Blame Powell


Donald Rumsfeld explained today what has always seemed to us to be one of the decisive factors in some of the problems faced in the occupation of Iraq: Turkey's refusal to allow US forces to pass through and attack Iraq from the north, allowing a pincer movement on the capital.

The level of insurgency in postwar Iraq wouldn't be so high if the U.S.—led coalition had been able to invade from the north, through Turkey, Defense Secretary Donald H. Rumsfeld said Sunday.

Rumsfeld told "Fox News Sunday" that if the United States had able to get its 4th Infantry Division into northern Iraq through Turkey, more of Saddam's Baathist regime would have been captured or killed, diminishing the insurgency.

U.S. forces had to enter Iraq from the south, so by the time Baghdad was taken, much of Saddam's military and intelligence services had dissipated into the northern cities, Rumsfeld said. "They're still, in a number of instances, still active," he said.

There are a couple of other factors the SecDef was too diplomatic to mention. One is that the WMDs were spirited out of Iraq, probably into Syria and ultimately the Bekaa Valley, as US forces moved north. The Other is that Secretary of State Colin Powell was responsible. We lost the vote in Turkey's parliament by 3 votes. Powell blew it. You should never lose close, when you can make the bribes. Turks go cheap.

Richard Baehr and Thomas Lifson  3 20 05