Thursday, February 22, 2007

GW Bush in the Ring of Fire

Ring of fire usually invokes Johnny Cash, volcanos and earthquakes. But in this case it involves GW Bush's incredibly inept six-year journey from a relatively stable international situation, to an environment where he is surrounded by those who are increasingly hostile to America. Bush has centered himself with fires on each point of the compass. To the South he has the raging Leftist Latinos in Central and South America and his permissive massive invasion by Mexican illegal aliens. To the East, the exploding Middle Eastern situation where he has placed his men in mortal combat. In the North, the big Russian Bear is back on the prowl and now has stood up to lunge at America. From his Western shores he faces a nuclear North Korea and a Red China that is increasingly becoming more powerful economicaly and militarily. This threat in magnitude and diversity did not exist before the advent of GW Bush and his band of bunglers. It is obvious they do not know what they are doing.

Bush built a bonfire in Iraq with his elective war. To his dismay, the conflagration spread to a sweeping prairie fire and then to a raging forest fire while he and his generals bit their fingernails and pretended it was a controlled burn. By now a majority of Americans has figured out what the rest of the world knew all along: the US ostensibly went to war in Iraq to knock off Saddam Inc. and to plant the flag of a weird form of Christian democracy among the Muslim Arabs and Shiites. These goals have been accomplished long ago, as best the US was able... But according to General Dempsey, who is in charge of training Iraqi security forces, the US must now stay to insure that the democracy survives through another four-year election cycle in Iraq.

GW Bush has not scrapped his plans to create a massive US enclave in the Middle East. He still intends to build the largest US embassy in the world in Baghdad with plans to station US troops permanently in Iraq. The US military installations, built with funds earmarked for reconstruction, are not sand bagged fire bases a la Vietnam, but permanent concrete protected forts and airfields with amenities. Bush's failure to provide security for the Iraqis has resulted in massive refugee problems that caused major problems for Iraq's neighbors – it so bad that Bush now wants to send Iraqi refugees to the US; first increment is about 7,000 people. As if the US does not have enough internal security problems, he intends to augment the Islamic population in the US... He might want to ask his bosom buddy Tony Blair about that since Tony has a ragged terror experience with this minority in the UK. If they come in, they all should go to Crawford, Texas or Kennebunkport, Maine where Family Bush has spreads. Despite US bases all over the Middle East and an over aggressive Israeli ally, Bush still wants an Iraqi fiefdom, but for that to happen he must bleed more, spend more, and engage Iran. That is another war.

East North East on Bush's ring of fire is Afghanistan: an ever expanding bonfire that is blowing sparks throughout the nation and igniting the countryside. Bush's fire brigade is composed of NATO forces, many of whom prefer not to engage in combat. Bush has recently sent a brigade of reinforcements while his allies fret and drag their feet. If the Russians and British could not subdue the country, fat chance a stressed NATO will; as long as bin Laden and Taliban Mullah Omar are on the loose, forget about stability or victory in that part of the world.

The Norte Americanos or the gringos have never been beloved by the Latinos, so it is no surprise that anti-American regimes pop up from time to time; they usually rise and fall on economic realities. Most of these countries have had some degree of turmoil or anarchy since Spain and later Simon Bolivar left town. There is an altered situation that has developed under GW Bush that presents another set of circumstances that do not bode well for American interests south of the border. Prior to Bush, the situation was held together by the threat of a foggy Monroe doctrine or carrots and sticks. In the end, US Marine Corps and the 82nd Airborne Division kept the political pot from tipping over – the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Grenada and Panama being the latest military interventions by US.

The quantum difference under Bush is that an economically powerful left wing Chavez in Venezuela was permitted to develop; Red China, Russia and even Iran are now playing big time in that arena. Russia has sold massive amounts of small arms and military aircraft to Chavez. Red China controls the Panama Canal and economically backstops leftist governments in Bolivia and Ecuador. Even Sandinista Noriega is back in power in Nicaragua. Iran has some kind of covert oil deal with Venezuela in the event the US Iran war balloon goes up. CITGO oil, owned by Venezuela, offers a 40% discount on heating oil to the US in 16 states – if you need this oil, call Joe Kennedy and he will make the arrangements – as advertised on MEET THE PRESS last Sunday. Don't you just love those Kennedys? Under any circumstances, Venezuelan oil will be used to light fires in Latino lands and even the USA. The unprotected US border is changing the whole concept of America as both opportunist Democrats and Republicans refuse to stop a naked breach in the border we share with Mexico.

Red China has penetrated the US market big time causing an enormous balance of payments in its favor. All this is with GW Bush's blessing. It is called globalization. Apart from its aggressive role in Latin America, Red China is remorselessly building its military power, demonstrated a few weeks ago by a shoot down of a space satellite. Its ground, air and navy forces, now with missile capabilities, are modernized and expanding. From time to time it is assisted by Russia who supplies military equipment and conducts combined military operations. In the first days of his administration, Bush made a terrible mistake when he condoned Red China's illegal shoot down of an American recon aircraft over international waters. Bush has never recovered from that blunder, as the Chinese have continued to press him against the wall on trade and military involvement. The Clinton administration passed missile technology to them, but did bomb their embassy in Belgrade during the Balkan war; too bad Clinton apologized. Bush finally made a stop gap deal with the North Koreans on nuclear weapons with provisions close to what Clinton signed, but later later backfired. The Bush administration claims it is a better deal because it is multilateral. Bush's former UN Rep. John Bolton disagrees publicly with this statement. His hair and mustache are on fire over the issue – just one more fire for Bush. What the hell!

Perhaps the most regrettable diplomatic debacle for Bush is with Russia. Even ex-President HW Bush, despite his misguided invasion of Kuwait and his wobbly stand on tax raises, knew enough to keep the ties with Russia from breaking. Clinton quarreled with Russia over Kosovo, but managed to keep the china on the table from breaking while GW Bush behaved like bull in a china shop. Steamed up by his lunatic neocons who, by the sword, wanted to plant their form of crazy democracy in the Kremlin, Bush moved hard to destabilize the Ukraine and Belarus; he set up bases in Central Asia and moved NATO to the edges of Russia in Central and Eastern Europe, and the Balkans. As Putin moved against the European owned oligarchy that controlled the Russian press, media, and mineral rich resources, Bush took the side of the oligarchs in the name of capitalism and democracy. Bush certainly did interfere in internal Russian affairs and in the end expedited Putin’s compression of power by get-your-hands-off Russian nationalism. Last week Putin, who has a 75% approval rating, charted a new Russian course at an international conference for Defense Ministers in Munich. He declared that the US behaves irresponsibly and makes the world unsafe. This was not just bluster. Previously, Putin, who is now oil rich, announced a 190 billion defense build up. His Minister of Defense indicated Russia would abrogate the Intermediate Missile Defense Treaty as it is no longer in its best interests. Take that NATO! This move threatens all of Europe once again with possible and accurate Russian missile strikes. Russia has warned the Czech Republic and Poland that US missile defense bases in their countries will be targeted by Russian missiles. SECDEF Gates did his best at the time to put lip stick on the pig by saying the US is not looking for a second cold war, but he may already have it, unfortunately. Bush’s pigeons came home to roost.

Bush has to act as fireman and contain the inferno he has foolishly ignited. You will note that I have depicted the Catholic Saint Florian at the head of this article. He is the Catholic patron saint of firefighters. The deities of Bush's born-again evangelistic Christians obviously have not aided him in his time of need. Mr. Bush, try St. Florian. Remember, stand him on his head before you begin your incantations; he is more powerful that way. Nothing else has worked for you so far. Colonel Robert E Bartos USA RET

Thursday, February 15, 2007

None Dare Call It Treason

With over 70% of Americans fed up and angry with the deadly Bush Iraq war, the congress of the US fails to end the war by curtailing funding. The poor things do not even want to discuss that funding issue. Ask yourself why? If you stop funding, you hurt the troops! This is a big juicy red herring waved by those who want the war to proceed for other reasons. Same goes for the surge reinforcement of over 21,000 troops – if you fail, it hurts troop morale – just more baloney by permanent war advocates who want the war to go on and on. Even General Pace, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, stepped back from this jingoism. Worst thing for troop morale is extended duty once promised a hard departure date from a dangerous combat theater. The surge does just that... When you stop the war, it keeps troops alive. Had congress failed to act on the Vietnam war, diehard Nixonites still would be still hanging in there pursuing the light at the end of tunnel over troop corpses, using the same tired mawkish slogans used today. Remember the old threat of falling dominoes that never fell? One thing is for certain: the longer the US remains in Iraq, the stronger the Jihadists become...

Nearly all the congressmen legally take money privately and publicly as campaign contributions – these donations form the life blood of their candidacies. It has now reached such astounding proportions that the success in polls and projections to win office are based on the size of the campaign war chests. No politician will go against his self interest to fix this de facto bribe scheme by breaking the link. They speciously hide behind the First Amendment right of free speech. Further, no self interest group will stop the donation bribes, because that is the most effective way to control congressmen and presidents. Take that American voter! The irony is that the less money the candidate has, the better the chance he will act in the voters' interest rather than those of special interests who now own his loyalty big time.

So under these circumstances, let us speculate on who or what keeps congress from ending the war. There are an estimated 75,000 private contractors working in Iraq. The war makes profits for those who supply equipment, ammunition, food, clothing, security, communications and transportation. For example, although our troops are fighting in the land of fresh water from the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers, they enjoy the luxury of bottled water – sometimes even ice is trucked into the hazard filled battle zone from Kuwait. So, right there is just one very small example of a deep supply constituency for sustaining the war permanently. Representative Waxman, bless his soul, is now pursuing the spoor of waste and abuse in Iraq to the tune of 12 billion in untraceable greenbacks. You cannot depend on mercantile morality to end the war. Although short sighted, those greedy interests just want to make money. As a result, they keep the situation that way with hefty contributions to congressmen. With the widespread corruption in Iraq, the crooks also do not want the war to end. Kinda like that endless war on drugs.....

Apart from those overt economic supporters of the war, there are the covert interests that quest for oil. These factors operate in Iraq where oil reserves are among the largest in the world, and in Afghanistan where secure oil pipeline routes from Central Asia to the Bay of Bengal are sought. In Iraq there is also the hopeless Henry Kissinger/Israeli dream of pipelines for fresh water and oil from Iraq to Haifa, Israel. Bush has decided to fight for these natural resources rather than to buy them. In a moment, when the president briefly escaped his White House handlers, he declared that the Iraqi war is needed to protect oil from terrorists. Not even his dog Barney believes him on that one. Colonial wars are always bloody, dirty, expensive and, at least in the 20th century, lost. Have yet to find a big oil company who is not prepared to do business with Beelzebub if the price is right...

In addition to the overt and covert economic reasons to continue the wars, there are political/military reasons. Like Willy Sutton, who robbed banks because that was where the money was, GWB picked Iraq; he attacked a place where the US can straddle a geographic area that is a heartland that abuts oil rich Iran and Saudi Arabia. Though this presence does not intimidate crazy, suicidal Jihadists, it does frighten and make the legitimate Iranian and Saudi governments nervous – the US has projected its ground forces right on their borders as well as a mighty navy and air force that have recently deployed closer.

The other reason the US appears to be in Iraq is that Israel wants it there to provide a national security shield for them. By now it is crystal clear that pro Israel neocons made up intelligence to promote the war. Ex-Deputy Sec Def Wolfowitz brought the creepy neocons into the Pentagon under Rumsfeld and Cheney. The Israeli newspaper, The Jerusalem Post, even made "Wolfy" Man Of The Year.

Last week, Defense Department reports were sent to congress that documented ex Pentagon neocon assistant undersecretary Douglas Feith's nefarious role in providing disinformation on the Iraqi war; information that Team Bush too eagerly bought without Intelligence Community confirmation. Senator Levin, Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, pointed out that the report indicated that nothing unauthorized or illegal transpired. Senator Jay Rockefeller, Chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, unlike Levin, declared he is uncertain that no laws were broken. One thing for certain is that Feith's corrupt, cooked intelligence was intentionally used by Bush to justify the war. The squalid Iranian agent Chalibi was also hatched and paid for by Feith's office – the corrosive policies for disbanding the Iraqi Army and police were formulated in Feith's office. Let us hope Senator Rockefeller is not as forgiving as Senator Levin. The contemptible Feith simply promoted the war for Bush like a cheap New York second-hand clothing salesman. TURN ON THE GREEN LIGHT; THE MAN WANTS TO BUY A GREEN SUIT...

Behind closed doors this foreign Israeli influence permeated the debate on the run up to the invasion of Iraq. The two Israeli spies in jail, and two more under indictment for espionage against the US, makes the one-sided US support of Israel hollow and scary. There is little open criticism of Israel, because of the political/economic power of the foreign Israeli lobby which appears to be perfectly legal until laws are passed to curb it. No lawmaker has this on his agenda. The Israeli lobby is unchecked because it is a major influence to both US major political parties, stemming from generous political contributions and over friendly coverage by an uncritical and therefore complicit media.

So there are a combination of diverse interests that want the war in Iraq to be one without end. And those influences appear stronger than the American voters' desire to end the war. At least that is the way it is reflected in congress today.

French itinerant intellectual aristocrat Alexis de Torqueville, who travelled throughout USA in the 19th century, wrote and pontificated on a whole range of social and political subjects based on his first hand observations of America. His works often are cited copiously by scholars who are always tempted to use him as an oracle to describe past, present and future events in our America. In this, I also plead guilty. His sad observation that the United States will destroy itself through greed, and competing self interests stuck with me as most of his other ideas faded from my memories. And without any doubt, that self destructive phenomenon appears to have descended now into the life of America. Colonel Robert E Bartos USA RET

*Photograph: Se repulen by Francisco de Goya (Translation of title: They get polished)

Friday, February 09, 2007

The National Estimate Strikes Again

The sixteen interagency intelligence organizations of the US Intelligence Community, also known as the Gang That Couldn't Shoot Straight, has produced another national intelligence estimate. This one is called, PROSPECTS FOR IRAQ’S STABILITY: A CHALLENGING ROAD AHEAD. Its publication had been intentionally stalled by the Administration until after the 2006 general election, since it essentially bears bad news for GW Bush's impossible dream in Iraq.

Let us get one thing straight from the beginning: the document is a political statement rather than a substantive intelligence estimate of the situation. That unclassified part open to the public is a summary; a summary that even had to be negotiated among the gang of sixteen. This corporate committee approach to the production of intelligence can only produce a spongy, carefully construed piece of ambiguity that means all things to each of its participants. When you read the text, it is like taking a bite of cotton candy: it is there and then it is not. Even the elliptical economic statements of ex-Federal Reserve Chairman, artful dodger Alan Greenspan, that could challenge talented Talmudic scholars, are examples of clarity when compared to the text of National Intelligence Estimates.

You do not need to read this national intelligence estimate to conclude that the situation in Iraq is grave and out of control – the war, probably lost. Just study the growing US and Iraqi casualties. TV films of the the burning cities and massive destruction of property by insurgents and by US forces trying to destroy insurgent firing ports, illustrate the hopelessness of reconstruction of the country in combat. Iraq is being demolished faster than reconstructed. Concrete is poured into fortifications rather than buildings and infrastructure. What was once an architectural jewel in the Arab world is being smashed daily by forces unleashed by war. Going after Saddam, Bush succeeded in throwing the baby out with the bath water. And that, will be his brutal legacy. In no way can the country be rebuilt with the presence of US troops who will have to destroy even more to defend themselves. Had there been apolitical participation in the national intelligence estimate, this point would have been driven into the summary or failing, an agency should have tried to prevent inter agency concurrence in the flawed document.

In all fairness, the summary portion of the national intelligence estimate does not normally contain footnotes or dissents by the agencies, but given the tone of the summary, seriously doubt any bureaucratic entity fell on its sword over any issue. That the Administration published it was not an act of courage or forthrightness. It was compelled by the widely broadcast miserable military and political situation in Iraq and charges that Bush delayed publication until after the 2006 election.

The national intelligence estimate does its best to straddle the fence. One thesis in the estimate that Bush apparachiks seized on in the cascading debris of bad news was that US troop withdrawal from Iraq could cause even more chaos than if they remained. It would be interesting to read the arguments to support this contention. You would find lots of "WHAT IFs". On the contrary, US troop presence is exacerbating the situation. US commanders in Iraq argued against surge for that reason. Even General Casey, triangulating, trying to appeal to a skeptical Congress to approve his confirmation for Army Chief of Staff, said two brigades would be sufficient rather than the five proposed by Team Bush. Let us hope at least one agency in the Intelligence Community had the courage to footnote the negative impact of continued occupation. I believe that the national intelligence estimate was released now, as contorted and qualified as it is, to buttress the Bush surge by arguing things could be worse in Iraq if the US retreated. This provides cover for the politicians who vote to stay the course or even surge in Iraq. When things go haywire, they can always argue they were misled by faulty intelligence. It worked for Bush before; why not run the same play again?

Carnage in Iraq is reaching new heights with the killing of over 125 Shiites in a Baghdad Market last weekend by a suicide bomber in a truck loaded with fresh produce. Sure the Sunnis will be blamed, the Maliki government will be blamed along with its keystone cops and ragtag army and al Qaeda, but in the end, the US will be the object of more intense hatred for its failure to provide security. As the US put more pressure on el Sadr Militia, it pulled back from its check points in Baghdad Shiite areas and it was not replaced by Maliki or US forces; as a result the bomber, disguised by his vegetables, penetrated, and struck in a very deadly way. Perhaps the change of the US command in Baghdad contributed to the disarray and this failure. If these were the circumstances, it will take a lot of free soccer balls and candy from US troops to the Iraqis to compensate for that unacceptable, bloody tactical blunder.

SECDEF Gates in a sophist, banal and analytical word game, declared that the situation is very complicated in Iraq – there is an anti American insurgency, Sunni vs Shiite sectarian killing, and of course, the al Qaeda terrorists who try to kill everybody; meanwhile, Iranians are insidiously undermining the whole US effort. Any leadership with brains would depart from this charnel house soonest rather than permit its troops to be ripped apart, imbedded in the chaos without a clear mission. What is the mission? Kill Sunnis? Kill Shiite Militia? Kill al Qaeda? Kill Iranians? One thing for certain, US troops are killed regularly at higher rates each day, while US politicians, detached, posture and play with nuances. Edwards and Obama are the only serious Democratic presidential candidates who want out of Iraq. New York Senator Clinton, a pitiful captive of the Israeli lobby, criticizes Bush on the war, but wants to stay the course with permanent war. As for Republican candidates such as McCain, they believe dying is patriotic even if there is no clear mission except stand and die... Republican Hagel, though he categorically disagrees with this sick attitude, is still not a candidate.

When Edwards was asked on MEET THE PRESS last Sunday to explain why in the beginning he supported the Iraq war and Obama did not, he, with candor, surprisingly replied that he had read the national intelligence and Obama had not! If you get a chance, read Obama's statement made while he was still a state senator in Springfield, Illinois. Not only did he come out strongly against the invasion, he very presciently predicted the resulting chaos. Obama may not have the experience or gravitas to be president, but his high IQ and better judgement surpass most of his bumbling colleagues in congress. Moral of this story – do not rely on warped US national intelligence products if you are a policy or law maker. Use your head and judgement, and keep your finger out of the wind... Colonel Robert E Bartos USA RET

*Photograph: Devota Profesion, an etching by Francisco de Goya

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Bush – Lost in his own Labyrinth

When a leader, in this case our Commander and Chief, has to tell himself and his minions repeatedly that he is the decision maker or in charge, he usually is not. No one disputes GW Bush has executive powers. What is in doubt is who makes him act and talk so foolishly, and continuously make disastrous decisions. He reminds me of the actor in the film A FISH CALLED WANDA, where the main character smells his armpits to give himself strength and self confidence... GW Bush more and more appears as a lost soul; ironically, lost in the maze he has constructed.

VEEP Dick Cheney, our grand master of draft deferments, is by most experts believed to be Trilby Bush's Svengali, but he has higher priorities now than to rescue GWB from himself. Cheney is caught in a web of legal problems as he prepares to defend himself and his numero uno pistolero, Scooter Libby, with sworn testimony before a federal judge and jury. Cheney is the bold fighting flagship for the Administration. He is a formidable battleship, but since the 2006 elections, he must advance more carefully. Remember the BISMARCK was sunk, and more recently, the dreadnought RUMSFELD went below the waves...

Adding to his misery, this week two of Bush's own sleigh dogs turned and bit him. Two Republican Alpha males, Senators Warner and Hagel, stopped pulling the sled, broke their traces loose, and nailed him for his so called surge reinforcement into Iraq. Both are propounding a resolution, driving the point that more troops to Iraq is self-defeating. Bush has responded with smoke and mirrors by changing the subject. Out of the blue, said he is going to get tough on Iranians in Iraq who are busy foiling his stratagems and killing Americans. Did the rules of engagement protect Iranians shooting Americans? Unbelievable, you mean to tell me we were taking hits in Iraq from the Iranians before this announcement without smacking back with deadly force? If this is true, Bush may as well delegate his commander-and-chief authority to Donald Duck...

Reliable US intelligence sources claim up to 100,000 Iranian military advisors are now in Iraq – they provide training, military equipment and infernal devices mainly to Shiite militias. Under General Sanchez's and General Casey's noses, the Shiite militia has grown from about 8,000 to 100,000. Though not united, this force is spread in Baghdad and in Southern Iraq along the US Main Supply Routes from Kuwait. Actually the British troops that occupied Southern Iraq turned a blind eye on this penetration. This Iranian trained force moved into police and security units in and around Basra; as long as the peace was kept and British Petroleum interests were not trashed, coalition forces remained unperturbed. Even the police stations bore a Shiite militia recuitinting posters pasted to the walls. News reports from Southern Iraq are few and far between in US media since a US reporter was killed in Basra by police a few years ago... British troops are eagerly kissing Southern Iraq good-by in the next few months.

Uncertain what prompted Bush to announce publicly last week what he should have been doing in Iraq to counter Iranian operatives all along. One report is that the Deputy NSC neocon Elliot Abrams put him up to it to ratchet up the tension with Iran. Abrams, apparently dented by the Holocaust, also wanted Bush to call the Iranians Nazis, but Bush apparently did not bite on that hysteria. Perhaps Bush's statement was made to coincide last week with Israeli Premier Olmert's 251st declaration that Israel will not stand by as Iran goes nuclear. As leader of the free world, Bush might want to urge the premier not to panic and start WWIII... As president of the US, he might want ask to Olmert why he violated US/Israel accords and dropped US cluster bombs on civilians in Lebanon – Katuyshka rockets Panic?

There were two incidents last week in Iraq that underscored vulnerabilities of Bush's so-called “New Way Forward” that envisioned the embedding of US forces in Iraqi formations. One was at Karbala where five US soldiers were killed while advising locals on security arrangements – Iraqi security permitted insurgents disguised as English speaking American military personnel to enter the compound to kill and capture the Americans. One American was killed immediately. The other four were executed 20 miles away handcuffed to each other. One of the insurgents was reported to be blond haired. Why the US military stalled for days reporting the details of the incident is open to speculation. The other incident involves the US Iraqi military combined operations against Sunnis on Haifa Street in Baghdad near The Green Zone. Apparently the Shiite Iraq troops show up late for the operations – they are happy go lucky and let the US take lead in all operations. Saw a film clip where an Iraqi soldier knocked on a door to gain entry. When nothing happened, he stood aside as a US soldier battered down the door... General Patreaus, our new troop commander in Iraq, may have to revise his new field manual on counter insurgency.

In the last few days there appeared planted stories that link the deadly raid at Karbala to Iran. It is argued that it was too sophisticated to carried out by Iraqi insurgents – I do not know about that – al Queda certainly is capable and the Iraqis have cleverly demonstrated they can steal from the US occupation authorities with very little consequences. The striking thing about Karbala incident was that it appeared to be a hostage operation that went wrong at the end. Otherwise, why would the captives have not been killed on the spot rather than 20 miles away? The US holds diplomatic Iranian prisoners taken in a recent raid on an office in Iraq. So the incident could have been a retaliation operation that went haywire on the Iranians. Iranians, as Jimmy Carter learned, do not play by the Marquis of Queensbury rules, so this scenario cannot be ruled out. However, it should not be used as a Gulf of Tonkin or Pearl Harbor provocation for a second neocon war. There are other smarter options to punish the Iranians if they are in fact guilty of the raid.

Not that GW Bush does not have his hands full changing Secretary of Defense and military commanders in mid-stream, at a critical point in the Iraq war, but his political flanks at home have been turned by the 2006 Democratic congressional victories; his center is crumbling from bipartisan Senate resolutions. Perhaps the greatest blow to his ego is that Southern Methodist University in Texas is resisting accepting his planned presidential library on campus. Given the bloody nature of Bush's term in office, his library could develop into a chamber of horrors... If it does not work out at SMU, suggest he petition Israeli Premier Olmert to establish it in Gaza to be secured by Fatah and Hamas. Or if rejected, go to his Iraqi pal Maliki to establish it on Haifa Street in Baghdad to be guarded by Shiite militias or the Iraqi Army, as if there was any difference. Colonel Robert E Bartos USA RET