Third Party & Independents Archives

April 07, 2004

Two Wrongs Will Not Make A Right

Operation Vigilant Resolve this week would be better named Operation Vigilant Devolve. It was wrong for the U.S. to enter war with Iraq without the U.N.’s backing and cooperation. That is clear to all except the religiously loyal Bushites. The growing civil and anti-U.S. occupation war developing in Iraq threatens the handover of government to Iraqi’s this summer, because it is becoming apparent what many scholars predicted before invasion, that the differing sects in Iraq will not cooperate in a unified government. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld said today about the handover threat, “We will make it work.”

Whether Donald Rumsfeld understands what he and our troops are really facing is in grave doubt due to such words as he spoke today. The fact aside that in 1991 Donald Rumsfeld said it will be difficult to imagine how Iraq could be kept whole if Hussein were deposed; before one can will a thing to happen, one must know that it is possible to make it happen. When the will and intent to win was adamant in the 60's but, the plausibility of any winning scenario was simply not believable, the United States was caught in a trap of pouring ever more American blood into Vietnamese soil with no end in sight. The reason there was no end to the stream of 52 thousand American body bags and 100's of thousands of injuries, was because the will to win was not matched by a strategy or plan that could win. And politicians refused to face the reality that they had erred in their calculations, erred in their planning, and hopelessly underestimated their opponent.

There is still a winning scenario - Turn the war in Iraq over to the U.N. by whatever means necessary. Then the U.S. can claim credit for deposing a ruthless demonic dictator, while laying the burden of decades of nation building and social and cultural rehabilitation which will be necessary in Iraq to allow self governance to become successful. But, like John F. Kennedy, Lyndon Baines Johnson, and Richard Nixon, the unwillingness of American leaders to admit loss or failure prior to the brink of domestic civil war in the U.S. is every bit as evident in President Bush and Donald Rumsfeld as in their predecessors. But there is no winning scenario if the U.S. pins its hopes of turning security in Iraq over to a civil democratic government representing the Kurds, Shiites, and Sunnis. It will take at least a generation or two to bring that about, and our losses will only increase over those decades, threatening domestic peace and tranquility here at home.

It was wrong to invade Iraq without U.N. sanction - meaning, unless and until, the U.N. backed the invasion, the U.S. had no winning strategy, exit strategy, or any other kind of realistic appraisal or strategy backing its targeting of Iraq. Whatever we gained by having a presence in the Middle East, as the last year of history in Iraq demonstrates, will be outweighed by the countless billions of tax dollars, hundreds and even thousands of American troop deaths before it is over, 10's of thousands of injuries, losses of limb, and grief born destruction of families here in America. It was a wrong decision to invade Iraq without the U.N. and pursuing redemption by pursuing a war that has no end will not make the first wrong right, it will just continue to put make American troops in the wrong place, at the wrong time, in what otherwise should be pursuit of terrorists threatening the U.S. instead of a civil war and nation building in Iraq that will take a generation at least.

Posted by David R. Remer at April 7, 2004 05:55 PM
Comments
Comment #11534

David- How can you continue to think that giving this situation over to the U.N. is any kind of solution? The U.N. has proven itself to be completely not up to this task- and it will STILL require lots of american soldiers (probably a majority of all troops would be U.S. troops) to keep order- where exactly do you think these troops will come from?

So what we will have is OUR soldiers being told what to do by an organization that has France (of the oil deals with Saddam and no sence of responsibility to the rest of the world) and China (brutal dictatorship- lets give them the responsibility of creating democracy in Iraq!!) with full veto power over any actions. maybe the Human Rigthts Commission of the U.N. that is headed by Lybia can be put in charge of insuring human rights are upheld in Iraq! That will work out well.

“Giving the situation to the U.N.” has become a beloved call for opponents of the war, but there is no realistic or acceptable manner in which this would work (as shown above). The U.N. has no interest or ability to take care of a situation like this. The only two real options are (1) we have to stay there and try to do our best to create a stable democracy- (note, Mr. Bush, that takes a LOT longer than June 30th); (2) leave right now and let the Iraqis kill each other off until the next brutal dicator emerges. I dont think (2) is a position any responsible person would put forth.

I love your idealism about what the U.N. could be-I used to share it once. But after a decade of seeing the U.N. become a sewing circle for nations that couldnt care less about human rigths, I dont trust them one bit I think it is terrible that there is no organization like the IDEAL of the U.N., but as long as it does not exist, we cannot pretend like it does.

Posted by: Misha Tseytlin at April 7, 2004 06:21 PM
Comment #11538

I have an Idea that has not been discussed previously. How about we give the damn country back to Saddam Hussain and get out now. And before everybody starts attacking me from the left and right think about this. He seems to be the only one that really knows how to rule the place and keep order I say that because its obvious we don’t have a clue. And before I start hearing remarks like ” But he was a brutal dictator that killed his own people ” think about this how many innocent Iraqies have we killed since last weekend. And ask yourself who is more brutal.

Posted by: Steve C. at April 7, 2004 07:31 PM
Comment #11539

Wow

Posted by: Misha Tseytlin at April 7, 2004 07:33 PM
Comment #11540

Misha, how can you think there will be any solution that outweighs American costs if we don’t turn it over to the Iraqi’s and U.N.?

Look, we liberated the Iraqis. Now let them have their own Revolutionary and Civil War like we did in order to create their more perfect union. We turn it over to the U.N. and let the U.N. do their best. Ultimately, the responsibility for whether Iraq remains a united country, becomes a democracy, or falls into civil war as it is doing now, is ENTIRELY up to the Iraqi’s. Let them choose if they want U.N. assistance or not.

We screwed up going in. Let us not compound the cost and error by trying ‘Viet Nam War style’ to “WILL” a solution that can only be solved by a people who refuse our control and direction.

We should be helping countries who won’t cut our hand off for offering assistance. I repeat, the only patriotic duty to our troops now is to reduce their numbers and exposure to the furthest extent possible. To do otherwise is to spend American lives the way a thief spends stolen money.

It is so damned easy for politicians to spend lives not their own or from their family. If they are spent, they should be spent in defense; not for grandiose and irrational hopes for reelection or historical prominence or based on faulty plans, absent plans, faulty intelligence, absent intelligence, or political protection.

If Bush does not turn Iraq over to the U.N., I honestly believe the only rationale is to defend his presidency, not to defend our country or its people.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 7, 2004 07:37 PM
Comment #11541

Why exactly would there be a civil war if the US retreated? Because Iraq is not a viable state. Drawn up by imperial powers, it is doomed to fail. The only reason it was held together is because of the ruthless rule of a dictator propped up by Western (and Soviet) powers. Let it go now. It will happen anyway. A democratic Iraq is a fata morgana.

Posted by: Jake at April 7, 2004 07:50 PM
Comment #11544

David- I ask you again, if we hand it over to the UN, who exactly will be the troops who keep order? I submit that the majority would be american troops, but under UN control. If we say “here, UN, please take it, you will get no troops from us”, thats basically like saying “here you go Iraqis, fight it out to the death”. I know other people supported this war cause of WMDs or terrorism, but my personal reason for supporting it was a humanitarian mission. as a result, leaving Iraq to a civil war right now would be counteractive to why I was for this war. Obviously, if you opposed the war or supported it for other reasons, your opinion may differ.

Posted by: Misha Tseytlin at April 7, 2004 07:54 PM
Comment #11546

Misha, whomever the U.N. can muster for the job. The difference between what is lacking from the U.N. and the goal of a united nation under a democracy will have to made up by the Iraqi’s themselves.

You probably don’t like that answer, but, it is realistic, practical, and is wise from the lessons of history of nations that have gone before and our own. The U.S. presence, regardless of its intent, will only add to the instability and hostilites and deunification of Iraq. Iraq’s only hope is with the U.N. and mustering their own resources in concert with the U.N. Will we have a contingent in the U.N. led forces, the answer should be a conditional yes. Yes as long as their is hope that our losses will result in some superordinate good for all. No, if it becomes obvious that no amount of peace-keeping from outside is going to resolve the impending civil war which Rumsfeld predicted would be inevitable back in 1991.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 7, 2004 08:04 PM
Comment #11547

David:

Put the UN in control? Hmmmmm, it is the UN that got us here. How many more resolutions do you expect them to pass without enforcement??

Let’s look at Africa. Hmmmm we are celebrating the 10 year anniversery of nearly 1,000,000 deaths because the UN cut and ran.

You are pointing us down the road to disaster.

Craig

Posted by: Craig Holmes at April 7, 2004 08:32 PM
Comment #11548

I’m not exactly sure what anyone means by handing over Iraq to the U.N.

Iraq belongs to Iraq. Always has and always will, as long as there is an Iraq.

Involvement of the U.N. in an exit strategy, as an asist to a governing body would make some sense and dissipate the charge that this is simply a U.S. occupation.

I agree that U.N. peacekeepers do not have a particularly good record in this kind of volatile situation.

At this point we have no choice but to possibly increase troop strength and attempt to quell the rising tide of violence. But we should expidite involving the Iraqis in their own self rule and defense…and hopefully in a year or two our only involvement will be economic and arms sales.

If we do not make it clear to the moderate Iraqis that we intend to truly allow self government and will leave soon, this will devolve into the same quagmire that vietnam did.

The Iraqis may well choose an Islamic form of Government. Most countries in the region are.

Unfortunaley, the Bush administration seems unwilling to admit it’s errors and may well try to turn this debacle around by massive force, just as the Johnson administration did. To quote Pat Buchanan:

“That is why we are probably not leaving for a long, long time. For should we go and should Baghdad fall, as Saigon fell, Bush, Cheney and Rumsfeld enter the history books beside Johnson, McNamara and Rusk”

(I wish someone would tell me how to indent a paragrah like some of you do.lol)

The Republican Party needs to recognize what the gambler from Texas has led them into. Hopefully in the next few months they will.

If we can begin to accelerate the handover to Iraq and get the Iraqis themselves to ask for us to leave we may have an exit strategy that will work. It will be a defeat for the Neocons and the Republicans, but not for America then.

Posted by: Greg at April 7, 2004 08:39 PM
Comment #11550

If it makes you guys feel any better, I think Bush is going to go ahead and do exactly what you want- he is planning to hand over control by july. I think thats a big big mistake, however.

Posted by: Misha Tseytlin at April 7, 2004 08:48 PM
Comment #11553

Greg,

Surround the quoted text with blockquote tags, like this:
‹blockquote›(I wish someone would tell me how to indent a paragrah like some of you do.lol)‹/blockquote›

That gets rendered as

(I wish someone would tell me how to indent a paragrah like some of you do.lol)
Posted by: LawnBoy at April 7, 2004 09:55 PM
Comment #11554

Misha, handing over the control of civil government to the Iraqi’s in July is something that Bush intends to do whether it has a viable government or puppetheads. The big question is will the U.S. remain as the primary security force in Iraq.

There is breaking news on this front today in the Christian Science Monitor:

But reports are coming in from around the country that Iraqi security forces are refusing to confront the new challenges head on. Analysts now say the best military solution to the rising tide of Sunni and Shiite attacks - and unexpected alliances - is a major increase in US forces.

As Rumsfeld knew in 1991, counting on the Iraqi’s to fight for a unified new Iraqi regime was a pipedream. Chris Matthews discussed this very point in an interview on MSNBC this afternoon, referring to archived material from Rumsfeld after our first incursion into Iraq when he was defending Papa Bush’s decision to not take Hussein out of power.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 7, 2004 10:05 PM
Comment #11556

David—

I agree with you that the War was a very bad idea perpetrated by a bunch of arrogant, ignorant men with visions of American Imperialism dancing in front of their eyes like a bloated 401(K). and the current plan to get out at the end of June is intensely foolhardy and shows a gross lack of vision and understanding from the Bush Administration (is anyone really surprised?).

Before we can turn this quagmire over to the U.N. however, we have to commit more troops and crush the resistance decisively, even if that means razing a few cities to do it. And we have to close the boarders, which again will take more manpower; certainly more then one Infantry Division and some 20,000 Marines.

Only after the country is secure will the U.N, agree to step in, and who can blame them? As for the rest of the world, this weeks events are already slackening the resolve of some of our closest allies in this fight, Australia among them. Hoping for a fresh infusion of friendly foreign troops is a pipe dream; that ship has sailed; we and the Brits are in this alone, and lets face it the Brits are happy to stay is Basra where the mood is tranquil—for now.

No this is going to take a real commitment from the U.S.; a lot more troops; at least three full Army Divisions, before this is over and done with. And let’s not even talk about money. In the end, is the draft out of the question?

Posted by: V. Edward Martin at April 7, 2004 10:30 PM
Comment #11558

Mr. Martin, with respect, what you propose is exactly what LBJ proposed. It amazes me that it is not obvious to all who lived through the Viet Nam period, that we are repeating the very same mistakes of the past. There is NO WAY to extinguish resistance which is guerilla in nature, well funded, and with an unending recruiting capability.

We fuel the jihadist movement by remaining as the invader and dominator over Islamist people. We help them recruit, we help them raise funds, we help them draw the conflict out endlessly by giving them a focal point for hatred, an enemy that stands still in one place like a target, and enough propaganda material by virtue of collateral damage to recruit replacements as fast, if not faster, than we can kill them.

The U.N. defines jihadist’s enemy as the rest of the world, and no guerilla war can hope to win, and therefore recruit new soldiers, when the enemy is 75 to 85% of the rest of the world. It is fruitless and ultimately doomed endeavor. When the enemy however is a single country leading the offense, military tactics dicate that if you can take out the head of the enemy, the followers will go home. In other words, if they can recreate Viet Nam and drag America into and endless review of body bags over a decade or more, the head of the offense will weary from the futile effort and quit, and the other nations supporting the U.S. will go home as well.

Doesn’t anyone realize how our Viet Nam experience holds out hope and glory for the insurgents in Iraq and for radical jihadists everywhere? The tactics, the strategies, the use of media exploiting U.S. caused collateral damage, are all straight out of the Viet Nam history books. They are baiting a righteous nation into a warplan and game plan that has proven historically to be our Achille’s heel. We should not be fighting this war on their terms, by their play book, and by repeating mistakes known by any literate person of world history.

How many body bags will you tolerate before YOU say enough is enough. How much sacrifice of our own domestic security and domestic economic needs are we willing to pay before we say, we cannot afford this. Why in God’s name must we even go there in total disregard and ignorance of lessons dearly taught only 4 decades ago. Dearly taught, dearly learned, but, how easily forgotten.

I set my limit at 500. We have passed that point, and I say, we have spent enough trying to build an Iraqi nation on our own. What is your limit, Mr. Martin? Do you wish to spend your limit only to regret later that you set it so high? LBJ had that regret, and it was so deeply felt that he gave up all political ambition as penitence for his sin of having set the limit of losses to our nation far too damned high.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 7, 2004 11:02 PM
Comment #11560

Craig, that is preposterous. The U.N. did not decide that America should invade Iraq. President Bush and his advisors decided that before Bush even took office. The U.S. has no one to blame for the costs of this war but, the deceivers who trumped up WMD and imminent threat to our allies and eventual threat to our homeland as premise for convincing many in Congress and most of Americans there was a need. The truth is out. The reasons for incurring the costs today did not in fact, exist.

Whose fault is that? Our government, pure and simple. A government led by Bush and a cadre of hawks who couldn’t wait to start spending American lives and a hundred billion dollars to profit energy and defense industry buddies. Government planners who couldn’t wait to implement plans for forcing billions of people to change their regimes, their cultures, their governments, their economies all in our image. Damn near sounds like Genesis and God creating man, doesn’t it? Not as far fetched as it sounds if one is willing to weigh the facts fairly and let the scales tilt whichever way they will.

Posted by: David R Remer at April 7, 2004 11:31 PM
Comment #11563

David, the enemy is listening and learning well from from the left.

Which of the following quotes is Ted Kennedy and which is a Radical Shiite Cleric leading an insugency against US troops?

…said yesterday President George W. Bush had misled America into an unnecessary war while “neglecting the real war on terrorism” and making “America more hated in the world”.

“He’s the problem, not the solution. Iraq is George Bush’s Vietnam…
-News AU

—————-

“I call upon the American people to stand beside their brethren, the Iraqi people, who are suffering an injustice by your rulers and the occupying army, to help them in the transfer of power to honest Iraqis,” **** said in a statement issued by his office…

“Otherwise, Iraq will be another Vietnam for America and the occupiers.” -The Australian

When you talk about how wrong this war was, how misguided, wrongheaded, illegal, backward, miscalculated, quagmire, vietnam, etc., etc., ad infinitum… you are fueling the hopes, dreams, and aspirations of those who want nothing more than to kill as many of our troops as possible to fulfill the promising scenario you dangle before them.

They believe, rightly, that if they can just keep the killing up, we will eventually leave with our tail between our legs.

They believe this because it’s exactly the scenario democrats have so colorfully and repetitively painted for them.

In WWII there was a poster that read, “Loose lips, sink ships.” Perhaps if democrats really cared about our troops they would encourage everyone to fully support carrying the mission through to the end so that it can end sooner as a victory rather than later as a defeat.

The UN simply does not have the tools to do the job.

Posted by: Eric Simonson at April 7, 2004 11:51 PM
Comment #11572

Thanks Lawnboy.

Eric,

I wonder if you think the terrorist can read blogs? Lets see you want to quell all analysis and honesty about the actions of the U.S. Government?

If that is your proposal the terrorists have already won.

The strength of this nation IS it’s allowance of dissenting views. Dishonest and poorly made plans will not stand the light of day in this country. The ability of this country to recognize it’s mistakes as in Vietnam is it’s great strength. I just hope it doesn’t take 13 or 14 years and 50,000 American body bags this time.

I just read that someone is probing about for an international force to take on the security in Iraq. Supposedly they are talking to countries such as France, India and Pakistan. A new alliance …not Nato. Maybe someone is finally waking up.

Posted by: Greg at April 8, 2004 12:31 AM
Comment #11574

Thank you David for an excellent debate and an excellent formation of the issues that need to be resolved.

Eric
Denial of the real resistance focused by the anger of Iraqi people against our arrogant war against their soverign nation is still lacking in its link to reality. Your presumption that we are giving aid and comfort to the enemy by our dislike of Bush’s lies and his compatriots lack of good sense may even be possible although I doubt it matters to them. If so why is that presumption true? It is clearly true because our war in Iraq had no justification based on the points made by its proponents here. Particularly it had no sound basis regarding an imminent threat from Weapons of Mass Destruction owned by their leader, however evil he might have been.

Any enemy of ours that has found the premise of our war against them to be based on lies needs no aid and comfort from those of us who recognize the lies told by our own government. They have the aid and comfort given by the rest of the world who know this Administration to be without honor or truth.

Your tail Eric is not at risk here, and any retreat with our tail between our legs is less due to my hatred of our liars in our government and more due to your support for them than you can evidentially imagine.

The end of the “mission’ you apparently forsee is a democratic government in Iraq with the rest of the Middle East falling in line behind them. I have no proof from thirty years of reading about conflicts there that such an outcome is even possible much less likely.

My mission in the Cold War was to die slowly from nuclear poisoning in order to kill aircraft trying to bomb us in the second and third waves of attackers. I think our strategic thinkers then were better because thankfully I never needed to execute that mission. Regardless I would gladly die if our way of life could be generalized around the world by such a small death. So would millions of our patriotic citizens both Democratic and Republican. What is true is that our best efforts to establish democracy in nations by force of arms have largely failed in environments far more receptive than Iraq.

The biggest lie in your response to David is that the Democrats anger at this war is the basis for the Iraqi people’s anger against us. They need no guides here to be angry at our lack of truth and our failure to respect their right to determine their own government and fate. If the Democrats are the cause of our failures there while our leadership is totally Republican today how can that happen? Why is our Senate and House unable to summon up so much as censure of our President who lied to them in order to gain their support for this war?

Your compatriots lie more than in any other way by effacing our President’s guilt for creating a war without an essential justification or an exit strategy that is better than staying. Pretend he is a great leader until the election is over. Then you will all attack our new President with the fury you used while Clinton tried to stop the growth of terrorism. Meanwhile you were concerned about the flow of his jism and his lies about sex. My Heroes!
Henri

Posted by: Henri Reynard at April 8, 2004 12:51 AM
Comment #11575

Now why is it that when Islamic radicals attack Israeli civilians in their own country and the government vows revenge, the U.S. urges them to use restraint, but when U.S. troops and hired security forces face a similar fate in Iraq, the U.S. does the exact same thing?

Posted by: blipsman at April 8, 2004 01:05 AM
Comment #11585

Oh here we go with the terrorist nation of Israeli. Why are the Israelis killing innocent people everyday. check out www.witnessreport.com
They have a very good article about Israel and Iraq.

Posted by: Hank at April 8, 2004 03:02 AM
Comment #11587
What is true is that our best efforts to establish democracy in nations by force of arms have largely failed in environments far more receptive than Iraq.

Besides Germany and Japan, I think we failed in North Korea and Vietnam. In both instances they were client states of communist countries. North Korea is more of a threat today, but look at what we kept South Korea from becoming.

The biggest lie in your response to David is that the Democrats anger at this war is the basis for the Iraqi people’s anger against us.

I’m not saying it is the basis of the insurgents anger. And I do not believe it is all Iraqi’s angry at us, do you?

I’m saying it is aiding their propaganda and giving them phychological support. Doesn’t that make any sense to you guys?

We can’t leave Iraq now, most agree on that. The UN can’t do the job. It would change nothing to have the UN there. Beside which they don’t want to come in until everything is safe so they can take the credit for bringing the peace.

Posted by: Eric Simonson at April 8, 2004 03:46 AM
Comment #11590

David—

I hear and understand what you are saying, but how can we afford—morally, or militarily—to leave now? The result for Iraq and that region of the world would be disastrous. Civil War would most certainly result; could we should we turn our back on a situation of our making? Would the Arabs with the help of the Turks set out to slather the Kurds? What deeper implications would an Iraqi civil war have for the rest of the region? What part would Iran seek to play? And would Iraq become the new haven for terrorist the world over, a bastion of radical Islamic thought, an incubator of violence against the West? These are all legitimate concerns.

And the body count is already to high Mr. Remer, and I do not want it to get any higher. But with our allies in-country—with the lone exception of Britain—already set to run, what force could the U.N. call upon to act as peacekeepers, if there is no peace to keep?

I hope the American people see now what come from electing a man President who is not an intellectual, who is not learned, who is not wise and reflective, and who is not a critical thinker.

There is no easy way out of this quagmire we now find ourselves in; there are no easy answers, only tough choices to make. Do we cut and run, or stay the course; do we abandon the Iraqi people, or do what is necessary to secure a lasting peace?

Posted by: V. Edward Martin at April 8, 2004 05:38 AM
Comment #11595

Eric, the enemy? Which enemy? The Sunnis and Shiite insurgents? Their issue is power and they will have their civil war regardless of what we do or say. The al-Queda? Their leaders need only, and have already, read world history books in any language and from any countries publishers and already know what I am saying. What I am saying has been in print, taught to students throughout the world in almost every world history course, including Islamist schools. I am saying nothing new here, nor revealing anything they haven’t already learned.

But of course, those who choose to stay in Iraq as the controlling and dominating invader are so Patriotic in their desire to kill more American troops, and focus middle eastern internal hostilities and problems outward at the U.S., us, and our children. Some call that patriotic - but patriotism is rarely rational or knowledgeable or experienced. It requires only an emotional passion to believe. If patriotism won wars, we would not have lost the Korean police action or the Viet Nam police action. Patriotism will not win this conflict in Iraq either, it will only cost everyone needlessly for a goal and mission that cannot be reached or succeed without totally irrational and unimagineable costs which will be regretted for having been paid when all is said and done 20 or 30 years from now.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 8, 2004 09:19 AM
Comment #11598

Mr. Martin, I understand and empathize with your point of view. Where I disagree is in the assumption that our staying will ultimately make any difference. We spilled enormous amounts of blood in Korea, another civil war between North and South, and we still have troops there today, 50 years later. Do you want peace in Iraq that requires American troops being jihadist targets for 50 years? We engage in another civil war in Viet Nam. Did we save more lives than we spent? No, we spent more than we saved as did Ho Chi Minh. Ho Chi Minh and the N. Koreans had on moral high plateau we did not, it was THEIR land and nation they were fighting for. In the end, while Ho Chi Minh and the N. Koreans may not have been right, they were justified in fighting for their own land and self determination as we did against the British. No one in the U.S. can or will say our Revolutionary War was immoral or wrong. Neither will anyone in N. Viet Nam, or N. Korea who lived and fought in the 50’s, say they were immoral or wrong for fighting the Americans.

To fight invasion and determination by a foreign power is NEVER wrong or immoral. What is wrong and immoral, is to invade another nation and fail to win, fail to improve the lives of the conquered, and fail to have created more good that loss. That is immoral and wrong. Iraq is in the throes of Civil War of OUR OWN MAKING. There would have been no civil war in Iraq today had we not invaded. So not only has President Bush taken the immoral and wrong step in creating a civil war where none would have been otherwise, he has undertaken an invasion of another country without a plan, strategy or means of winning which the rest of the world will honor. Thus, staying is just another wrong that has not a hope of making the first wrong right.

There is no doubt in my mind, that if this President, or another, decided to bargain with the U.N. to take over the nation building and peacekeeping role in Iraq, that such a deal could be brokered. All it takes is the will to do so and the willingness to contribute to the U.N.’s direction and lead in that role.

All it takes is the will to do it. This President has no will to do any such thing. To broker this deal, would be tantamount to admitting that Bush erred in the decision to invade and failed to have the strategy and resources necessary to fulfill the mission which will take decades.

Rather than admit error and risk reelection, he chooses to pour ever more American blood into Iraqi soil, ever more American tax dollars into the coffers of energy and defense corporation stock holders and administrators pockets, all for political protection. I call that Immoral and Wrong as can be. If only LBJ were here to confer with Bush, Bush might realize the price of refusing to admit error will inevitably be far, far too high to pay when all is fought, spent, and done.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 8, 2004 09:55 AM
Comment #11625

i guess i missed this in history class, but when and why did the u.s. decided to go “fix” everyone else?

Posted by: lesley at April 8, 2004 04:02 PM
Comment #11642

lesley, since the close of WWII, the U.S. has a long history of selectively engaging in the affairs of other peoples and states, from covert operations to assasinate heads of state, to humanitarian aid for populations which became media and focus and tugged at American heart strings.

It has never been possible, it is not now possible, and difficult to imagine that it ever will be possible for the U.S. to solve mankind’s problems throughout the world. It is a selective prioritization process which determines who we help or devastate, sometimes for genuinely positive reasons, far more often for political reasons having to do with popularity polls and electability.

Regardless of the negative aspects of our foreign policy history, the U.S. has been the most magnanimous, generous, and supportive nation toward other nation’s peoples than any other other. There is believed by many, a moral imperative for the wealthiest nation in the world to use its wealth for diplomatic purposes abroad as a means of maintaining harmony and peace with the rest of the world to the extent possible.

That moral imperative has stood our nation in good stead for over 50 years, and it is unlikely that any president, including this one, would be so short sided politically as to try to end this tradition of American foreign policy.

Posted by: David R. Remer at April 8, 2004 06:07 PM