Anti-War Propaganda Illustrated!

About: more of Seth's war propaganda & bush bashing

     Something you folks don't generally acknowledge is that war is different from building a computer, a space shuttle or a batch of pumpkin pies. War is unpredictable & the enemy gets a vote. The war in Iraq is different from previous wars in that the enemy looks just like the rest of the civilians in that country. Also, unlike the enemy, the US takes as much care as possible not to kill civilians - even though sometimes we do by mistake.  It would be much more predictable if we could just drop bombs like we did in WW-II on whole cities. Most of this Bush explained or alluded to in his address or others.  Rebuilding a whole country from the remnants of a dictatorship is not so simple as running for congress from your home district.

     Please, Seth,  ponder something deeper than gotchas.  I don't see anything in 4767  (or any of Seth's other items) that shows that he has any new ideas that will help the effort in Iraq at all.


I brought this back out of hiding because 4767 seems to go on & on & on for a purpose that the author refuses to acknowledge. War can't be confined like a project plan for a piece of software or a batch of pumpkin pies. As long as there is a process that has appropriate feedback mechanisms in it which is leading to the overall strategic goal I call that good.  Everything else is arguing about rhetoric & semantics during an election cycle by people who have never been to war or who are otherwise compromised in their thinking!



Tags

  1. bush bashing
  2. rwg
  3. normal conversation

Comments


Mark de LA says
On the other hand if you cherry pick your information you can make a cause & argument for anything!

Mark de LA says
If you narrow a topic small enough you will probably find out there is nothing there AT ALL!

Seth says
Mark, obviously i know this is a asymmetrical war and that war is unpredictable.  My inquiry node, that you have misrepresented above, is about the administrations new use of  the term "benchmarks".  I cannot find a thing in your comment that is about benchmarks. 

There, however, is one connection between the unpredictability of war and benchmarks.  Benchmarks are usually used to measure progress against a passive situation ... one that does not fight back.  Bush mentioed in his press conference not to use some offensive of the enemy as an excuse to pull out and that makes sense to me.  As far as i can see this new "benchmarks" stuff is just political rhetoric designed to answer democratic critics.  But i laud the effort to establish goals and agree upon them.  Me thinks that the POTUS's message would have had more of a ring of integrity had he just said that the US was working with Maliki to agree on a set of goals and  windows in which those goals were to be achieved.  Perhaps Rumy will shed more light on these new "benchmarks" at his Pentagon briefing today at 1:15.

Mark de LA says
You deleted the stuff I wrote about benchmarks, milestones (which was my preferred term), goals (which is the overall strategy & purpose - well stated in the speech, etc. You should ponder what the difference is. Unfortunately current politics picks holes in the semantics of everything. Milestones is the best word to describe a progress point that doesn't have a drop-dead date (deadline). You are arguing semantics too!

Seth says
Mark 2006-10-26 09:00:52 4770
You deleted the stuff I wrote about benchmarks, milestones (which was my preferred term), goals (which is the overall strategy & purpose - well stated in the speech, etc. You should ponder what the difference is. Unfortunately current politics picks holes in the semantics of everything. Milestones is the best word to describe a progress point that doesn't have a drop-dead date (deadline). You are arguing semantics too!
I deleted it because i cant figure out what connection it has to my inquiry.  "benchmarks" is a word that the administration has started using in their political messages to the American people.  What do they mean by it?  What the dictionary tells us, what you think the words mean as per the definition, or what i think (my prefered word is goals), does not shed any light on what they mean by this new usage. Please don't trun this into a rwg about me and you.  It is about what the administration is using the word "benchmarks" to mean. 

Mark de LA says
You are STILL arguing semantics. You still refuse to acknowledge the distinctions I made about those words. I have been using those words for years in professional project management & other contexts. I know what they mean. I suspect that POTUS & the DOD are using them similarly.  Substituting your word "goals" and collapsing the distinction between goals & benchmarks is where you get in trouble. 


Seth says
Mark 2006-10-26 09:19:59 4770
You are STILL arguing semantics. You still refuse to acknowledge the distinctions I made about those words. I have been using those words for years in professional project management & other contexts. I know what they mean. I suspect that POTUS & the DOD are using them similarly.  Substituting your word "goals" and collapsing the distinction between goals & benchmarks is where you get in trouble. 

I don't know, perhaps i missed it .. but i still do not see the salient point that you are bringing up.  POTUS used the word "benchmarks" did he not?  He did not use the term "milestones" or did he?  He did not use the term "goals" that i remember.  Yet when we look for what these thingies are the best we can come up with are what i would call a "goal".  A goal does not have a deadline ... even a milestone does not have a deadline ... and a benchmark does not have a deadline.  The term "timetable" (which has been used) does imply that a time is given but it sounds much weaker.   Obviously POTUS wants to avoid stating a deadline.  I can usderstand how stating deadlines and even publishing specific goals is pulling your punches to the enemy.  What are you saying that goes beyond this.  What am i missing?

And, yes, this is all semantics ... analyzing word usage and propaganda is semantics.

Mark de LA says
What would Seth's inquiry mean other than to further the left's anti-war story line if he acknowledged that war is not subject to deadlines & timelines.  see:
source: ...
"Our mission is to help the elected government in Iraq defeat common enemies, to bring peace and stability to Iraq and make our nation more secure," he said. "Our goals are unchanging. We are flexible in our methods toward achieving those goals."
... here is another word to be confused about - mission.

Mark de LA says
So then, don't collapse the word goal with the word benchmark. In normal technical discourse, probably extensible, a benchmark is something you measure something against.

Seth says
Mark 2006-10-26 09:38:15 4770
What would Seth's inquiry mean other than to further the left's anti-war story line if he acknowledged that war is not subject to deadlines & timelines. 
Yep war is not subject to deadlines and timelines.  What does POTUS mean by "benchmarks" ?

Seth says
source: World Updates: Iraqi PM sees peace in 6 months - if U.S. cooperates
In sharp criticism of the handling of Iraq's security by the United States, Nuri al-Maliki denied U.S. assertions he was working to a timetable of steps agreed with Washington.
... compare that to ...
source: Bush
... we're working with the Iraqi government to have certain benchmarks to meet as a way to determine whether or not they're making the hard decisions necessary to achieve peace ...
... we're working closely with the government to be able to say, here's what's going to happen then, here's what we expect to happen now, here's what should be expected in the future.
Me thinks that Maliki has embarassed POTUS.  Either they are agreeing on these benchmarks or they are not.

Mark de LA says
seth 2006-10-26 09:47:22 4770
Mark 2006-10-26 09:38:15 4770
What would Seth's inquiry mean other than to further the left's anti-war story line if he acknowledged that war is not subject to deadlines & timelines. 
Yep war is not subject to deadlines and timelines.  What does POTUS mean by "benchmarks" ?
It probably would have helped to watch the conference more carefully.

Mark de LA says
seth 2006-10-26 10:12:20 4770
source: World Updates: Iraqi PM sees peace in 6 months - if U.S. cooperates
In sharp criticism of the handling of Iraq's security by the United States, Nuri al-Maliki denied U.S. assertions he was working to a timetable of steps agreed with Washington.
... compare that to ...
source: Bush
... we're working with the Iraqi government to have certain benchmarks to meet as a way to determine whether or not they're making the hard decisions necessary to achieve peace ...
... we're working closely with the government to be able to say, here's what's going to happen then, here's what we expect to happen now, here's what should be expected in the future.
Me thinks that Maliki has embarassed POTUS.  Either they are agreeing on these benchmarks or they are not.
It's more complicated than that. Maliki is playing politics with the Shiites. Madhi has his own army. Madhi is a Shiite as just like Maliki. Madhi is responsible for a lot of the civil strife. Trying to get rid of the independent militia is political or real suicide. Either Maliki has no spine or he has to play ball with the Shiites against the Sunni.  Notice that these are all Islamists.
Notice that the Kurds who are also Islamists who can take care of themselves & don't seem to wage war against the other 2 major factions.

What POTUS said in the press conference is that he had not read the full translation of what Maliki had said, but he did not believe in any disagreement.  I speculate that this is a case of the US forces being more efficient at destroying the troublemakers than was politically acceptable.

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