Lots of people actually thought about and worried about bin Laden before 9/11.
Lots of people actually did think about and talk about terrorists using airplanes as missiles before 9/11.
Lots of people actually told BushCo. that there were no WMD in Iraq.
Lots of people actually warned the administration that an invasion of Iraq was a really bad idea:
Retired Marine Gen. Anthony Zinni wondered aloud yesterday how Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld could be caught off guard by the chaos in Iraq that has killed nearly 100 Americans in recent weeks and led to his announcement that 20,000 U.S. troops would be staying there instead of returning home as planned.Now, Marine Generals are not usually what you'd call liberal America haters - or whatever epithets the right-wingnuts are throwing around these days. And Zinni, especially had the C.V. to be authoritative in his assessments. That should have inoculated him against the usual mud slinging BushCo. breaks out for its detractors, right?
"I'm surprised that he is surprised because there was a lot of us who were telling him that it was going to be thus," said Zinni, a Marine for 39 years and the former commander of the U.S. Central Command. "Anyone could know the problems they were going to see. How could they not?"
At a Pentagon news briefing yesterday, Rumsfeld said he could not have estimated how many troops would be killed in the past week.
Known as the "Warrior Diplomat," Zinni is not a peace activist by nature or training, having led troops in Vietnam, commanded rescue operations in Somalia and directed strikes against Iraq and al Qaeda.Zinni's assessment of how the Iraqi situation is developing? It's pretty chilling:
He once commanded the 1st Marine Expeditionary Force at Camp Pendleton.
Out of uniform, Zinni was a troubleshooter for the U.S. government in Africa, Asia and Europe and served as special envoy to the Middle East under the Bush administration for a time before his reservations over the Iraq war and its aftermath caused him to resign and oppose it.
Not even Zinni's resume could shield him from the accusations that followed.
"I've been called a traitor and a turncoat for mentioning these things," said Zinni, 60. The problems in Iraq are being caused, he said, by poor planning and shortsightedness, such as disbanding the Iraqi army and being unable to provide security.
"I spent two years in Vietnam, and I've seen this movie before," he said.