Democrats & Liberals Archives

The Timeline Dilemma

Alright, here goes: Why is it so dangerous to create a timeline, if the insurgence is in it’s last throes?

We should have the freedom to set our goals however we want to, knowing that we can deal with whatever the insurgents try. After all, they are on their way to defeat. The question is, do we have Iraq under enough control to let everybody know we’re leaving, and not invite the nation’s collapse? The consensus is no.

Why would that be the case if we’re winning the war?

That's the dilemma of the Bush administrations stance (or rather pose) on the war. Yes, we've got things under control, no, we can't give the enemy we supposedly have under control the idea that we're leaving.

Fundamental to any measure of our readiness to leave, is Iraq's ability to keep it's own peace. The Bush Administration is implying that the Iraqis will soon be able to do that for themselves. The reason is obvious: America is weary of this war, and the Bush administration knows that a drug out occupation is a political liability. It's disingenuous, though to maintain unfounded claims of success to do that. Strike that, it's dishonest.

And guess what? Nobody's fooled. There is nothing so impotent as a deception nobody buys. Most of America thinks this war was a bad idea, and it's not because the press is liberal. It's because the Bush administration has been promising that we'd turn the corner, that all at once at some point, the insurgents would realize it's not worth it, and admit defeat.

Yet every day, those insurgents succeed in killing our soldiers and the Iraqis we're supposed to be saving. Their attacks have not gone down, but have continued and even increased. If we left, we know the place would only get worse.

This is what is sucking the morale out of people. The soldiers can go home and claim rightfully in many cases that they got involved with the Iraqis and cultivated friendships and community bonds. They can talk about open schools and repaired utilities. They can talk about all kinds of things, but they cannot go home and say even two years from the start of the occupation, that the enemy has seen defeat once and for all. Many of them must return in short order to continue their service there, with the end years away at best.

It seems that every since a certain man landed on a certain carrier, this administration has been trying to declare victory in a war it has not yet won. I will not say it's time to pull out, or to leave Iraq to its own devices, but it is way past time for this Administration to admit to the American people and to itself that we're in Iraq for the long term.

That sort of admission is the honesty Americans are looking for from their government, and the policy shift they want from the Pentagon. The only thing worse than being stuck in Iraq for the next few years fighting this war, will be listening to the neverending promises of a quick victory for the rest of Bush's term.

Posted by Stephen Daugherty at June 23, 2005 11:06 PM