Monday, January 17, 2005


Ohhhh Yeaaaah!

Malkin accuses the left of being "Kool-Aid drinkers" as she quotes the Pentagon's response to the Hersh article.The main point the Pentagon has to make other than flat-out denial (because we know how much flat-out denial is worth from the Pentagon) is some sort of internal inconsistency:
Mr. Hersh cannot even keep track of his own wanderings. At one point in his article, he makes the outlandish assertion that the military operations he describes are so secret that the operations are being kept secret even from U.S. military Combatant Commanders. Mr. Hersh later states, though, that the locus of this super-secret activity is at the U.S. Central Command headquarters, evidently without the knowledge of the commander if Mr. Hersh is to be believed.
Shall we take a look at the actual article? First, the assertion that the operations are being kept secret from CinCs:
“The Pentagon doesn’t feel obligated to report any of this to Congress,” the former high-level intelligence official said. “They don’t even call it ‘covert ops’—it’s too close to the C.I.A. phrase. In their view, it’s ‘black reconnaissance.’ They’re not even going to tell the cincs”—the regional American military commanders-in-chief.
Any of "this" refers to "series of findings and executive orders authorizing secret commando groups and other Special Forces units to conduct covert operations against suspected terrorist targets in as many as ten nations in the Middle East and South Asia." And now, the "Central Command Headquarters" comment:
The Pentagon’s contingency plans for a broader invasion of Iran are also being updated. Strategists at the headquarters of the U.S. Central Command, in Tampa, Florida, have been asked to revise the military’s war plan, providing for a maximum ground and air invasion of Iran.
So Hersh is, in fact, talking about two different things: secret operations inside Iran and other countries, and a standard war plan for Iran - a type of plan which, by the way, the US has had for many years, and for many different countries.

So, the Pentagon's rebuttal of Hersh's claims consist of a few unsubstantiated denials, and a snarky look at an internal inconsistency - which isn't an inconsistency at all. Now who's drinking the Kool-Aid, Michelle?

Update: For more on why never to believe a Pentagon denial, visit Norbizness.