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Old 01-09-2005, 09:50 AM  
MadProphetMargin MadProphetMargin is offline
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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/6802629/site/newsweek/

‘The Salvador Option’
The Pentagon may put Special-Forces-led assassination or kidnapping teams in Iraq

By Michael Hirsh and John Barry
Newsweek
Updated: 10:22 a.m. ET Jan. 9, 2005


Jan. 8 - What to do about the deepening quagmire of Iraq? The Pentagon’s latest approach is being called "the Salvador option"—and the fact that it is being discussed at all is a measure of just how worried Donald Rumsfeld really is. "What everyone agrees is that we can’t just go on as we are," one senior military officer told NEWSWEEK. "We have to find a way to take the offensive against the insurgents. Right now, we are playing defense. And we are losing." Last November’s operation in Fallujah, most analysts agree, succeeded less in breaking "the back" of the insurgency—as Marine Gen. John Sattler optimistically declared at the time—than in spreading it out.

Now, NEWSWEEK has learned, the Pentagon is intensively debating an option that dates back to a still-secret strategy in the Reagan administration’s battle against the leftist guerrilla insurgency in El Salvador in the early 1980s. Then, faced with a losing war against Salvadoran rebels, the U.S. government funded or supported "nationalist" forces that allegedly included so-called death squads directed to hunt down and kill rebel leaders and sympathizers. Eventually the insurgency was quelled, and many U.S. conservatives consider the policy to have been a success—despite the deaths of innocent civilians and the subsequent Iran-Contra arms-for-hostages scandal. (Among the current administration officials who dealt with Central America back then is John Negroponte, who is today the U.S. ambassador to Iraq. Under Reagan, he was ambassador to Honduras.)

Following that model, one Pentagon proposal would send Special Forces teams to advise, support and possibly train Iraqi squads, most likely hand-picked Kurdish Peshmerga fighters and Shiite militiamen, to target Sunni insurgents and their sympathizers, even across the border into Syria, according to military insiders familiar with the discussions. It remains unclear, however, whether this would be a policy of assassination or so-called "snatch" operations, in which the targets are sent to secret facilities for interrogation. The current thinking is that while U.S. Special Forces would lead operations in, say, Syria, activities inside Iraq itself would be carried out by Iraqi paramilitaries, officials tell NEWSWEEK.

Also being debated is which agency within the U.S. government—the Defense department or CIA—would take responsibility for such an operation. Rumsfeld’s Pentagon has aggressively sought to build up its own intelligence-gathering and clandestine capability with an operation run by Defense Undersecretary Stephen Cambone. But since the Abu Ghraib interrogations scandal, some military officials are ultra-wary of any operations that could run afoul of the ethics codified in the Uniform Code of Military Justice. That, they argue, is the reason why such covert operations have always been run by the CIA and authorized by a special presidential finding. (In "covert" activity, U.S. personnel operate under cover and the U.S. government will not confirm that it instigated or ordered them into action if they are captured or killed.)

Meanwhile, intensive discussions are taking place inside the Senate Intelligence Committee over the Defense department’s efforts to expand the involvement of U.S. Special Forces personnel in intelligence-gathering missions. Historically, Special Forces’ intelligence gathering has been limited to objectives directly related to upcoming military operations—"preparation of the battlefield," in military lingo. But, according to intelligence and defense officials, some Pentagon civilians for years have sought to expand the use of Special Forces for other intelligence missions.

Pentagon civilians and some Special Forces personnel believe CIA civilian managers have traditionally been too conservative in planning and executing the kind of undercover missions that Special Forces soldiers believe they can effectively conduct. CIA traditionalists are believed to be adamantly opposed to ceding any authority to the Pentagon. Until now, Pentagon proposals for a capability to send soldiers out on intelligence missions without direct CIA approval or participation have been shot down. But counter-terrorist strike squads, even operating covertly, could be deemed to fall within the Defense department’s orbit.

The interim government of Prime Minister Ayad Allawi is said to be among the most forthright proponents of the Salvador option. Maj. Gen.Muhammad Abdallah al-Shahwani, director of Iraq’s National Intelligence Service, may have been laying the groundwork for the idea with a series of interviews during the past ten days. Shahwani told the London-based Arabic daily Al-Sharq al-Awsat that the insurgent leadership—he named three former senior figures in the Saddam regime, including Saddam Hussein’s half-brother—were essentially safe across the border in a Syrian sanctuary. "We are certain that they are in Syria and move easily between Syrian and Iraqi territories," he said, adding that efforts to extradite them "have not borne fruit so far."

Shahwani also said that the U.S. occupation has failed to crack the problem of broad support for the insurgency. The insurgents, he said, "are mostly in the Sunni areas where the population there, almost 200,000, is sympathetic to them." He said most Iraqi people do not actively support the insurgents or provide them with material or logistical help, but at the same time they won’t turn them in. One military source involved in the Pentagon debate agrees that this is the crux of the problem, and he suggests that new offensive operations are needed that would create a fear of aiding the insurgency. "The Sunni population is paying no price for the support it is giving to the terrorists," he said. "From their point of view, it is cost-free. We have to change that equation."

Pentagon sources emphasize there has been no decision yet to launch the Salvador option. Last week, Rumsfeld decided to send a retired four-star general, Gary Luck, to Iraq on an open-ended mission to review the entire military strategy there. But with the U.S. Army strained to the breaking point, military strategists note that a dramatic new approach might be needed—perhaps one as potentially explosive as the Salvador option.


With Mark Hosenball


© 2005 Newsweek, Inc.


Actually, this COULD work, but my prediction is that this will turn into a general slaughter of Sunnis by the Shi'ites, with American assistance.
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Old 03-21-2013, 04:47 PM   #121
Comrade Crapski Comrade Crapski is offline
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You're suggesting that where there is smoke there is no fire. Again, what facts would Kenneth Starr have had if the repubs handn't entrapped Clinton with Linda Tripp, which ultimately had nothing to do with the purpose of the independent council to begin with?

You demand facts when the lack of accountability of this admininistration has prevented the facts from coming forward (Abu Graibh, Valerie Plame). If Kenneth Starr were still working today, I'm sure we'd have quite enough facts. While proving that they lied is difficult without a smoking gun, the objective facts of several of these situations has called their veracity into question time and time again. It isn't just partisan politics that call into question their behavior and their honesty.

A consistent pattern of manipulation and arrogant disregard has gone unaccounted for, IMO.

I'm not trying to bash Bush. I am just hoping that people will begin looking harder at (and be more wary of) this administration's words and actions which seem to always be driven by an ideological zeal that results in a type of unAmerican behavior that ultimately undermines our traditions, values, and fundamental sense of fairness. All this is done by appealing to our pride, prejudices, and fears (IMO),
Wow that's a doozy right there.



I can why you haven't reared your tapeworm head from Dear Leader's ass in four years.
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Old 03-21-2013, 05:45 PM   #122
Comrade Crapski Comrade Crapski is offline
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I guess penchief hasn't seen this yet.

BUMP

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Old 03-21-2013, 06:16 PM   #123
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Holy shit, Sir Bumps-A-Lot this thread is 8 years old. Are you clinically insane?
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Old 03-21-2013, 06:32 PM   #124
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Holy shit, Sir Bumps-A-Lot this thread is 8 years old. Are you clinically insane?
We were nazis.

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Old 03-21-2013, 06:35 PM   #125
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We were nazis.

But now we're all better because Obama is in charge.
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Old 03-21-2013, 06:36 PM   #126
Comrade Crapski Comrade Crapski is offline
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But now we're all better because Obama is in charge.
Not only is Frankie smart, he's funNy!!! And good looking!

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Old 03-21-2013, 09:56 PM   #127
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We are Nazis
FYP. Well, at least you admit it...it's the first step toward fixing the problem. Right? Heh.



Quote:
Originally Posted by LoneWolf View Post
Holy shit, Sir Bumps-A-Lot this thread is 8 years old. Are you clinically insane?
It's his OWN thread....duh....
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:05 PM   #128
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FYP. Well, at least you admit it...it's the first step toward fixing the problem. Right? Heh.





It's his OWN thread....duh....

. No. It's not crap's thread.
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:06 PM   #129
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. No. It's not crap's thread.
Wanna bet???
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Old 03-21-2013, 10:27 PM   #130
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Wow that's a doozy right there.



I can why you haven't reared your tapeworm head from Dear Leader's ass in four years.
8+ years later.
Just how slowly are your synapses firing?
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Old 03-21-2013, 11:17 PM   #131
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Wanna bet???
It's not his. MadProphetMargin was a guy who came here from the Democratic Underground when Noswad went there begging for liberal help. He turned out to be a pretty interesting liberal during the short time he was here. Far more interesting that she was, IMO. He had one of the cooler usernames too.
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Old 03-21-2013, 11:19 PM   #132
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8+ years later.
Just how slowly are your synapses firing?
penchief showed up today after a long absence and got into it with SHTSPRAYER (comrade crapski) in the Invasion of Iraq 10 years later thread. So SHTSPRAYER decided to go back into the archives and do some research on penchief's posting history.
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