Saturday, January 13, 2007

It Is Time To Go Home

Saddam is dead. The regime has been changed. The weapons of mass destruction that weren't there in the first place still do not threaten us. Our troops should be redeploying not deploying. If May 2003 was the end of "major combat operations" is January 2007 the begining of more? Or is this the president grasping at so many straws? And for what? His own legacy? So he can say years from now that it was not he who lost in Iraq? That he did not precipitate a withdrawal? That he held steadfast while the majority of those in uniform indeed the majority of the citizens of the country he claims to be protecting here at home or helping there in Iraq told him otherwise?

The president finally admitted to himself and the nation that this is not an open ended commitment. Everyone knows we are leaving eventually. And we should. Sooner rather than later. As Richard Clark has pointed out on more than one occasion; there will be chaos in the streets when we pull out. And this is true whether we pull out tomorrow or a year from tomorrow or two years from tomorrow. This civil war in Iraq will end eventually and someone will win, but it's not going to be the US. We should leave now.

Supporters of the war are keen to ask me and people like me "what plan do you have for Iraq if you don't like the president's?" This brings to mind a scene of two people tethered together contemplating jumping over a cliff. One says to the other we should go over and enjoy the view. The other having no faith in the parachute cautions against. On the way down, after the parachute fails to open, the first asking the second well what do YOU want to do!

Of course the "plan" that so many on the other side says doesn't exist is to leave. That is the plan. Get out and get out now. Thanks to us Iraq is FUBAR. More troops are not going to fix it. It is broken and we can't fix it. The truth is it was broken before we invaded. Getting rid of Saddam and replacing him with chaos and sectarian violence did nothing to fix anything it just broke it even more. So instead of smashing the bits even further, let's just stop - and reassess.
And recuperate. And try to heal our own country.


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