February 18, 2010

Obama is renaming the Iraq war — from "Operation Iraqi Freedom" to "Operation New Dawn."

It's supposed to represent some change in the nature of the war — presumably, that it's now going to be more like an improved formula for dishwashing detergent. But don't laugh. It does mean something. It means the President thinks switching labels is doing something.

ADDED: It's a new dawn! It's a new day! It's a new life! For me! And I'm feeling good!

79 comments:

Peter V. Bella said...

Because New Dawn cleans dishes better!

Jeff with one 'f' said...

It means Obama has made American victory at war safe for even Democrats to support!

Loretta said...

Hold on, People, this might mean Sunset provisions will kick in.

Andrea said...

Hey, that's one of my favorite Joy Division songs!

Oh wait -- the song is called "New Dawn Fades." Never mind.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GqUFbd8aAN0

TosaGuy said...

WOLVER!!!!!!!!! ......sorry, couldn't go through with it.

John Lynch said...

Hey, if they want to take credit for it, fine. That means they have an interest in Iraq not going to shit. That's a good thing.

Lem said...

In our house Dawn always makes the longest lasting suds.

Does that mean a longer stay in Iraq?

former law student said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Robin said...

In Obama's world it's all about style over substance. Why go deep when you can just keep floating on the surface? Sometimes I'm just so got by the fact that when Obama was running for President, Republicans tried to get the media to delve deeper into his experience with executive leadership (non-existent) and his history of riding the fence whenever possible (vote present, much?). We are now seeing what that lack of experience and that inability to risk and commit to a tough decisions looks like in a President.

I assume he has core beliefs--he talks like he does anyway, but he doesn't act on them. He's neither hot nor cold. He isn't living up to liberal beliefs (which admittedly I would hate) but doesn't have the guts to admit he was wrong about anything (Guantanamo? trials in NY?). Really, he's Bush in liberal clothing. He talks the talk, but he doesn't walk the walk. Bush talked conservative ideals but then exploded the government-size.

former law student said...

It means the President thinks switching labels is doing something.

Why not take what Secretary Gates said at face value? Consider the following:

- Operation Iraqi Freedom started March 20, 2003 with the invasion of Iraq.

- The end of the conventional phase of the war was marked in May, 2003 with W.' landing on an aircraft carrier in front of a huge "Mission Accomplished" banner.

- By July of 2008, the "surge," aka the New Way Forward, was acknowledged to have worked.

So it's fairly safe to say that by now, seven years later, the Iraqis are freed, the Operation is over and we can all move on.

Gates writes that by changing the name at the same time as the change of mission -- the scheduled withdrawal of U.S. combat troops -- the US is sending "a strong signal that Operation IRAQI FREEDOM has ended and our forces are operating under a new mission."

2/18/10 10:40 PM

vw: conge - "leave" as to take one's leave of a gathering.

bela lugosi's dead said...

America's finally getting its Nude On.

Lem said...

He's neither hot nor cold.

New Dawn will work both hot and cold water just as well.

EDH said...

There's a feeling I get when I look to the west
And my spirit is crying for leaving...

And a new day will dawn for those who stand long
And the forest will echo with laughter

Does anybody remember laughter?


wv-"howeed" = it must be good stuff, I got it from a ho

buster said...

Another way of repudiating George Bush. The pettiness of Obama is amazing.

buster said...

Another way of repudiating George Bush. The pettiness of Obama is amazing.

Scott M said...

I've tried since last January to take this administration at face value. More often than not, you end up lied to, nuanced, or otherwise bullshitted.

From your post, FLS, it sounds like we won. Are you among those that agree with the administration's attempt to claim this victory as one of it's greatest achievements? Don't give me any milquetoast about it being Biden's comment. He's a very large facet of the administration and he's also, one would think, adult enough to know that.

The fact that both Obama and Biden were against the surge would be funny if it weren't so tragic. Much like Biden's slice-n-dice strategy that, by merely making it an official "idea" from a sitting US senator, may have ramped up violence and prolonged the war. What, were the Sunni's just going to give up the oil to the north and south and dwindle into squalor?

Jason said...

I find the renaming offensive.

former law student said...

Another way of repudiating George Bush.

George Bush renamed his "Operation Get Lucky with Laura Welch" long before Jenna and Barbara were born.

Lem said...

The tall man in black wins the gold. Hes an American.

Go USA.

Skyler said...

What an unbelievably shallow man.

I'll bet the silly ribbon candy collectors at the pentagon will insist on issuing another medal now.

Bob said...

Obama will claim that Operation Iraqi Freedom was an unsuccessful stalemate, and that Operation New Dawn, on the other hand, was a roaring success.

jimbino said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jayne_cobb said...

It may be idiotic, but it still makes more sense than:

"Man caused disasters"

OldGrouchy Doug Wright said...

Will Bush be invited to the victory parade?

wv: donat now to the cause!

Alex said...

Why is that FLS just knee-jerk defends Obama on anything? I've never heard him criticize Obama for anything except not being left-wing enough.

former law student said...

Why is that FLS just knee-jerk defends Obama on anything?

Criticizing Obama here would be coals to Newcastle. A spit in the ocean.

Figure any thread I don't defend him I'm agreeing with his critics.

Methadras said...

What was President Barely's code name operation supposed to be? Red Dawn?

former law student said...

"New Dawn" is consistent with what Obama has said before:

Dec 3, 2008

Obama team promises 'new dawn'
By Jim Lobe

WASHINGTON - Introducing the top figures in his national security team in Chicago on Monday, United States president-elect Barack Obama promised a "new dawn of American leadership" that will be marked by much greater emphasis on diplomacy and multilateralism than the incumbent George W Bush administration.


And Operation New Dawn resonates in Iraq as well, because Operation Al-Fajr (New Dawn) was the name of the fight for Fallujah.

Alex said...

FLS - admit it you're nothing but a partisan hack if you will NEVER criticize Obama just to spite us.

Revenant said...

Gates writes that by changing the name at the same time as the change of mission -- the scheduled withdrawal of U.S. combat troops -- the US is sending "a strong signal that Operation IRAQI FREEDOM has ended and our forces are operating under a new mission."

Which is... what, exactly? What is the goal that our troops have today, that they didn't have yesterday?

former law student said...

What is the goal that our troops have today, that they didn't have yesterday?

Ah. Rev and the professor think the tail is wagging the dog.

The mission changed some time back, but no one changed the name until now.

When did World War II end?

After the European surrender?
The Japanese surrender?
The Marshall Plan completed?
The US pulled all their troops out of Germany and Japan (Hint: hasn't happened yet.)

Do we still talk about World War II as if it were still going on?

Marcia said...

It's morning in Mesopotamia.

Marcia said...

new dawn --
What other kind is there?

Cedarford said...

Pretty much on mark.
Bush spent 1 trillion and 30,000 casualties to, as he put it "Give the noble democracy-hungry, freedom-loving Iraqis those two wonderful gifts".

Well, consider them gifted. And proceeding to fuck it all up. As many assumed the Iraqis would.

Given that, it is appropriate to end "Operation Iraqi Freedom" and assume that, so gifted at such a huge price to the USA - it is a "New Dawn" for Iraq to revel in their neocon-bestowed freedom and democracy.

After 8 years, Americans generally think that is well long enough to be rid of that morass. They never bought into the idea of "saving" in Bush's Christian sense - people trying to kill us in endless war waged at any price to the US debt.

Joan said...

Why not take what Secretary Gates said at face value?

Better to ask, why should we?

This administration needs to earn its trust.

Jason (the commenter) said...

Isn't it a little late to be renaming the war? It's like renaming a five year old. "Oh, I decided I don't like Bob anymore. From now on we're going to call you Henry."

Jason (the commenter) said...

The most shocking thing is that Obama heard this idea and thought it was good. It's like something from Yes, Prime Minister.

edutcher said...

Ya know that spot on Halo Joe's forehead? That's not ashes from Wednesday because he's such a good Catholic (anti-abortion and all...), the Silly Putty fell off the hole in his head and all the bad ideas are falling out.

Since it's now The Zero's VICTORY, he needs a catchy new name for it. Sounds like Joe, doesn't it?

former law student said...

Another way of repudiating George Bush.

George Bush renamed his "Operation Get Lucky with Laura Welch" long before Jenna and Barbara were born.


No, she found him, not the other way around. Miss Laura saw his innate worth, moron. You really can be a fool sometimes.

When did World War II end?

After the European surrender?
The Japanese surrender?
The Marshall Plan completed?
The US pulled all their troops out of Germany and Japan (Hint: hasn't happened yet.)


I believe if you check a history book, instead of pulling up Kos trying to find witty things to say, you'll see Harry Truman declared it over sometime in 1946.

As for the troops being there, there was another war going on. That Cold one? I know you never heard of it.

Do we still talk about World War II as if it were still going on?

Apparently you do.

AllenS said...

This is a brilliant idea. It would also be a good time to offer for sale, Operation New Dawn commemorative plates and coins. fls and garage could add them to their collection.

kentuckyliz said...

It's Morning in Iraq.

(Marcia beat me to it...and hers was alliterative)

WV turtidi
a martini made out of a turd

Florida said...

With Obama murdering suspects using unmanned drones instead of taking them into custody and giving them a fair trial, that's gotta be a hit against the brand, wouldn't you think?

So, softening America's image with those he's hunting down overseas using the Mad Men of Madison Avenue is surely the way to go.

See, there's some Change for you! Huh? Huh?

Nice job, anti-war movement. Heckofajob, Brownies!

Paul Zrimsek said...

Does it matter? Most of the troops are going to Afghanistan anyway to take part in Operation Fluffy Kittens.

museisluse said...

Wasn't victory in the "New Dawn" operation of 2004 already declared?

William said...

Mahmoud: 'Barack, why do your wars always smell nicer than mine. I can't ever seem to get the stain of torture and death off mine.'

Barack: 'Why Mahmoud, I asked my Mullah. I'd never heard of new, improved Dawn. Why even the beast Ronald knew that "It's morning in America", a concept washing out all sin.

Mahmoud: 'Then why don't people lisen. I'm having to resort to the Revolutionary Guard to restore discipline here.'

Barack: 'Well, you just need a better speechwriter, a teleprompter, and Joe Biden, whom I'll be sending along, to divert attention. Just use "New Dawn" and your reputation will clean right up.'

Steve said...

Ok people. I am certainly not an Obama fan. I am a vet of Iraq and Afghanistan and all this "renaming" outrage is unwarranted. Lets check the history of the Iraq Campaign:

OIF 1) Liberation of Iraq – March 19, 2003 to May 1, 2003. (End marked by 'Mission Accomplished')


OIF 2) Transition of Iraq – May 2, 2003 to June 28, 2004.

OIF 3) Iraqi Governance – June 29, 2004 to Dec. 15, 2005.

OIF 4) National Resolution – Dec. 16, 2005 to a date to be determined

I was in Iraq from 05-06 (OIF 3 and 4) so I must wear 2 stars on my medal denoting 2 campaigns rather than 1 star denoting one deployment.

What does the renaming mean? In my mind, it means OIF 4 is over. At the least, it means he was faced with a choice of naming an OIF 5 or creating a new mission under a new banner. Given the change in mission under the SOFA, I think his choice is entirely appropriate.

This is also a declaration of victory.

We will have to wait and see how Obama commemorates the event. He should celebrate the day as a V-Day but he can't. Politically, he cannot declare victory over Iraq since he would be declaring it over the new leaders...surely an insult.

The visuals of transitioning from one Operation to the next will be tricky, we will have to wait to see how Obama does. Trouble is, he is more concerned with trumpeting his historic achievements than the Nation's or Iraq's so...I think we know how it will go.

Just a side note, a gracious and humble president would share the stage with GW on that day...but Obama won't. He will let Slow Biden give him all the credit for the victory and score, my prediction, 243 personal references in the speech.

I will think Obama will muck it up but ultimately this is a natural step in the life cycle of an operation.

traditionalguy said...

The USA as a strong horse that would do whatever was necessary to defeat the Al Qaeda forces and the remaining Tikriti fascists in Iraq is being shoved down the memory hole ASAP so that Biden and the One King can exult in their victory as Community Organisers in Chief. Lots of luck with that one.

JBlog said...

Wait -- I thought we lost the Iraq war.

I'm pretty sure it was in all the newspapers.

Hoosier Daddy said...

Whatever happened to "Operation GTFO of Iraq" that he campaigned on?

I'm surprised that Gitmo hasn't been renamed Fantasy Island.

lyssalovelyredhead said...

Steve, I really enjoyed your comment. Thank you for your service.

I would like a president who is able to actually use the word "victory" when declaring it.

WV: "asurge"- a surge was a good idea; thanks for making it happen Former President Bush! (despite the opposition of Former-Senators Biden and Obama).

Shanna said...

What was President Barely's code name operation supposed to be? Red Dawn?

Wolverine!!!

Seriously, I loathe these name changes. It's just a hassle to change all the paperwork and it means nothing.

Maguro said...

It's not even clear that Obama has anything to do with this silliness. It could very well be some re-branding idea that the SecDef's office came up with on their own.

Or, as Skyler noted, someone within DoD could be pushing this as an excuse to issue more medals, ribbons and other military frippery.

I give it a big "Who cares?"

Skyler said...

Steve, I was in OIF 04-06. That was in 2005.

For the life of me, I have never been able to explain what 04-06 means. At the same time, some people were calling it OIF III.

All I really know is that the army is legally required to give everything an acronym, and we had to comply.

Bomb? Nope, have to call it IED
Car bomb? No it's VBIED
Suicice car bomb? SVBIED
Bomb on a donkey? DBIED (I'm not kidding)

Even the army ranks are designed for three letter entry into a computer. It's a culture of subordinating people to computers.

I don't know which is worse, calling the War in Iraq some political gobbledygook acronym, or making another euphemistic gobbledygook acronym to replace it. Two wrongs don't makea right.

Hoosier Daddy said...

I would like a president who is able to actually use the word "victory" when declaring it.

If he gets his health care bill passed I'm sure you'll hear it.

Cosmo said...

Did he just finish the Stephanie Meyers vampire books? Will this mean O will start sporting a fauxhawk and dump Michelle for a goth chick?

or

Did C. Thomas Howell make the announcement while shouting "WOLVERINES" from atop a troop transport?

Steve said...

Skyler,

Without seeing the actual dates of your deployment I can't say for sure but it appears you were present for OIF III and OIF IV. There is no such thing as OIF 6 (or 5) so I don't know what your guys are talking about. Your campaigns are probably the Iraqi Governance and National Resolution Campaigns; check the dates a previously listed against your DD214. If your service was from 27JUN04 to 17DEC05, you will have served in three Iraq campaigns and you would need to wear three bronze campaign stars or you will be out of uniform. Many soldiers do not know that there MUST be at least one campaign star on their Iraq and Afghanistan ribbons.

Like I said, OIF IV is still active with a TBD end date. OIF IV HAS to end sometime and the obvious time is the hard date in the SOFA. The change in name is just interesting non-news to me.

What is interesting is how the victory will be discussed.

What is also interesting is that they recycled a previous operation's name, a bloody one at that. I believe at Hotair, they call that an Obamateurism.

Michael said...

War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength.

Opus One Media said...

Well we could call it (old) "Operation Miserable Failure" and (new) "Light in the tunnel of darkness" but some of the right wing babies on this blog might take offense that their former commander in chief (mr. mission accomplished) was a fool, idiot and charleton all rolled into one and that wouldn't do would it? I mean would it? ya'know.

ya'betcha.

Michael said...

Opus Media One: A "Charleton?" As in Charleton Heston? You idiot, go read an "historical" novel.

PatCA said...

I hope he brings back the Roman temple set for the signing ceremony. I think a good backdrop could change everything!

Paul Zrimsek said...

Cut Opus some slack. He was up dancing the Charleton until the new dawn.

ElcubanitoKC said...

Hope and Change redux

wv: fatiest ([sic]*shudder*)

ElcubanitoKC said...

He's just really channeling his inner Nina Simone:

"It's a new dawn, it's a new day..."

wv: gratimp (a desperate pimp?)

caseym54 said...

And "freedom" is bad why?

submandave said...

I'm largely with Steve, but I'll add a little bit of the sausage making behind-the-scenes info he and Skylar probably didn't care about when they were in country (BTW, thanks, guys and/or gals).

In today's military, non-regular funding for operations are tied to CJCS Project (or Contingency) Codes. For example, 9GF is the code used for Operation Enduring Freedom, although I know that we were still using this to fund orders for OIF in 2003 since there was not (and I believe still not) a designated code specific to any of the phases of OIF.

Also related to the CJCS code is the reserve mobilization authorization. For example, the contingency code for Bosnia allowed for what is called Presidential Recall, and orders are limited to 365 days under 10 USC 12304(a). Prior to 2006 this used to be 270 days and these were often called "270PRC Orders." 9GF (OEF/OIF), however, authorized partial mobilization, which permits mobilization of up to a million for up to two consecutive years under 10 USC 12302(a). One reason I remember being discussed as to why new codes weren't issued for OIF was that is had something to do with the mobilization eligibility. While I'm not still plugged in to the data stream, I suspect that the OIF I/II/III/IV business was the way they enabled multiple mobilizations of Guard and Reservists for the same contingency code, but have no factual basis for that assumption.

So, while I agree with Steve that the name change is probably embematic of a change in scope/goal, I also would nto be surprised to find it also has a basis in the byzantine world of defense funding and possibly an intended change to mobilization authorization. In military terms, "stand-by to stand-by."

former law student said...

No, she found him, not the other way around.

So W. was some peacock prettyboy, passively waiting for chicks to hit on him?

Interesting insight into W.'s character.

Skyler said...

Steve wrote: Without seeing the actual dates of your deployment I can't say for sure but it appears you were present for OIF III and OIF IV. There is no such thing as OIF 6 (or 5) so I don't know what your guys are talking about. Your campaigns are probably the Iraqi Governance and National Resolution Campaigns; check the dates a previously listed against your DD214. If your service was from 27JUN04 to 17DEC05, you will have served in three Iraq campaigns and you would need to wear three bronze campaign stars or you will be out of uniform. Many soldiers do not know that there MUST be at least one campaign star on their Iraq and Afghanistan ribbons.

Yep, this is exactly what I was talking about. No disrespect to you, but this is just another example of how stupid the ribbon candy games have gotten.

I was in OIF 04-06. This is the official name of whatever I was involved in, given to us by MNFW (multi-national forces west). See, more stupid acronyms. My entire time there and since then, I have not gotten anyone to be able to explain why being in Al Anbar, Iraq from Feb - Oct 2005 is OIF 04-06. But that's what it was called, I assure you. We were very specifically told that we were not in OIF III, though many still called it that.

We were given the option of wearing the older medal (I forget the name, was it the GWOT?) or the newer medal, the Iraq Campaign Medal. Many people opted for the older one because if they came for another deployment they'd only get a star on the newer medal (now two stars because now they've made the first one is free for some reason) instead of another kind of ribbon.

Such frivolousness. It's all unbecoming of men to get all caught up in silly ribbons. It's almost girly to want pretty things on your clothing.

And don't even get me started on the Combat Action Ribbon. In the Gulf War the Marines gave it to anyone who went over the border of Kuwait or Iraq for any reason. Now it is the most coveted ribbon (not even a medal) and staffs spend ungodly hours for months and years on end arguing and submitting people (mostly themselves) for it only to be rejected time and again. I got a phone call from one of my Marines just last year still asking me about what the battalion is going to do about all the CAR's that weren't awarded.

The modern military has gotten a taste for medals, and as much as I despise B. Hussein and this shallow means to further show his intense hatred for anything associated with Bush, I think there are plenty of shallow people in the military who will insist on another medal being struck so they can further pretend to be great war heros to those who don't know better.

Just for existing I got the following medals:

National Defense Service Medal: For being in the military during the war
Iraq Campaign Medal: For being in a unit that went to Iraq
Global War on Terrorism: For being in the military during the war (see the NDSM above)
Armed Forces Reserve Medal, with a big fat M on it: For being activated from the reserves during a war

Four medals for doing all the same thing. It's stupid. Now, there will likely be a new ribbon for OND. People in Iraq on Sept 1 during the name change will be allowed to wear both and a lot of people will think that's just the greatest thing ever.

LordSomber said...

How about we call it "Episode IV: A New Hope"?

Roger J. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Roger J. said...

Hey HD: the word you were trying to use/spell is charlatan--are you really that ignorant? that the best cheese you have? ya betcha douchbag

Revenant said...

The mission changed some time back, but no one changed the name until now.

And to think you disputed Ann's claim that Obama was just "switching labels".

So when Obama promised "new dawn of American leadership", what he meant was "I'll keep doing what Bush was doing, but call it something else". Good to know -- not that we didn't already KNOW that about Obama, of course. :)

Original Mike said...

I think we should rename the country. Since the Northwest Territories didn't use it, "BOB" is still available.

Mark said...

I have the surreal feeling we're living in some fantasy Douglas Adams had before dying.

Zaphod Beblebrox could take Obama's place, the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation could replace the bureaucracy, and the editorial board of Megadodo Publications could replace Congress, and no one would be the wiser or any worse off.

Battlefield Biker said...

I'm reminded of Churchill's maxims on naming military operations. (from memory, so pardon if I'm a bit off) 1. don't be boastful or over-confident. 2. Don't be flippant or goofy. 3. Remember no one wants to hear their son died in Operation Happy-go-lucky.
Operation New Dawn runs a fine line on these.

Ray said...

When the New Dawn generates the inevitable fog of war, do we get Red Dawn?

OldGrouchy Doug Wright said...

Of course, the name of the upcoming operation is reminiscent of that old saying: "Red sky at night, sailor's delight. Red sky in morn, sailor's forlorn!"

So, we wait for whatever comes next with the dawn!

ic said...

Be afraid, be very afraid. The last administration's "failed" policy is this administration's greatest achievement. We still have 3 more years to spiral down.

Gary Rosen said...

fls:

"By July of 2008, the "surge," aka the New Way Forward, was acknowledged to have worked."

Acknowledged by whom? Not by the Obama or the Democrats who were still demagoguing the war. And certainly not by the MSM who pretty much deep-sixed coverage of the war when the situation improved. And probably not by you.

عشتار العراقية said...

I am an Iraqi writer, in my blog, I have asked the same question What does New Dawn mean for Iraq and Iraqis. Is it really their New Dawn?

This is my answer which I hope you will consider:

New Dawn is a biblical term, associated mostly with Isaiah the Prophet who predicted the destruction of Babylon and a New Dawn for Zion.

عشتار العراقية said...

Sorry , forgot to introduce myself. My pseudonym is Ishtar, which is the name of a Babylonian goddess. My blog URL is

http://ishtar-enana.blogspot.com

It is in Arabic.