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Perles of Wisdom? — Why Now?
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Perles of Wisdom?

Eric Alterman has fun with Richard Perle.

Richard Perle said:

“But it’s a house of cards. He rules by fear because he knows there is no underlying support. Support for Saddam, including within his military organization, will collapse at the first whiff of gunpowder. “

In Jingo, Terry Pratchett writes:

“Won’t last long. Lot of cowards, the Klatchians,” said Colon. “The moment they taste a bit of cold steel they’re legging it away over the sand.”

Sergeant Frederick Colon of the Ankh-Morpork City Watch is rather Falstaffian. No one should assume that Klatchians are Arabs, or that this novel, copyrighted in 1997, has anything to do with the Iraq War. That would be wrong. This is a fantasy novel. It is terrible of me to be comparing a neocon advisor to the Shrubbery to a character in a fantasy novel, and Donald Rumsfeld is not Lord Rust, really.

From The Book on Bush:

In 1996 Richard Perle and Douglas Feith authored a strategic study at the behest of Benjamin Netanyahu, the hard-line Likud ex-prime minister of Israel, in which they argued for an effort to “focus on removing Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq — an important Israeli strategic objective in its own right — as a means of foiling Syria” and remaking Syria. The report, entitled “A Clean Break,” suggested that a new Iraqi regime, together with renewed pressure on Syria, could inspire Lebanese Shiite Muslims to reconnect with Iraqi Shiite religious leaders “to wean the south Lebanese [Shiites] away from Hezbollah, Iran and Syria.”

This shows such an appalling ignorance of the relationships among the Shi’ia community as to be astounding. How could anyone believe that all Shi’ia wouldn’t form a mutual alliance that would include Hezbollah and the Iranians? Do they know that the Ba’athist Party in Syria is controlled by members of a Shi’ia sect?

This is one of the people that convinced the government of the United States that the Iraq War would be a good idea and succeed. Why is he allowed to speak as an authority on anything except losing and ignorance?


1 Steve Bates { 11.08.06 at 1:11 am }

I really must catch up to the present day in my Pratchett reading.

Perle is amazing. He pontificates… no, not even the Pope is that grandiose… on anything, whether he knows anything about it or not, and then assumes it must be so because he said it. He’s the perfect minion of King George.

2 Bryan { 11.08.06 at 1:26 am }

It’s amazing. The man is never right, but people still listen to him. Where is the accountability? Why does he still get to spread his brand of ignorance and get paid for his opinion.

I re-read Jingo prior to the invasion of Iraq, and it was too close for comfort. I saw “Fred Colon” in a suit all over the news.