in Friday's Wall Street Journal looked back at last spring's
Topoff2 drill, which simulated
a biological attack in Chicago and a dirty bombing in Seattle.
May was a big month for gloating, you'll recall, and Topoff2 was
one of many encores in the Bush apotheosis
extravaganza. Where have all the good times gone?
the time of the exercise, officials were quick to praise Topoff2…Homeland
Security Secretary Tom Ridge and Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich
pronounced the drill a tremendous success. Since then, officials
have toned down their enthusiasm: Michael D. Brown, a deputy of
Mr. Ridge, told Congress recently that Topoff2 'revealed several
areas for improvement.'"
a diplomatic way to describe stunning failures in "one of the
most heavily scripted drills ever staged." Chicago hospitals were
told what disease to expect; Seattle coordinators "knew weeks
in advance the exact time and location of the 'dirty bomb.'" The
White House prepared its responses in advance and read the lines
as they were written.
happened? Personnel, equipment, and information got lost in leviathan's
bowels. Homeland Security's color-coded alert system caused two
days' worth of confusion. Untold numbers of pretend victims died
fake horrible deaths in the government's own PR stunt.
hey, no use dwelling on the past, or even the present, for that
matter. So terrorists can still
smuggle uranium past Customs and sneak bombs and box cutters onto
planes with ease. So what? So what if the war on Iraq is a
disaster? As an opinion
piece in Friday's Journal put it, "Instead of focusing
on how to win the war we are now engaged in, [critics of the administration]
want to refight the argument over how we got in."
that's bad. What's done is done. Don't cry over spilled milk.
Let's all pull together and win this one for the boss.
sure, but almost convincing. Until Wesley Clark invents
time travel and we peaceniks can go back and avert Gulf War
II, why dispute the arguments for a mission accomplished
six months ago? Are we going to be part of the problem, or
part of the solution?
if "problem" means "opposition to imperial lunacy," then I, for
one, plan to be part of it. That the hawks want us to ignore the
proof while we're drowning in the pudding is understandable. The
war was not won by defeating the Iraqi army; if anything, the
war has gotten worse since it "ended." Spring's boasts have soured
as fall's bodies and bills arrive on American doorsteps. But the
hawks need to divorce the war from the occupation in order to
save their meaningless victory from its awful consequences. So
they call for bipartisanship, they implore us to think of the
future, they upbraid the obstructionists, they do everything but
explain how today is not the tomorrow we once warned them about.
be fooled. The war debate rages on because Iraq is just the beginning.
Enlist in the Bush corps now even for the noblest of reasons and,
many reservists, you'll be in for more than you ever imagined.
~ Matthew Barganier
recent column by Matthew Barganier
Refighting the Good Fight
Defends General Boykin, Rumsfeld
You Got, Like, Totally Plamed
a Meaningful Yom Kippur
Every Person Should Know About War
Argument, Meet Matt Welch
Dean Is a Warmonger
a Blackout, Dimwits Are Easy to Spot
if You Lived There?
Autumn of the Patriarchs
Will Timothy McVeigh Strike Next?
Blair Polling Well in Hell's Eighth Circle
I'll Be Celebrating on the Fourth
Needs a Gore News Channel
Sharon, Tear Down Those Empty Mobile Homes!
WMDs? Fabulous, but Still Beside the Point
All Israelis Now Except for the Palestinians
the Cynicism Begin!
Guest Column from National Review
Aural MOAB for the Middle East
Barganier works for an educational philanthropy in Baton Rouge,
LA. A late bloomer in his mid-twenties, he has only recently joined
the ranks of web punditry. He is an alumnus of Louisiana State
University and the University of Alabama.