Sunday, August 15, 2004

More on the War in Iraq

Can we avoid a catastrophe in Iraq? No, unfortunately, we cannot. The war has turned out to be, as everyone should have seen, a strategic disaster, and there is nothing that can be done about it. Here is Kaplan:

"This is a terribly grim thing to say, but there might be no solution to the problem of Iraq. There might be nothing we can do to build a path to a stable, secure, let alone democratic regime. And there's no way we can just pull out without plunging the country, the region, and possibly beyond into still deeper disaster."

Wolfowitz, Feith, Rumsefeld, Krauthammer, Kristol and all the rest of the cheery Neocons who got us into the mess ought to be sent down the river. What kind of country are we living in when Martha Stewart goes to jail for a non-existent crime and these jokers are walking around free men? These braying banshees and their media accomplices, crying for the blood of Mulsims from Malaysia to Morocco, concocted a spider web that connected a radical Islamist like Bin Laden with a latent secularist like Hussein. And we fell for it. Acting as patrons for a foreign power, they were willing to unleash the dogs of war from the safety of their conference rooms at the American Enterprise Institute.

One thing the Neo's promised was that Iraqi’s Shia Muslims would welcome US forces with open arms. It will be a cakewalk, they chortled. We will be greeted as liberators, said the Veep. Well, look at things now.

Meanwhile, the original causus belli, that Iraq had WMDs they might use against Americans, or turn over to Islamic terrorists, has turned out to be little more than embellished tales from defectors, looking to instigate a conflict. We now know, as Scott Ritter told anyone who would listen, that Iraq did not have a weapons program and had given up nuclear ambitions in 1991!

Consequently, the administration is spinning a new rationale for the war. Mr. Bush says that, "The establishment of a free Iraq in the heart of the Middle East will be a watershed event in the global democratic revolution. Our commitment to the global expansion of the alternative to instability and to hatred and terror is...the third pillar of security."

This Wilsonian pabulum is little more than utopianism. A democratic imperialism that will bleed us dry and isolate America from the world. The administration has staked American credibility to a war we cannot win and a cause (i.e., democratism) that has no support among our people. They used the pretext of 9/11 to advance their long-standing goal of remaking the Middle East.

Writing in The American Conservative, Pat Buchanan predicted the disaster:

With our MacArthur Regency in Baghdad, Pax Americana will reach apogee. But the tide recedes, for the one endeavor at which Islamic peoples will excel is expelling imperial powers by terror and guerrilla war. They drove the Brits out of Palestine and Aden, the French out of Algeria, the Russians out of Afghanistan, the Americans out of Somalia and Beirut, the Israelis out of Lebanaon.

We have started up the road to empire and over the next hill we shall meet those who went before. The only lesson we learn from history is that we do not learn from history.

And so it has come to pass. Nearly eighteen months have passed since the fall of Baghdad and "the end of major combat operations." The war has cost more than $200 billion, nearly 1,000 young Americans have given their lives, and countless more have been wounded and maimed. In the wake of Abu Gharib, American moral credibility has vanished and Iraq is spinning toward civil war. Moreover, there is no end in sight.

Methinks it is time to look for the nearest off-ramp.


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