I was going to give this post some sophisticated, hidden reference title, but in the interest of calling a spade a general-purpose personal excavation tool…
Josh Marshall collects a couple of quotes to make the following points:
- Bush says that there will not be a draft
- Bush says we can fight another war at any point, if needed, with existing resources
- We have a Selective Service to prepare for a draft
You may be able to see an inherent contradiction between the first two points and the last one. But look closer and you’ll see that the second point is, shall we say, outside the ‘reality based community‘.
The UK government has just approved the transfer of around 850 members of the Black Watch to replace existing US units, freeing up the Americans for other combat operations. The move is necessary because suitable forces don’t exist on the US side.
Remember, Bush says we could man another theater if needed, without the draft. Figure something the size of Iraq, 130,000 US troops. Yet we can’t find 850 combat and support troops to cover for a redeployed unit? In my book that makes Bush a liar. The only question is if he’s lying about
a) the need for British troops, or
b) the capability to wage a second war without the draft.
I’ll let you decide, but here’s a hint: the answer is b.
Incidentally, the Guardian article ends with this familiar-sounding quote:
“The prime minister said yesterday that the Black Watch would be home for Christmas. “