RJayneJ
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To: PJ-Comix
Hackworth is on Larry King right now STILL being very critical ("We didn't have enough troops on the ground", etc etc, bitch bitch bitch).

The guy has lost it. I'm sorry for him, but he shouldn't be presented as any sort of expert.
68 posted on 04/03/2003 6:40:03 PM PST by Ole Okie (Q)
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To: PJ-Comix
Yeah, he's doing some serious backpedaling ....with a sh/t-eating grin.
69 posted on 04/03/2003 6:40:15 PM PST by Mr. Mojo
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To: Sir Charles
Mr Charles

I do not consider Hackworth a fool. But, I will judge him on his own words. And I do not like his words or his opinions.

But, I like you. You are a sweetie. <>
70 posted on 04/03/2003 6:40:17 PM PST by Conservababe (I calls it like I sees it.)
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To: hotpotato
Hackworth on Larry King now: "There's no question that we would win this war. This is Paul Bunyan with a sledge hammer trying to kill some ants in an anthill."

I saw that....Hackworth is really making himself look ridiculous.

A caller just asked them to comment on the "armchair generals" BS.....and Hackworth is trying to spin his way out of his previous position. What a bozo.

71 posted on 04/03/2003 6:40:18 PM PST by Jorge
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To: mc10
McCaffrey is a total joke which made his backtracking so funny! Couldn't even stick by his statements when confronted and tried to suck up! He looked even worse than he did when he was trashing!
72 posted on 04/03/2003 6:40:30 PM PST by PhiKapMom (Get the US out of the UN and the UN out of the US)
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To: PJ-Comix
The transformation of Hackworth has been amazing. I think he needs to check his blood sugar.

It's sad to see him become as non-relevant as the UN.

73 posted on 04/03/2003 6:42:26 PM PST by wcbtinman (Not from 'my cold dead hands', but from your's.)
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To: Mr. Mojo
Yeah, he's doing some serious backpedaling ....with a sh/t-eating grin.

PERFECT description of the look on his face. Too bad some caller doesn't call in with some quotes from this article.

74 posted on 04/03/2003 6:43:44 PM PST by PJ-Comix
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To: Retrofire
ala Marcincko

At least Marchinko is entertaining, in a "Big Dumb Polak" sort of way. My daughter's new father in law has met him, and since he's a big ol Polak himself, but an ex Air Force "Good Guy" as well, he grins like a Chesire cat when he talks about it.

75 posted on 04/03/2003 6:44:32 PM PST by El Gato
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To: jackbill
I am with you on General Myers. I thought he would be good but he has exceeded every expectation that I had.

The other one I didn't like too was the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs who came in after Powell -- cannot spell his name. His Uncle was a General in the Russian Army.

Couldn't stand Shelton either. I can remember watching a DoD Budget hearing very late one night on C-SPAN. Senator Inhofe asked General Mike Ryan whether the Air Force had enough money and General Ryan told it like it was about how much training was down because of lack of funds, etc. Went through everything that was being neglected and General Shelton kept trying to interrupt him but the Senator kept telling him to go on. If looks could kill, General Ryan wouldn't be with us because Shelton and Cohen were really irritated at him. It was a priceless moment.
76 posted on 04/03/2003 6:45:50 PM PST by PhiKapMom (Get the US out of the UN and the UN out of the US)
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To: PJ-Comix
hack has turned into such a hack I won't even bother reading this article.
77 posted on 04/03/2003 6:46:07 PM PST by TaRaRaBoomDeAyGoreLostToday!
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To: PhiKapMom
i have enjoyed seeing him humiliate himself, unfortunately at the attempted expense of some real heroes. I believe he may have accomplished a bigger feat of humiliation than HERaldo.
78 posted on 04/03/2003 6:46:50 PM PST by mc10
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To: Sir Charles
Is there nothing of value in it [the article]? Why tear the man down for giving an opinion?

1) Yes, there is something value in the article. It makes the case for Hackworth's insanity beautifully.

2) We're not tearing down Hack for giving an opinion; we're tearing down his opinion itself. Do you understand the distinction?

79 posted on 04/03/2003 6:46:52 PM PST by Mr. Mojo
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To: PJ-Comix
Someone needs to inform Hackworth that it's way passed time for him to shut his mouth about this war.

American lives are on the line and he's not helping at all.

80 posted on 04/03/2003 6:47:17 PM PST by Bullish
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To: PhiKapMom
Lord love a duck, I remember the retired generals in Gulf War I on CNN (hey, it was the only thing we had, remember)?

They had for weeks told us, with maps and smirks, of the battle plans.

And I remember the night that we came by land and not by sea, as they and Saddam thought. To this day, I wish a had a photo of one general's open gaping mouth when he realized that he had been snookered.

LOL
81 posted on 04/03/2003 6:47:45 PM PST by Conservababe (I calls it like I sees it.)
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To: Jorge
Diane Feinstein on Larry King just said that the Plan IS working. Big change from a few days ago when all the naysayers were attacking the Plan.

p.s. For some reason I am having visions of Tattoo yelling: "De Plan, boss, de Plan."
82 posted on 04/03/2003 6:48:37 PM PST by PJ-Comix
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To: elfman2
"God I LOVE seeing that self engrossed media pig go down hard like this! YES!!!"

About a year ago, I posted a comment to one of his self-agrandizing articles wherein I had the audacity to express my considered opinion that he was an arogant ASS.

WOW, you would think I had accused the Pope of child abuse, or hinted that Lee Greenwood was a closet commie. I was damn near kicked off the FR network.

BOY-OH-BOY, do I feel vindicated!

83 posted on 04/03/2003 6:48:52 PM PST by lawdude
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To: mc10
Sad part is that he never missed a beat and if you heard him for the first time you would have thought he thought the world of General Myers and General Franks. Unbelieveable!
84 posted on 04/03/2003 6:49:18 PM PST by PhiKapMom (Get the US out of the UN and the UN out of the US)
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To: Illbay
"I plan to ignore Hackworth in the future."

The moral of this story is: Before you buy into the logic of a retired colonel, give consideration as to why he isn't a retired general.

85 posted on 04/03/2003 6:49:49 PM PST by okie01 (The Mainstream Media: IGNORANCE ON PARADE.)
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To: Conservababe
LOL!!! I had forgotten about that.

Also remember the AF General Dugan who got fired for leaking war plans that ended up on CNN as an analyst. Wanted to throw something at the TV everytime he came on.

86 posted on 04/03/2003 6:51:10 PM PST by PhiKapMom (Get the US out of the UN and the UN out of the US)
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To: jackbill
He seems like a straightshooter. Thanks for the insight. What was Powell like?
87 posted on 04/03/2003 6:51:14 PM PST by The Westerner
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To: PhiKapMom
McCaffrey is a total joke which made his backtracking so funny! Couldn't even stick by his statements when confronted and tried to suck up! He looked even worse than he did when he was trashing!

ROFL! This is too funny.

But let's not "gloat" to much just yet...we still have to take Baghdad.

88 posted on 04/03/2003 6:51:33 PM PST by Jorge
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Now if I remember correctly, I belive we had 6 US divisions that fought the first Gulf, and that's not counting additional coaliton forces.

For the most part we have been operating with 1 infantry division and 1 armored division, not counting coaltion forces, and were still whopping butt. Now we all know that the only reason this war broke the 100hr mark to was to keep Iraqi civilians deaths at a bare minimum.

Funny though how hackysack left those points out.
89 posted on 04/03/2003 6:52:00 PM PST by OriginalV (If any of you sum bit@#s call me grandpa, I'll kill ya)
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To: PJ-Comix
Diane Feinstein on Larry King just said that the Plan IS working.

barf !!!!
90 posted on 04/03/2003 6:52:23 PM PST by 1poedpatriot
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To: lawdude
BOY-OH-BOY, do I feel vindicated!

As well you should. I tore into Hack a few months ago and experienced a similar reaction.

91 posted on 04/03/2003 6:52:56 PM PST by Mr. Mojo
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To: nevergore
This war will remove Col. Hackworth as a credible source of current military strategy and techniques forever....

Among others. I wish we had been keeping a list.

92 posted on 04/03/2003 6:53:43 PM PST by Howlin
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Comment #93 Removed by Moderator

To: Jorge
You are right about Baghdad and we still have hot spots around the Country including in Northern Iraq.

I did hear something interesting on the radio tonight -- seems Saddam rebuilt of lot of Baghdad and it now has wide streets which the analyst said should made it easier for our troops not to get caught in narrow streets and ambushed.
94 posted on 04/03/2003 6:57:18 PM PST by PhiKapMom (Get the US out of the UN and the UN out of the US)
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To: Norse
but as people get old, like he is, the mind starts to shrink, especially in males...

Hey, just a durn minute, that isn't so! Why, I can blidge snarfle zimblividach just as well as I ever...uh...I'd really like some ice cream right now. Do you like ice cream? What time is it?

95 posted on 04/03/2003 7:00:45 PM PST by Billthedrill
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To: PJ-Comix
Obviously, Mr. Hackworth is well-deserving of his family name: he is truly worthy of being called a hack.
96 posted on 04/03/2003 7:07:07 PM PST by Nevermore
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To: The Westerner
He seems like a straightshooter. Thanks for the insight. What was Powell like?

My view of Powell was "go along to get along". We saw, in Gulf War I how timid and how wrong he was.

97 posted on 04/03/2003 7:08:39 PM PST by jackbill (i)
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To: EaglesUpForever; JohnHuang2
Quote of Day Candidate:

I guess if we don't have zero losses, zero civilian casualties (not so much as an injured baby Goat), and the whole opposing country cheering a warm welcome within 24 hours, it's a "hopeless quagmire dwarfing Viet Nam."



98 posted on 04/03/2003 7:11:34 PM PST by Tunehead54 (Saturday April 5, 2003 - Clearwater, FLorida Support Our Troops Rally! Be there!)
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To: PJ-Comix
What an absolutely idiotic column. This definitely gives credence to the earlier FR threads that said Hackworth is a Democrat. I believe it.
99 posted on 04/03/2003 7:15:00 PM PST by ItisaReligionofPeace ((the original))
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To: PJ-Comix
This article is preposterous.

David Hackworth has gone way off the reservation with this rant. Hack seems to forget, the 100 hours of ground combat in the Gulf War was preceeded by 40 days of heavy and intense bombing of Republican Guard units. Operation Iraqi Freedom is only 15 days old and Allied Forces have made significant progress. We are winning this war Hack. Get a grip.

100 posted on 04/03/2003 7:15:25 PM PST by Reagan Man
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