A review of the lengthy report — a draft of which was obtained by The New York Times — shows that it identified problems with nearly every organization that had a role in planning the war. That assessment parallels the verdicts of numerous former officials and independent analysts.
The study chided President Bush — and by implication Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, who served as national security adviser when the war was planned — as having failed to resolve differences among rival agencies. “Throughout the planning process, tensions between the Defense Department and the State Department were never mediated by the president or his staff,” it said.
The Defense Department led by Donald H. Rumsfeld was given the lead in overseeing the postwar period in Iraq despite its “lack of capacity for civilian reconstruction planning and execution.”
The State Department led by Colin L. Powell produced a voluminous study on the future of Iraq that identified important issues but was of “uneven quality” and “did not constitute an actionable plan.”
Gen. Tommy R. Franks, whose Central Command oversaw the military operation in Iraq, had a “fundamental misunderstanding” of what the military needed to do to secure postwar Iraq, the study said.
Not an earth shattering revelation rather another confirmation of the administration’s determination to invade Iraq and sell a rosy scenario od events to Congress and the American people, A Prewar Slide Show Cast Iraq in Rosy Hues
When Gen. Tommy R. Franks and his top officers gathered in August 2002 to review an invasion plan for Iraq, it reflected a decidedly upbeat vision of what the country would look like four years after Saddam Hussein was ousted from power.
A broadly representative Iraqi government would be in place. The Iraqi Army would be working to keep the peace. And the United States would have as few as 5,000 troops in the country.
Military slides obtained by the National Security Archive under the Freedom of Information Act outline the command’s PowerPoint projection of the stable, pro-American and democratic Iraq that was to be.
More from Hullabaloo, This Just In: Bush Administration Screwed Up Iraq War Planning and The Reality Based Community, SNAFU
I kinda wish that tristero had not used the term screwed up. Whether they meant to or not it implies that the administration had a good plan and things just went sour. That was not the case. This newest RAND report shows that the Bushies were determined to go ahead regardless of any caveats the intelligence community or the military had. We know from several retired generals that the administration operated in a bubble of yes men and yes women acting more like drunken cheer leaders on a mission then experts on a protracted Middle-East war and subsequent occupation. We’re talking about The Decider, the guy that takes action and doesn’t care too much about thinking things through. The last five disastrous years have been the result of planning that was so heavily laced with arrogance and belief in their misbegotten cause no plan that was in any way in opposition to those beliefs would have been followed; that is portion of incompetence inherent to neocon thinking combined with a large portion of the blindness of extremist ideology.
In a New York Times op-ed column, retired Major Gen. Paul Eaton, who helped revive the Iraqi army, described Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld as “incompetent strategically, operationally and tactically” and called for his resignation. Retired Lt. Gen. William Odom, former director of the National Security Agency and now a Yale professor, said in a speech covered by the Providence Journal that America’s invasion of Iraq might be the worst strategic mistake in American history.
Publicizing his book, “The Battle for Peace,” in a recent “Meet the Press” appearance, retired Marine Gen. Anthony Zinni, a four-star former commander of the Central Command, describes administration behavior that ranged from “true dereliction, negligence and irresponsibility” to “lying, incompetence and corruption.” Another Marine, retired Lt. Gen. Greg Newbold, has written in Time magazine that the Iraq war was unnecessary. Finally, Lt. Gen. Bernard Trainor and Michael Gordon have written a history of the invasion of Iraq, Cobra II, which describes a willfully self-deluding planning process.