Monday, March 27, 2006

Delta top-sergeant calls "bullshit" on the Chickenhawks

Eric Haney, now a Hollywood consultant, was a founding sergeant in the Delta Force, the legendary, semi-secret counter-terrorism and exfiltration commando unit.

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For a good description of the ferocity, courage, and effectiveness of the D-Boys in action, see Mark Bowden's superb Black Hawk Down, but at all costs avoid Ridley Scott's contemptible, simplistic, exploitative, and racist film of the same name.

Command Sergeant Haney is calling "bullshit" on the Chickenhawks and their failed war. The difference is, he's a real warrior, and he's not afraid of those armchair imperialists and cowardly careerists back in DC. His very first Q&A in the interview runs like this:

Q: What's your assessment of the war in Iraq?

A: Utter debacle. But it had to be from the very first. The reasons were wrong. The reasons of this administration for taking this nation to war were not what they stated. (Army Gen.) Tommy Franks was brow-beaten and ... pursued warfare that he knew strategically was wrong in the long term. That's why he retired immediately afterward. His own staff could tell him what was going to happen afterward.

We have fomented civil war in Iraq. We have probably fomented internecine war in the Muslim world between the Shias and the Sunnis, and I think Bush may well have started the third world war, all for their own personal policies.

But that really, barely, begins to cover the damning indictment he provides. Read the whole article, and note this nugget about Dick Cheney's pet program:
Q: What do you make of the torture debate? Cheney ...

A: (Interrupting) That's Cheney's pursuit. The only reason anyone tortures is because they like to do it. It's about vengeance, it's about revenge, or it's about cover-up. You don't gain intelligence that way. Everyone in the world knows that. It's worse than small-minded, and look what it does.... I ask, who would you want to pay to be a torturer? Do you want someone that the American public pays to torture? He's an employee of yours. It's worse than ridiculous. It's criminal; it's utterly criminal. ... Debating what constitutes torture: Mistreatment of helpless people in your power is torture, period. And (I'm saying this as) a man who has been involved in the most pointed of our activities. I know it, and all of my mates know it. You don't do it. It's an act of cowardice.

So there we have it. A real soldier--the kind of man who parachutes into enemy strongholds with 2 or 3 other companions and kills in order to save lives--has confirmed that the USA is led by people who torture because they like it.

Thank you, Sergeant. Let's see how swiftly the keyboard commandos and the armchair imperialists try to Swift-boat you.

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