Monday, May 21, 2007

Lily Pads

Renee Montagne leads off this story on permanent US bases in Iraq with
"Two factors may determine the course of the war in Iraq — one is political progress inside Iraq and in a moment we’ll check up on efforts to share oil money. The other factor is American public opinion."
(Oh and Renee there's that insignificant factor of the Iraqi people - they do get in the way by the hundreds of thousands, don't they? And the insurgents, and foreign fighters, and monumental US arrogance and stupidity).

After this NPR's Guy gets down to explaining what the War Department sees in its crystal ball:
"...the key term I keep hearing is lily pads...what it essentially envisions is a series of military installations around Iraq, maybe five or six of them, a total of between 30,000 or 40,000 US troops in Iraq for a long period of time—lasting you know maybe a few decades. And the idea is that these bases will be somewhat hermetically sealed....and these sort of lily pads will be in various strategic areas in Iraq...and that will enable the US military to maintain a presence in the country perhaps as I say for a few decades"(!!!)
What on earth can you say to this? Lily pads? Few decades? You have to love how Guy just picks up this Pentagonese and makes it his own. Oh well, if you can't beat them, then let's just find some other nice names for these crusader fortresses:

How about swim rafts? That has a relaxing feel?

Or maybe doilies on the dinner table?

Perhaps oil rigs? Oops maybe not.


jules said...

What's really SPECIAL is that 40,000 troops can do wonders where 160,000 couldn't!

Kevan Smith said...

But they'll be "hermetically sealed!"

Willie said...

Ha! Oil rigs, very good.

At least NPR is mentioning permanent bases, even if they go along with seeing them as inevitable, almost natural.

Let's hope that this latest major attempt in Iraq to add to the squatting U.S. empire doesn't work. But, eventually, it probably will, however painfully for the people who live there. Soon enough they'll be little towns set up near the bases to service the servicemen, full of Americanized bars and local prostitutes. As Chalmers Johnson explains so well, we have over 700 military "installations" around the globe (in over 100 countries), so what's a few more?

Porter Melmoth said...

You can see how a certain element in the American culture is fascinated and seduced by Empire. The glory of it all, just the idea of it, not the realities - that's what hooks people. Another Chalmers reference: America is sacrificing its democracy for Empire.
'Hermetically sealed' bases will fool dumbed-down Americans into the notion that we aren't REALLY an empire. Beware the terms bandied about. A big part of the crap shoot of the Bush Administration is that they're going for Empire NOW, before someone else gets the prizes... I think that was a BIG incentive behind invading Iraq, not the laughable Wolfowitless ‘idealism’ of bringing democracy to the benighted or the WMD burlesque…
Call me ‘over the top’, but are they kidding with this crap . . . ?