Thursday, January 11, 2007

Bush speech

In the latest speech outlining what should have been done in 2003, George Bush used the following construction to argue against withdrawal --

And we concluded that to step back now would force a collapse of the Iraqi government, tear the country apart, and result in mass killings on an unimaginable scale.

Revealing the increasingly shakily-founded Heathrow bomb plot last summer, Scotland Yard said it --

was intended to be mass murder on an unimaginable scale

So clearly the usage is doing the rounds in the terrorism business, although in Bush's case the unimaginable happens if troops leave, while in the UK case it happens with the troops already there. Both of course share a lack of understanding what "imagine" means, especially in Bush's case, where the "unimaginable" scenario is quickly followed by pundits citing precedents like Bosnia and British India.

In another part of the speech, Bush said

Even if our new strategy works exactly as planned, deadly acts of violence will continue -- and we must expect more Iraqi and American casualties.

Or, as he said to the CIA briefer who came to his vacation home in the summer of 2001 to warn about impending Bin Laden terrorist plots in the US---

All right. You've covered your ass, now.

Finally, one component of the new new plan is --

The Iraqi government will appoint a military commander and two deputy commanders for their capital.

Two deputies. One for each side of the river. The map is being implemented.