Sunday, November 12, 2006
into my arms, oh lord:
Nick Cave is as brilliant as Doug Feith is dimwitted. Consider this:
Rumsfeld's drive to modernize created a revealing contrast between his Pentagon and the State Department, where Colin Powell was highly popular among the staff. After four years of Powell's tenure at State, the organization chart there would hardly tip anyone off that 9/11 had occurred -- or even that the Cold War was over.
Now consider this:
"One of the principal strategic thoughts underlying our strategy in the war on terrorism is the importance of the connection between terrorist organizations and their state sponsors," Undersecretary of Defense for Policy Douglas Feith explained to Nicholas Lemann of The New Yorker shortly before the invasion of Iraq. "Terrorist organizations cannot be effective in sustaining themselves over long periods of time to do large-scale operations if they don't have support from states. They need a base of operations. They need other types of assets that they get from their connection with their state sponsors--whether it's funding, or headquarters, or, in some cases, the use of diplomatic pouches and other types of facilities."
It gets worse. Feith continues,

If an ideologue is someone to whom the facts don't matter, then Rumsfeld is the opposite of an ideologue. He insists that briefings for him be full of facts, thoughtfully organized and rigorously sourced. He demands that facts at odds with his key policy assumptions be brought to his attention immediately. "Bad news never gets better with time," he says, and berates any subordinate who fails to rush forward to him with such news. He does not suppress bad news; he acts on it.

Ken Adelman, meanwhile, agonizes to Jeff Goldberg:

Adelman said that Rumsfeld didn’t take to the message well. “He was in deep denial—deep, deep denial. And then he did a strange thing. He did fifteen or twenty minutes of posing questions to himself, and then answering them. He made the statement that we can only lose the war in America, that we can’t lose it in Iraq. And I tried to interrupt this interrogatory soliloquy to say, ‘Yes, we are actually losing the war in Iraq.’ He got upset and cut me off. He said, ‘Excuse me,’ and went right on with it.”

Finally, consider what sort of idiot would write this: "And as my high school teachers drummed into my head, the best literature reveals that humans are complex." Apparently the sort of idiot who could be appointed undersecretary of defense for policy.
--Spencer Ackerman
Feith has these pseudo-highbrow pretensions that come out in every interview he gives, it's really hilarious:

Rumsfeld is a bundle of paradoxes, like a fascinating character in a work of epic literature.

"I have read these works of epic literature, and own many fine leather-bound editions of them. I keep them in my library, which is paneled with rich mahogany."

Blogger Matt | 2:48 PM