August 25, 2005

The View from the Pentagon

Larry di Rita, sorry I mean Wretchard, explains what's going-on with IED's in Iraq.

Posted by Gregory at August 25, 2005 02:47 AM | TrackBack (2)
Comments

Odd, I thought Wretchard was actually Richard Fernandez. Well, you learn something new daily.

Also see here (infrared IEDs), especially here (the IED marketplace), and here, other excellent links.

Posted by: Brad at August 25, 2005 05:21 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Greg is right about Wretchard. He often has quite good information but he seems to feel the need to shill for the Bush admin. Accordingly any setbacks in Iraq are really blessings in disguise.

Posted by: Tom at August 25, 2005 06:47 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Belmont Club is propoganda not information. The single defining characteristic of the site is exactly that failure is actually success in disguise.

Posted by: Jeremy at August 25, 2005 02:00 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

This is a katty post and intellectually demeaning of you, Greg. Wretchard reads, contemplates and writes from how he views events. The fact that his perspective differs from yours hardly makes his wrong or indefensible or intellectually inferior. Why link to him if you think it's worthless or just Pentagon propoganda? Had you nothing intelligent to say yourself?

Very poor form, Greg. A State Department/diplomat sychophant should know better.

Posted by: Charles at August 25, 2005 02:16 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Is it any wonder why the tone of discourse on this blog has dropped precipitously in the past few months? The tone in comments takes its cue from the tone of the posts; it starts at the top.

I suppose, judging by this post, that if Greg is fine with accusing others of shilling for the Pentagon, he's going to have no problem with others accusing him of shilling for the insurgency?

What's happened to Greg? I've read this blog since, well, forever. But the last few months it's been a totally different person blogging.

Posted by: Al at August 25, 2005 03:25 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

You mean he isn't prepared to feed you what you want to hear about the great success Iraq is when it is clearly a complete failure? This blog has been slow but it is moving from the faith-based community to the reality based community.

Posted by: Jeremy at August 25, 2005 03:46 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

I was going to say -- but I was going to put it this way: we all, presumably, reserve the right to change our minds on things as we consider the evidence to hand. I believe Greg rather has that right as well. (Though this applies more perhaps to the comments on other recent posts than here, maybe.)

Posted by: Ned Raggett at August 25, 2005 03:53 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Greg can obviously take whatever position on the issues he wants on his own blog. My comment is simply that this post is not a comment on the issues - it is solely playground-level name calling. It's the same thing with his "Conscience Caucus" - as if those of us who disagree with him have no conscience. The opinions are thoughtful; the tone is offensive.

Posted by: Al at August 25, 2005 04:28 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Ned, the readership of BD is fair, even at its most mocking. On the other hand, Wretchard is a provocative writer and an excellent blogger who deserves much more than sneers from a peer, who used to be provocative. As Gregory's fascination with defeat has grown, so has his prose died ignobly, and the two are not unconnected; vigorous tragedy has still an empathsis on doing while gothic fatalism is desperate in its sloth. So freedom of speech has at its core the honesty of apprehension, two sides can debate the honest details, but when one side falls upon the tremors of emotion as support, striking randomly for soundbites to confirm his statements contrary to precedent and sober analysis, the other side is, if not obligated to, fully within its license to restore good faith. When Gregory gets back to his old self, he'll be more grateful to the kicks in his gut while he's down than the crowd that 'shares his pain' by grimacing and doing nothing.

Posted by: Brad at August 25, 2005 05:54 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

This post would be more credible if Greg stay within his area of knowledge. Greg is excellent within Foreign Policy. Military Science is simply not Greg expertise - that requires knowing which end of the rifle to point at.

Wretchard is not always correct, but on this one he is. A percentile of IEDs that hit their intended targets is getting smaller, however the ones that hit are more lethal.

I have seen the evolution of IEDs during the time I was in Iraq. The devices are progressively improved and each succession one is more sophisticated than the previous. However, US soldiers on the ground are adapting faster. So most IEDs are discovered before they detonated.

Posted by: Minh-Duc at August 25, 2005 07:45 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

If I may be so arrogant as to sum up the commenters who make sense:

Wretchard is an invaluable, if flawed, source of tactical information. Greg is an invaluable, if flawed, source of policy reflection.

Lately, however, Greg has compromised his value by lowering the level of his rhetoric.

Posted by: byrd at August 25, 2005 08:07 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Do any of you making the negative comments, include Greg for the snide intro, actually READ the Belmont Club? Either you don't, in which case your comments are invalid, or you do, in which case your comments are dishonest.

Posted by: exhelodrvr at August 25, 2005 08:35 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Guys, you're both right!

Its a floor wax, and a dessert topping!

Seriously, I'm not sure that there are two better sources for objective, detailed information on the war in Iraq and other related subjects than BD and Wretchard. If one can extract the personal feelings of both writers from their posts (which seem to be more prevalent here lately, but so what?) there is more valuable info there and in the comments sections than almost any other easily accessible source.

(However, if Greg has some specific issues with BC's analysis, it sure would be helpful to hear him go into some detail. One-off comments do not become him.)

Posted by: paul at August 25, 2005 09:13 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

exhelodrvr,
Thanks for making my point.

Greg,
Do you realize that this is the level of discourse and intellectual discussion you are inviting w/ such an immature post. Excuse me for expecting better from you.

Posted by: Charles at August 25, 2005 10:30 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Charles,
The point I was making was that anyone who actually reads the commentary at Belmont Club could not honestly make those statements (See Jeremy and Tom's posts), because there is plenty of criticism of the Bush Administration that occurs there.

Posted by: exhelodrvr at August 25, 2005 10:59 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

guys it's a big world out there...and there are lots and lots of blogs..

if you're so unhappy here, point your browser elsewhere, by all means...

i won't take it too personal, promise!

seriously, i appreciate my readers and am happy they come around. but if i am letting them down or they are angry here or something, it's prob better for both of us if you go elsewhere.

ok?

Posted by: greg at August 26, 2005 12:32 AM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

"guys it's a big world out there...and there are lots and lots of blogs.."

99.99% of which are garbage. Most are either Rightwing "heres a headline from Iraq - this shows how teh eevil left MSM is trying to subvert Dubya, in order to destroy christianity, and kill unborn babies" Or leftwing "heres a headline from Iraq shows how teh eevil Dubya, has used an imperialist war to stay in power, and establish theocracy in America"

There are actually very few blogs that intelligently discuss WOT strategy and tactics on a regular basis.

Posted by: liberalhawk at August 26, 2005 04:19 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink

Greg,
I agree w/ liberalhawk - most blogs are garbage because the intellectual arguments aren't there, it's just name-calling. Hence, my reaction to this post - especially because you've written so well and elequently on important issues with insightful reasoning - I find it beneath you.

Your reaction above to the criticism cannot be argued with - it's your blog and I don't have to visit. Forgive me for being disappointed, but given that I get enough mindless namecalling from other blogs, I shall heed your advice. Best of luck to you.

Posted by: Charles at August 26, 2005 07:05 PM | Permalink to this comment Permalink
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