DOOM-MONGERS DEFEATED

DOOM-MONGERS DEFEATED: David Brooks has a scathing analysis of the critics of the war plan:

If you had read the American press last Sunday, Monday and Tuesday, you would have thought the media analysts were covering Napoleon̢۪s retreat from Moscow. There were ludicrous Vietnam comparisons, rampant quagmire forebodings and learned deconstructions of What Went Wrong.

Of course the press is generally over-critical, as part of our constant and pathetic efforts to prove that we are smarter than whoever it is we happen to be covering. But in this case the pundits seemed shocked that the Iraqi Gestapo actually had the audacity to shoot back. And the gloom was reinforced by the anti-war sentiment that prevails in the press rooms. Every flaw in the war-plan set off another round of we-told-you-so gloating.

Brooks reserves his harshest comments for the bureaucratic insiders who sniped at the plan anonymously to promote their political agendas:

With the war inexplicably not over in three days, these fuming desk jockey warriors took their revenge, filling The Washington Post and The New Yorker with anonymous quotations about how Rumsfeld was an idiot and the war planning had been botched. And they were not even as bad as the off-the-record snipers from the intelligence agencies, who wanted everyone to know that whatever the coalition confronted: “We warned them about this.”

Charles Krauthammer weighs in on the subject as well:

For a military establishment as large, mechanized, integrated and complex as America’s to be so nimble in adapting to the tactics of Saddam Hussein’s Baathist die-hard irregulars in southern Iraq is nothing short of astonishing. Why deny it? Take credit for it. This flexibility will have a far more decisive effect on the final outcome than the silly charge that the original blueprint did not perfectly predict the future.

Indeed. Both pieces are worth a read. (Hat tip: RCP)

FILED UNDER: Iraq War
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.