Friday, January 13, 2006

Giving Charlie Props

Despite all the conniptions Charlie Rose gives me, alas, o elitist viewer, where else on TV can we turn for interviews with artists, architects, airline execs, and former presidential envoys?
Bremer: Saddam's army was an army of about 500,000 soldiers, of which 300,000 were draftees--Shia draftees who served under an almost entirely Sunni officer core. And they [Shia] were brutalized, hazed, tortured.... When these 300,000 Shia enlisted men saw the way the war was going, they went home. They disserted. When liberation happened, there was not a single unit of the army standing in place anywhere. There was no army to "disband." I regret that we ever used the word "disband," because it leaves the impression there was something *to* disband. So there was never a question of disbanding the army.

So the question was raised, Should we recall the army? Now, as a practical matter, this meant sending our American young men and women in the armed forces to hunt for these Shia and forcing them at gunpoint back into an army they hated....

So what did we do about the army? We paid all of the Shia conscripts a termination fee and said, "Thank you for your service"--300,000 of them.

What did we do about the officers? We paid all of them, except the very top ones, a stipend, a monthly payment which continued all the way through the occupation. So, the people who say, "Well, you fired them and they didn't have a job and they didn't have any money..." that's nonsense. We paid them. We paid them an amount that was calculated to be slightly more than they would have gotten if they'd had a pension.


CR: Do you believe he [Ahmad Chalabi] took secrets to Iran?

PB: Well, it's possible.

CR: You think it is?

PB: It's possible. I mean, I saw--

CR: Do you believe it? I mean, you were there, at the center of it. *You* know.

PB:'s something I don't think I really want to get public.

CR: But if you're saying it's possible and don't really wanna get into it, the logical conclusion is that you believe he did.

PB: Well, you can draw your own conclusions.
You'll soon be able to download the entire program here.


Anonymous Ann Hastings said...

I only caught parts of this. Thanks for posting. I was getting bad notions from what people were saying about his book. There's lots more to the story that MSM reports. As usual. On purpose.

Love your site. Keep up the postings.

10:03 AM  

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