‘Success in Iraq is No Accident’. Yes, SUCCESS!

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    21st April 2010

    Since some of our filmmakers, book-writers, journalists, peacenik nutters, commenters and political analysts continue to hound Tony Blair (though not George W Bush to anything like the same extent) for his and Britain’s involvement in Iraq, I have a suggestion.  Before we peace ‘n’ loving ‘caring’ citizens arrest and charge the guy, then drag him to The Hague, after which formalities we’ll hang him or show some compassion and let him off with a touch of everyday liberal torture (as he clearly deserves) it’s worth dropping this information into the mix.

    It’s an article by Fox’s Mike Baker, a former CIA agent. In my humble opinion we Brits, should still be helping the Americans to help the Iraqi people. Instead, once Blair was safely disposed of, Gordon Brown took his usual weasely way out – his hands-off  Tony’s War – game. We made as speedy an exit as was decent. In Basra the guidance and assistance of our forces was legendary and largely appreciated. Our departure from Basra was hugely controversial. We were, as we still are as regards Iraq, dealing with an unsympathetic press. As with the Americans in Vietnam, if our war in Basra was lost, it was not due to military defeat, but to public opinion.  Blair may have remained unbowed to the end as regards his decision and God knows he has suffered for that. But our departure was the press’s doing, not simply the populist expediency of Gordon Brown, the man who wrote about “courage”.

    By the way, does a ‘hole in the ground – Tikrit’ sound familiar. It is.

    Success In Iraq No Accident

    By Mike Baker, FOXNews.com

    There’s good news in the deaths of two top terrorists in Iraq that goes beyond simply removing murderers from the planet.

    Job security isn’t what it used to be for terrorists in Iraq. U.S. and Iraqi officials announced on Monday that the two top leaders of Al Qaeda in Iraq were hunted down and killed in a week long operation near Tikrit. Abu Ayyub Al-Masri, the leader of Al Qaeda in Iraq and his murdering cohort Abu Omar al-Baghdadi were discovered in a hole in the ground during a combined Iraqi-US military and intelligence operation. There’s a satisfying synergy to learning that these two butchers were found in a hole in the ground.

    It is especially important to note that the operation’s success involved the Iraqi military and intelligence service, supported by U.S. personnel. This was not the U.S. acting on its own, or with a token level of assistance by Iraqi elements. A success story over the past couple of years has been the ability of the Iraqi military and intel organization to assume responsibility for security operations. Over the past year in particular, the Iraqis have shown an increasing ability to target and degrade the Al Qaeda in Iraq structure.

    Admittedly a long time in the making, the training and building of the Iraqi forces has always been seen as a critical component of the effort to create a stable and democratic post-Hussein Iraq.

    That effort has been quietly moving forward as other aspects of Iraq, notably the dysfunctional nature of its politics, have garnered more press. But all the while, with occasional frustrations and setbacks, the Iraqi forces have been gaining experience, confidence and trust.

    The public has improved its perception of the home team and that has allowed further success, as the population proves more willing to work with the military in combating terrorism and violent elements. This cooperation and relative goodwill will be crucial in the comings months as continuing political discord following the recent elections will test the country’s ability to not backslide into sectarian violence.

    It’s a work in progress to be sure. But there’s good news in the deaths of two top terrorists that goes beyond simply removing murderers from the planet. Its a story of hard fought success and the promise of stability for the future when the Iraqis once again are on their own.

    Mike Baker served for more than 15 years as a covert field operations officer for the Central Intelligence Agency, specializing in counterterrorism, counternarcotics and counterinsurgency operations around the globe. Since leaving government service, he has been a principal in building and running several companies in the private intelligence, security and risk management sector and has recently returned to Diligence LLC, a company he cofounded in 2000, as President. He appears frequently in the media as an expert on counterterrorism, intelligence and homeland security. Baker is also a partner in Classified Trash, a film and television production company. Baker serves as a script consultant, writer and technical adviser within the entertainment industry, lending his expertise to such programs as the BBC’s popular spy series “Spooks,” as well as major motion pictures.

    Fox Forum is on Twitter. Follow us @fxnopinion.


    UPDATE – Interpol issues arrest warrant against Saddam’s daughter

    1. War in Iraq  – a remarkable Success

    2. As I mentioned here the other day on Iraq:


    It would ALL have happened with or without Blair and Britain. On the bad side – insurgents would have been still murdering their own (as they continue to do to try to scare off the Americans as they have us Brits). And on the good side – democracy would still be taking strong roots in Iraq, with all that that brings. As for the ugly – we’ve got that already – our very own beloved ‘liberal’ press.

    What Good stuff? For instance –

    None of this, the good fallout, has anything to do with Tony Blair of course, does it?

    One of these days I WILL, I promise, add another excerpt to the below. What have you done to deserve this, you might be asking.  Seen Polanski’s ‘The Ghost’?  Now that’s really stretching credibility gullibility.

    À la mode of Harris & Polanski – TRUE FICTION – ‘The Prime Minister’s Mistress’ and The Prime Minister’s Mistress (‘Labyrinto’) … continued (Part 2)

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    16 Responses to “‘Success in Iraq is No Accident’. Yes, SUCCESS!”

    1. Little Ole American Says:

      Good post. I would like to see the British press acknowledge the fantastic job the British Troops did in training the Iraqi Security Forces, but then, they might have to admit they should not have pulled their troops out before they were allowed to complete the mission, they would have to admit the Troops made a positive impact in Iraq, and last but not least, they would have to admit it was the right thing to do to go into Iraq in the first place. Well, I just did it for them.
      BTW, a woman is being investigated for possible terrorism; seems she is a daughter of one Saddam Hussein. Hmmmm?

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        Thank you, Little Ole American. Btw, on Sky news earlier I saw a troop ship which had picked up several hundred British nationalists – holidaymakers who were stuck in Spain due to the volcano ash.

        So we saw the troops landing. Probably wouldn’t have had any cameras there if it weren’t for the holiday-makers being stranded. We Brits always get our priorities right, don’t we?


        Haven’t seen anything here about this Saddam woman. Got a link?

        Update – found this on her.

    2. Questions over ‘Question Time’, Alastair Campbell and David Laws « Tony Blair Says:

      […] the undoing of Cameron’s party. Ms Moore needs to remind herself how many Tories voted for the success that was the Iraq war. The Lib Dems voted for the “disaster” that they reckon it […]

    3. Steve Vickers Says:

      That’s a fairly weak ‘vindication’!? One article from a questionable source and the whole farce/bloodbath is a success?!

      Along with trying to work out, Iraq aside, what our execrable former leader did for this country prior to going off selling handbags and insurance, I do wonder if you suffer from delusional problems? Could you tell me what he did which makes you, an intelligent person from what I can make out, give him your unswerving loyalty against the HUGE groundswell of opinion against? I can’t find a single person from my social and business circle who voted for him in ’97 who is not downright appalled at the disappointment and realisation they were manipulated by his doe-eyed media presence and lying. I spoilt my vote btw.

      As for Iraq, I can only surmise that you know nothing of the history of the region and our support for Saddam, even while he was being murderous, as long as he was doing our bidding. As soon as that stopped, he was suddenly a terrible, murderous dictator. Our great and good only have problems with human rights issues when they are committed by non-client dictators…

    4. Stan Says:

      Mr Vickers, the huge groundswell of opinion against Blair is largely made up of unthinking people like you who are easily swayed by the hate propaganda put out by Blair’s enemies in the media.

      Those of us who can think for ourselves see things very differently.

    5. Steve Vickers Says:

      Please be assured that I do very much think for myself. I rarely watch television as I find it’s influence corrosive and refuse to be told what to do and think by Murdoch et al. I have no particular leanings when it comes to a newspaper as long as it isn’t the Mail or similar tabloid. I prefer to read books, when work permits.

      What I have taken a huge amount of trouble to learn and comprehend is the history of the middle east due to my work, and for self interest.

      Iraq aside, I was against the demagogue from the outset when the press, especially Murdoch and his rags, loved him to bits. I could see he was only really interested in himself and power for the sake of power. Not a single principle in sight. Just self interest.

      I mainly play devils advocate but I can’t with the Machiavellian little shit.

      Apart from insulting my thinking, you still fail to tell me why he has your unswerving loyalty?

    6. little ole American Says:

      It is amazing how the British MEDIA is out to “get” Blair. Once you get outside of Britain, you find people all over the world, who respect and admire Tony Blair. When you read the British press, you’d think he was the devil himself. The fact of the matter is, these anti-Blairs are in the minority (yet, they will not question their own “righteousness”.) What they cannot seem to see is that when they insult and condemn Tony Blair, they are aligning themselves with the opinions of terrorists and radical clerics, who would REALLY like to see him dead because of his diplomatic efforts in Gaza and in his efforts to bring ALL religions of the world together.
      I wonder, if Tony Blair were still Prime Minister of Britain, would you still be installing Sharia-approved toilets? Would you still have kicked Geert Wilders and Michael Savage out of the country, in complete opposition to your freedom of speech? Would you stil be closing your “public” swimming pools for a “Muslim only day”? I can’t answer that, but I know we have the same battle coming to the states, with the proposed building of a Mosque near the site of 9/11. We have the same battle with our present administration, with the POTUS bowing to Saudi princes and apologizing for “our policies” all over the Muslim world.
      I gotta tell ya, since Tony Blair and George W. Bush have been out of political office, we all look like a bunch of kiss-asses. At least when these two men were in office, we knew who we were and what we stood for. Now, all is chaos and mass confusion. It seems like prime time for those who are hell-bent on destroying us. The left-wing press and its sheep are enabling the enemies of Western Freedoms, to succeed. They are in “Bad Company”.

    7. Steve Vickers Says:

      I seem to remember how pre Iraq, and even up to the debacle that was post Iraq (the lack of post invasion planning per Rumsfeld, the lack of WMD or ANY collusion with Al Qaeda) the press were very pro Blair and invasion, it is only since it has been proved to be a disaster that they have, rather objectively for once, condemned Blair.

      The rest of your comments demonstrate a willful and woeful ignorance of world affairs, the Bush family and Carlyle group relations with Saudi etc. Then again, little ole american as a name sums that up doesn’t it. Got a passport, jesus saved you?….

    8. Steve Vickers Says:

      Clegg told the truth on Iraq. It’s for Cameron to end a decade of pretence

      The coalition inherited a mendacious foreign policy, leading to two disastrous wars. Time now for an honourable peace

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      * Simon Jenkins
      o Simon Jenkins
      o guardian.co.uk, Thursday 22 July 2010 21.00 BST
      o Article history

      This is a Downing Street “clarification”. When the deputy prime minister says illegal, he means legal. When he says disastrous, he means brilliant. When he says black, he is fumbling for the word white.

      On Wednesday Nick Clegg stood at the dispatch box and described the Iraq war as “the most disastrous decision of all” and the invasion of Iraq as “illegal”. Downing Street hurriedly explained that what he actually meant was that the invasion was a triumph of British arms and as lawful as driven snow.

      Earlier in the week, the head of MI5 at the time of the war, Lady Manningham-Buller, had vindicated Clegg’s statement. So, too, had earlier evidence from Lord Goldsmith, the then attorney general. To Downing Street, this was of no matter. Clegg was caught between the whirring flywheel of truth and the crashing gears of a mendacious diplomacy. He was torn to shreds.

      The Liberal Democrat leader appears to have come unqualified to the task of high office. When pushed against the wall by the arch-warmonger, Jack Straw, he showed himself a serial truth-teller. While this handicap may not be insuperable at home, in foreign affairs it is a killer. Clegg was supposed to lie under political torture, and failed.

      David Cameron, who is intelligent enough to agree with Clegg, was in a difficult position. He was visiting Barack Obama in Washington at the time. He knows, with the US president, that Afghanistan is the next most disastrous decision after Iraq. The two men can say that in private, but not in public. There they have to present Afghanistan as a great victory for Nato, a triumph of liberal interventionism. Britain and the US are marching to war shoulder to shoulder against Johnny Taliban and the mussulmen. Defeat is not an option.

      Cameron and Obama have emerged from this first bilateral meeting as sensible men who must somehow navigate their respective ways from an inherited war to an honourable peace, amid a western foreign policy that has spent a decade drenched in sophistry.

      Commentators are often asked to predict history’s verdict on a particular era, and are well advised to decline. But it is hard not to see western policy in the first decade of the 21st century as sunk in a morass of folly. It was subcontracted to a defence lobby desperate for a role, which it found in exploiting weak leaders by playing on the ideology of fear.

      As a result, at the end of the decade western states found themselves spending more money to become less safe, with their global interests more at risk than at the start. The legacy of the victory over communism was squandered. In Britain, policy failed the Ernie Bevin test, that a citizen should be able to buy a ticket at Victoria station and go anywhere he damn well pleases.

      This has applied not just to the blood-thirsty horrors of Iraq and Afghanistan. It has applied to the stance taken against other peoples opposed to these wars, such as Iran and Pakistan. It has led the US and Britain into contentious relations with the entire Muslim world, fuelling anti-western sentiment not only across Asia but, as Manningham-Buller pointed out, among Muslim populations within the west. The last decade has seen an entire foreign policy elite lose the art of friendship. Bred under the communist threat, the west’s leaders craved a mighty enemy and found it by exaggerating the threat from militant Islam and elevating terrorist gangs to the status of state enemies.

      As a result, British policy has relied on one outdated premise after another. It relies on the collective security of Nato, long detached from its supposed purpose and entombed in the citadels of Kabul. It relies on Trident submarine missiles, on an “out of area” fleet and on aerial combat jets, all archaic cold war deterrents. It has an obsession with nuclear weapons that has bred an equal obsession in countries that lack them. Yet it can barely afford a helicopter.

      The enmity of states has given rise to the deployment of other counter-productive crudities, such as sanctions on Iran, trade barriers against the developing world and the exchange of rhetorical abuse, beloved of George Bush and his amanuensis, Tony Blair. These two seemed at times to mimic Plato’s tyrants, “always stirring up some war or other in order that the people may require a leader”.

      The past decade has been an age of pretence, of the US pretending to police the world, of Britain pretending to be its deputy, of Europe pretending to be America, of Russia pretending to an empire, and of China pretending wealth can substitute for democracy. Europe’s Lisbon treaty pretended it could fashion a new state from the crooked timber of Europe’s national identities and economies, bringing the common currency close to collapse.

      Bush and Blair treated the world as an enemy – “He who is not with us is against us”. From French surrender monkeys to Chinese traders, from Latin American drug growers to British computer hackers, from international lawyers to UN mediators, every alien was a suspect foe. Foreign policy lurched into paranoid mode. Guantánamo filled with victims and ludicrous sums were spent on security. The world responded in kind. Airports became nests of xenophobia.

      This was nowhere better demonstrated than in Blair’s dreadful January appearance before the Chilcot inquiry, which now meekly claims to be unconcerned with the legality of the Iraq war (so what is it concerned with?). All evidence has testified that the war was a mistake and undermined Britain’s security. Blair’s contradictory display of pro-war self-delusion, arrogance and folly should be a textbook video for any school of 21st-century statesmanship.

      Though Cameron’s public remarks on foreign policy so far have seemed reactionary, especially on the war, he learns fast, and is comfortable at summits and in bilateral encounters. His preamble to this week’s successful visit to Washington rejected the past emphasis on a special relationship and recognised that Britain was a “junior partner” but a partner “of choice”. It had its own view of the world. Subsequent confused signals over an Afghanistan withdrawal have hinted that Britain may at last realise some leverage over US war policy.

      Everyone wants to leave Afghanistan, the only question being how and when. Britain has more than a stake in this. To leave only the US hopelessly fighting the Taliban would visit on Washington an even lonelier defeat than is implied by the current talk of a phased withdrawal. Obama is on a painful hook. It is for Britain to help him off it without the senseless slaughter of more soldiers.

      The prize before these two leaders is now great, of bringing the mendacious bravado of the past decade into line with reality on the ground. It is to end two unnecessary wars and rebuild trust with a Muslim world that has no more interest in the pestilence of terror than does the west. It is to accept that the world is not a place of blocs but of individual states, each with divergent interests and fears. It is to realise colossal savings in defence spending and to shift the emphasis of foreign policy from state-sponsored paranoia to global trade and prosperity.

      Clegg is right. So if Cameron cannot yet tell the truth, he can at least mean what Clegg says.

      Now you can hardly say that Simon Jenkins is left wing or a ‘troofer’ as you like to call them…

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        Quoting Simon Jenkins does NOT raise your credibility.

        Clegg was WRONG, WRONG, WRONG on Iraq. Blair was right. As was Bush. It’s international politics, dontcha know, not Lib Dem “localism”.

    9. Steve Vickers Says:

      Great rational arguing there, the brevity and reasoning is outstanding. I’ll try that next week at work.

      • keeptonyblairforpm Says:

        Mr Vickers,

        The brevity is in line with what is deserved. The reasoning is beyond your comprehension, as my vicar used to say about other things.

        The arguments from one side will NEVER convince the other side. Too many all-knowing minds already made up. ALL the arguments (that we know of) and there may well be unknown unknows that we don’t of, are online. Most of them used here at this blog, and searchable.

        Some of us have better things to do than conspire to counter conspiracy freaks.

    10. Stan Says:

      Mr Vickers, you haven’t showed much evidence of thinking for yourself. One sign of this would be to actually address the points made in this post instead of just rehashing stuff put out by others.

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