Monday, December 11, 2006

Iraq Study Group - my reaction

Iraq Study Group

Now that the ISG recommendations have been published, it is time to get real and analyze the whole situation with “Winning” in mind.
The ISG came up with a total of 79 recommendations but the most important one in my mind was not even considered.

The one lesson we need to learn from history, in this case, the Vietnam War experience, is that our enemy is using our media and our own citizens to defeat us. The North Vietnamese General was interviewed years later and he admitted that they could not win the war on the battle field but relied on the war of public opinion to defeat us.

In Iraq today, one of the factors that we have not been more successful is the constant harping by the media and the opposition party that this was a bad war. They highlighted our mistakes and exaggerated the atrocities of Abu Ghraib and Gitmo and distorted the premise of going to war.

Mistakes and abuses will happen in any war. We should not use them to score political points and undermine our foreign policy. We are not playing a game but real lives and national security are at risk.

The one recommendation that I didn’t read is the following – the one that should unify our country behind a just and worthy cause and to “WIN” in Iraq.

Let’s define what “WIN” means in Iraq. A minimum win in Iraq will mean that they have a stable government able to control their own borders and maintain peace and participate in a global dialog as a sovereign nation. If they turn out to be a democracy that would be great. If they choose to be governed by a Theocracy, that is OK too. What is unacceptable is an Iraq, being torn apart with the help of Al Queda and Iran and Syria and becoming a training ground for future terrorists.

What does not help is for example, Frank Rich of the NYT, in his latest editorial, one of many in the past few years, saying “we have already lost Iraq”.
How does he know and what is his agenda in pronouncing this as “fact”?
Is this a self fulfilling prophecy or is this border on treason at a time of war?
Let’s say we are loosing the war in Iraq at the moment. What does Frank Rich suggest we do going forward? Should we apologize and leave and bring Saddam back? Is this a better alternative? What happen over the next few years if we leave? Has Frank Rich thought about the unintended consequences that will surely follow?

I understand the need for analysis and criticism and even “freedom of speech and press” on the part of the media. That is their job.
I often wonder if the reporting of this war would be the same if a Democrat is sitting in the White House instead of GW Bush.

Can you imagine during the height of WWII and our press focused on the atrocities of our soldiers and the tactical mistakes of our generals? Would President Truman make the decision to drop the Atom Bomb on Japan to end the war in the Pacific if NYT has its way? Would we have even won against Hitler and Mussolini if half of the American public and 90% of the American media are against the war?

That is the crossroad we are at. Do we have the national will and unity necessary to win and succeed in Iraq?

The other thing which is not considered is defining our enemy in Iraq. Who are they and what do they want? Where do they get their support? How can we stop them?
Are they watching CNN and reading NYT and quoting our elected officials and repeating it on Al Jazeera- the leading Arab news outlet?
These are all good questions.

If I was an Al Queda leader, I welcome the call by Congresswoman Cynthia McKinney calling for the impeachment of GW Bush. It just gives me more moral ammunition to continue the fight against the “evil” USA”. This is one of many outrageous charges lodged against a sitting president by our own elected officials and elites in Academia.

As difficult as the current war in Iraq is going, I shutter to think what we would be facing if we pull out and let things go their natural way. Our enemy knew very well the lessons of Mogadishu, Somalia. They watched Black Hawk Down and learned. They can defeat us by inflicting enough pain and causing us to loose our will to fight.
That is their only strategy in Iraq, and so far, I agree partly with Frank Rich, they are winning and by default we are loosing. If we continue the national debate and not fully support our mission, we will loose Iraq and probably all future conflicts in that region.
Thanks to the NYT. What a way to go.

3 Comments:

Blogger Minor Ripper said...

Great post, thanks. Don't know if you've seen these two short videos from Iraq yet or not, but both show the US Military engaging in some very dubious actions. I have them up on my site at www.minor-ripper.blogspot.com ..You have to wonder what these soldiers were thinking when videotaping this stuff...

8:25 AM  
Blogger Seven Star Hand said...

Hey Common Sense,

We are witnessing the last throes of so-called representative democracy...

Just how wise is it for billions of souls to to be at the mercy of a proven idiot just because those with the most money and least scruples put him in power? GW Bush and the greedy scoundrels that surround him are stunning evidence of the utter folly and failures of government driven by money, religion, and politics.

It was clear to me that GHW (papa) Bush was crying recently because he's suffering from the stress of realizing that the debacles caused by his son are ultimately traced to the Bush family's aristocratic ambitions. In other words, the old man and his cabal cronies are as much to blame for Iraq and other evils as the clueless son they foisted upon the world stage. That is why family consiglieri James Baker and smoking man Eagleburger were called in to set the stage for little W's demise.

Royalty, aristocracy, and plutocracy always were and always will be bad ideas and we have been forced to suffer through yet more proof of this. Do you think GW's feelings are more important than the wealth and power of the empire? We're now witnessing the praetorian guard fulfilling their most sacred duty; saving the empire from an insane emperor. Unfortunately for them, it's too little too late.

Here is Wisdom...

8:40 AM  
Blogger MSchaut said...

Recently I've noticed the BBC changing its tune, now that they've finally drummed the citizenry and American 'elites' into being convinced American policy is wrong. Now that its too late, and American support for the war has drained, BBC and Europeans are beginning to get frightened of what an American pull-out would really mean, what a refusal of Congress to send more troops would really mean.

I hope the 'chaos merchants' are proud of themselves. They couldn't have made things any more miserable for our government, our troops or for American reputation in the world.

They'll soon be living out the consequences themselves.

7:51 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home