A Salute For Col "Hack

November 13, 2001

Some weeks ago I was cheering as Retired Colonel David Hackworth, "Hack" to friends and foe alike, placed his hands around the neck of Alan Colmes at the end of his segment on the Hannity and Colmes Fox TV show. Jumping out of my chair, crying, "Go for it, Hack!," I scared the hell out of my three year old who was about to nod off at my feet.

This past Wednesday I was again cheering Hack as he berated CNN reporter Bob Franken on his own network. Ken Sheppard of MRC recorded it this way.
"Retired Army Colonel David Hackworth gave CNN a surprise on Wednesday night when he lashed out at a story by CNN’s Bob Franken on how Pentagon video does not show civilian casualties and how the Taliban are proving to be a tough foe two weeks after a military leader insisted they had been "eviscerated." Appearing just after Franken’s story aired, Hackworth called it "garbage,"

The statement in question was made by Lt. General Gregory Newbold: "I really do. I think, as I say, the combat power of the Taliban has been eviscerated." The truth of the matter is that the Taliban didn’t have all that much combat power to begin with. They were great at pushing around women, children and old men. However, when they came up against a real military force...Poof! But Franken tells it differently.

Franken: "Pentagon officials wish the word ‘eviscerated’ had never escaped that general's lips. Rather than being gutted, Taliban forces are still holding their ground. Al Qaeda and its leader Osama bin Laden are still presumed to be hiding in the country's vast web of caves. So-called 'bunker buster' bombs have failed to make much of a dent. Air power has limitations."

Well here we are six days later and the news this morning is that the "mighty Taliban," under cover of darkness, last night retreated in full route from Kabul without a shot being fired in anger. This is after they had already lost Mazar -I- Sharif, Baghlan, Herat and all the territory in-between. Seems like the General knew what he was talking about. To paraphrase a line from Stanley Kubick’s, Full Metal Jacket, “Want to buy a Taliban rifle, never been fired and only dropped once?”

Hack had further commented to CNN Anchor Arron Brown, "Well, I think before the American people -- in spite of guys like Mr. Franklin (sic) -- when you read that report and listen to it, it really is discouraging, when the American people slice into their turkey on Turkey Day, we will see the Taliban no longer in business. And that will not be the end of round one."

You must excuse me for a minute while I go over to the Communist News Network site and see what kind of spin they are putting on this. Probably something like, "Taliban Attacks to the Rear!"
Well it's not quite that bad:
(CNN) -- The Northern Alliance
marched into Kabul on Tuesday as
the ruling Taliban pulled out of the
city, the most dramatic development
in a rapid string of victories for the
opposition Northern Alliance.

A dramatic development indeed. It has been all the rage lately to expound on the wily, tough and courageous Taliban while reporting the disorder and nonchalance of the Northern Alliance. Even the Fox News reporter on the scene in Baghlan had taken to diss'ing the Northern troops. Not to mention all the nay Sayers opining that air power was not the answer, that American Troops had to get their boots on the ground. Sean Hannity!

General Tommy Franks, CINC CENTCOM, said the other day that he was no Norman Schwarzkopf. Frankly, no pun intended, that is the only thing the CINC has said since the war began. Oh, there was that little statement back at the beginning when he said, “No” to firing on Mullah Mohammad Omar when he was fleeing Kabul. It is really too bad that “Storming” Norman and the “Hack” are retired. If I were President Bush I would give great consideration to recalling them both to active duty. Between the two we could kick some considerable butt.

For two months now the cable news shows have had every retired general and ex-officio they could get to sit still for 90 seconds, commenting, explaining and second guessing the President and the Military's execution of this war. The only one that has been consistently on target has been Col. Hackworth.

Give'em Hell, Hack.

© 2001 John Galt

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