Thursday, January 27, 2005

Glass House meet Trebuchet full of Boulders

Such is the irony of this column from Max Boot in today's LA Times when writing about Sy Hersch.

It's hard to know why anyone would take seriously a "reporter" whose writings are so full of, in Ted Kennedy's words, "maliciousness and innuendo." That Hersh remains a revered figure in American journalism suggests that the media have yet to recover from the paranoid style of the 1960s.

So Boot thinks that Hersch has a history of gross inaccuracies and of being wrong.

Oh, Max, Max, Max, poor sweet deluded Max:

May 5, 2003, on the question of how many troops we are going to need in occupied Iraq:

This means using American troops to secure all of Iraq. It will be insufficient to set up a peacekeeping force whose authority extends only to the capital. It will be unacceptable to say that peacekeeping is not a job for the U.S. military. Since the United States is committed to a "unitary" Iraq, it will have to commit sufficient force to make this a reality. This probably will not require the 200,000 troops suggested by Army chief of staff Eric Shinseki, but it will require a long-term commitment of at least 60,000 to 75,000 soldiers, the number estimated by Joint Staff planners.

Oh damn, well anybody can be wrong about one thing.

May 7, 2003:

WHAT IS the greatest danger facing America as it tries to rebuild Iraq: Shiite fundamentalism? Kurdish separatism? Sunni intransigence? Turkish, Syrian, Iranian or Saudi Arabian meddling?

All of those are real problems, but none is so severe that it can't readily be handled. More than 125,000 American troops occupy Mesopotamia. They are backed up by the resources of the world's richest economy. In a contest for control of Iraq, America can outspend and outmuscle any competing faction.

Okay, well that one doesn't sound too good either, but surely you cannot find more than that within the next minute Mr. B-Level Blogboy?

September 15, 2003

Yet the world press, which lavished such attention on Iraqi looting back in May, seems largely indifferent to the successful work of rebuilding that has gone on since. The media naturally focus on bombings and shootings, not on the reopening of schools or training of police officers. There is a real danger of another Tet Offensive--an American military victory turned into a public relations disaster back home.

Actually, Max I think they've been a little preoccupied since your story of the story of all those trained police officers getting blown up, or going over to the insurgents.

Well, that's about 15 minutes of research.

I guess Max being so consistently wrong now feels himself also an expert on error. From appearances it is serving him about as effectively as his alleged foreign policy expertise.

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