Sunday, July 31, 2005

"I'm sorry ... what exactly do you mean by 'Get out.'"?

And while we wait to see what happens when the folks running Iraq finally tell the U.S. to pack up its troubles and hit the road, we can at least see how well the U.S. takes this sort of suggestion elsewhere [emphasis added]:

Uzbekistan has told the United States to leave a military base that has served as a hub for missions to Afghanistan since shortly after the September 11, 2001, attacks, U.S. officials said on Saturday...

"I can confirm that our embassy in Tashkent received a diplomatic note from the Uzbek government late this week to terminate the agreement for use of the K2 air field," said State Department spokeswoman Nancy Beck.

"This is a bilateral agreement between two sovereign nations and under that agreement either side has the option to terminate the agreement," she said without elaborating.

Uzbekistan will give the United States six months to move aircraft, personnel and equipment, The Washington Post newspaper reported. The Pentagon and State Department declined to comment on any timeline.

And the best part:

The U.S. military is working with the State Department to evaluate the note "to see exactly what it means," Defense Department spokesman Glenn Flood said.

I'm sorry ... what part of "Get the fuck out and take your shit with you" seems ambiguous?

OOOOOH ... THERE'S MORE: Courtesy of the Washington Post who, occasionally, still knows how to report news but almost always regrets it immediately afterwards, we have Sec Def Donald Rumsfeld's reaction to the eviction:

"We always think ahead. We'll be fine," Rumsfeld said Sunday when asked how the United States would cope with losing the base in Uzbekistan.

Yeah, that could be this administration's motto, couldn't it: "The Bush White House -- always thinking ahead." I'm betting it's that laudable foresight that explains the last couple of paragraphs of that same article:

After the latest setback in relations, the Bush administration is going to "wait for a cooling-off period," the administration official said. "We are assuming they mean it and want us out. We are now not sending someone to Uzbekistan."

The next test will be whether to withhold as much as $22 million in aid to Uzbekistan if it does not comply with provisions on political and economic reforms it committed to undertake in a 2002 strategic partnership agreement with Washington. Last year, the administration withheld almost $11 million. U.S. officials expect the Uzbek government will again be ineligible for funds.

Now there's a good idea -- punish Uzbekistan financially for their decision. That'll certainly teach those swarthy foreigners a lesson. And it's not like there isn't some other large foreign power (*cough* China *cough*) who might be willing to step in and pony up that pittance in exchange for, oh, I don't know, military access to Uzbekistan's airfields or anything.

The Bush administration. Always looking ahead. You read it here first.


Lynne said...

We obviously need to invade that country too, so we can keep the base. We need permanent bases in the region.
Isn't that why we are in Iraq?

BnD812 said...

Morons...all of you.

Catch up on the latest and eat pie.

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Diana said...

Uzbekistan is approximately the size of Morocco and has an area of 447,400 square kilometers (172,700 sq mi). It is the 56th-largest country.

Uzbekistan stretches 1,425 kilometers (885 mi) from west to east and 930 kilometers (578 mi) from north to south. Bordering Turkmenistan to the southwest, Kazakhstan and the Aral Sea to the north, and Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan to the south and east, Uzbekistan is not only one of the larger Central Asian states but also the only Central Asian state to border all the other four.sportsbook Uzbekistan also shares a short border with Afghanistan to the south.

Uzbekistan is a dry, double-landlocked country; it is one of two double-landlocked countries in the world - the other being Liechtenstein. 10% of its territory is intensely cultivated irrigated river valleys. The highest point in Uzbekistan is Adelunga Toghi at 4,301 meters (14,111 ft).

The Climate in the Republic of Uzbekistan is continental, with little precipitation expected annually (100-200 milimeters, or 3.9-7.9 inches). The average summer temperature tends to be 400C, while the average winter temperature is around -230C.

Major cities include: Bukhara, Samarqand and Tashkent.

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