Who is the Enemy?

If you listen to the left, the war in Iraq is lost. Our troops are dying in record numbers. The Iraqis hate us. ‘US Soldiers are the enemy’, ‘Bush is a criminal’, ‘Bush is the enemy.’ Formerly peaceful muslims are now terrorists cutting off the heads of civilians and exploding bombs in mosques because of Bush’s incompetence and intransigence. What war is the left really fighting? And against whom?

The calls for our defeat from the left came early and often: a mantra of defeatism that started with the fringe left with Afghanistan and is now official dogma on Iraq.

Afghanistan is beginning to look like a quagmire rather than a victory, with echoes of the confusion and uncertainty and persistent bloodshedding of Vietnam. Compounding the complications of the U.S. goal of hunting down the Taliban and Al Qaeda while stabilizing a fragile government is the swirl of ethnic tensions in Afghanistan fueled by competing warlords. Foreign Policy in Focus, Jim Lobe, September 2002

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Afghanistan quagmire or strategic deception?

When and where the next military front in the war on terror will open is anyone's guess. But surely open it will - and the apparent Afghanistan quagmire will in the meantime direct attention elsewhere.

For those already war-weary in only the fourth week of hostilities in Afghanistan and those innocently suffering the consequences, prolonged war is no happy thought. The very real possibility of the wider war we foresee is no more appealing. But it bears to keep in mind that the consequences of not fighting it would almost certainly be more dire still. asia times, Oct 30, 2001

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A Military Quagmire Remembered: Afghanistan as Vietnam

Could Afghanistan become another Vietnam? Is the United States facing another stalemate on the other side of the world? Premature the questions may be, three weeks after the fighting began. Unreasonable they are not... R. W. APPLE Jr., New York Times, October 31, 2001

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Keeping Our Fingers Crossed: Is Afghanistan Slipping into a Quagmire?

...Unfortunately, this is the scene in November 2001 as well. Despite futile media reports to the contrary, Afghanistan is on the verge of slipping into a political and socio-economic quagmire. In less than 48 hours, the despotic Taliban regime was forced to flee its northern stronghold of Mazar-e-Sharif, and eventually Kabul, to the rush of the Northern Alliance horde. By most eyewitness accounts law and order have broken down in the north, and Kabul residents, who had gleefully welcomed the Northern Alliance, are starting to show signs of concern that their new warlords will not leave. mediamonitors.net, November 21, 2001

Essential to the political future of democrats is that any war Bush leads must be a quagmire and another Vietnam. To regain power no defeat is too ignoble. No retreat is too swift.

Kennedy calls on US to begin troop pullout

WASHINGTON -- Senator Edward M. Kennedy yesterday called on the Bush administration to begin withdrawing troops from Iraq shortly after national elections there Sunday, saying the presence of US troops is fueling an increasingly violent insurgency and exacerbating the security situation, not improving it. boston.com

Thus there is no role for ever using our troops anywhere in the world in the war on terror. Certainly we've learned our lesson: Don't ever try to remove dictatorships with US troops because if there is resistance they cannot do the job.

The United States has lost the war in Iraq, and that's a good thing. By that I don't mean that the loss of American and Iraqi lives is to be celebrated...

So, as a U.S. citizen, I welcome the U.S. defeat, for a simple reason: It isn't the defeat of the United States -- its people or their ideals -- but of that empire. And it's essential the American empire be defeated and dismantled. counterpunch.org

Just the rantings of far-leftists? Doesn't represent mainstream liberal thought? Sadly these quotes perfectly represent mainstream Democratic thought on the war. As most of the posts on the blue column here on Watchblog can attest. Iraq is lost and that's a good thing if it results in the defeat of Bush and the 'neo-con cabal'.

In a resolution passed unanimously at the group’s recent monthly meeting, the Democrats agreed that the governor should “do everything within his power to immediately bring home all Oregon National Guard troops presently serving in Iraq or Afghanistan or in training for those wars.” Washington County Democrats Official Blog

No, Murtha isn't the first Democrat to call for immediate troop withdrawal by a long shot.

Washington -- Sixteen House Democrats led by Rep. Lynn Woolsey of Petaluma called on President Bush on Wednesday to begin the immediate withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq...

"While it may be logistically difficult to immediately remove every American soldier, we urge you to take immediate action to begin the withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq. This is the only way to truly support our troops,'' said the letter signed by Woolsey and her colleagues.

The House Democrats, all of them longtime critics of Bush's Iraq policies, said the U.S.-led invasion in March 2003 had stirred anti-American sentiments among Iraqis and other Arabs, made Iraqis and foreigners in the country less safe and "intensified the rage of the extremist Muslim terrorists.''

"By removing our troops from the country, we will remove the main focus of the insurgents' rage,'' the letter added. sfgate.com, January 2005

The calls for defeat have never ended. They certainly didn't start with Rep. Murtha.

U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.), one of the earliest and most outspoken critics of the Iraq war, urged the Bush administration on Monday to pull all U.S. forces from Iraq by mid-year. Chicago tribune

Chris Matthews, whose show has steadily declined into a two or three note symphony of defeat and revisionism, echoed Kurt Vonnegut's statements about how the enemy is not evil, but 'just has a different perspective'. I'm not sure who Chris thinks the enemy is, but I don't consider Zarqawi to be just another alternate viewpoint, I consider him to be an agent of evil.

In a speech to political science students at the University of Toronto yesterday, the host of the CNBC current affairs show Hardball had plenty of harsh words for U.S. President George W. Bush, as well as the political climate that has characterized his country for the past few years.

"The period between 9/11 and Iraq was not a good time for America. There wasn't a robust discussion of what we were doing," Matthews said.

"If we stop trying to figure out the other side, we've given up. The person on the other side is not evil -- they just have a different perspective."

He said Bush squandered an opportunity to unite the world against terrorism and instead made decisions that have built up worldwide animosity against his administration. torontosun.canoe.ca

If you listen to the left, the war is already lost. It was lost before it even began. The reason some can see only evil in the Bush Administration, but not in the terrorists who cut the heads off their victims, is because there is a long history of just this kind of thinking on the left.

During the invasion of Iraq the left argued that everything was going wrong and that it was already a quagmire. Every battle looked bad for the US and every mistake (or perceived mistake) was focused on to the exclusion of all else. This is the pattern that leads the left to conclude that Iraq is Vietnam. They can accept nothing else if they are to keep their world view intact.

Politically, the one thing that Democrats simply do not want to happen is for this war to have a victorious ending-- not for America but for Bush. It is far better for the left if Iraq is Vietnam. If it is a quagmire. If it brings Republicans out of power and the left back in, then all will be well again in the world.

Some Grim Milestones

What is most disengenous about liberal arguments for quitting in Iraq is that 2,000 deaths are too much to suffer in a war to liberate 50 million people, to create a democratic society, and to replace a repressive dictatorship with democracy.

Is it really the number of soldiers who have died? Are they in fact dying for nothing? Did they die for a lie?

What about dying for no reason at all right here in the states?
38,253 Americans died in 2004 alone in fatal automobile accidents- and,

38,477 died in 2003...
38,491 died in 2002...
37,862 died in 2001...
37,526 died in 2000...
37,140 died in 1999...
37,107 died in 1998...
37,324 died in 1997...
37,494 died in 1996...
37,241 died in 1995...
36,254 died in 1994...

Still, I don't hear any one calling it a quagmire of auto violence. Yet, these are grim milestones far surpassing the fallen in Iraq. But then Bush didn't invent the automobile so there's no reason for democrats to bring it up.

Is it worth it to bring democracy to Iraq? Is it worth it to remove a dangerous dictator who without a doubt would develop WMD and use them?

The left's exit strategy is based upon the (false) premise that Bush lied, therefore the war has no basis, and therefore Iraq should be abandoned to Zarqawi and the Baathist 'party of the return'. A huge mistake. But what is the Bush exit strategy? In his own words it is, "When the Iraqi's stand up, we stand down." Not only is this reasonable, it is the only logical option.

The insurgency has no future in Iraq unless we give it one. Unless we give up and walk away giving them the field of battle to slaughter and kill as many people as it takes to put the country back under either a Baathist or Islamofascist regime.

Supporting the troops means supporting the mission. Which means not declaring defeat in the midst of the battle and demanding we surrender immediately. Supporting the troops means not adopting the war propaganda of the enemy: Iraq: U.S. will be defeated

Posted by Eric Simonson at November 23, 2005 2:50 AM