Michael Ledeen on the Real War

This is absolutely right:

. . .Once you see that Iraq and Afghanistan are battlefields in a larger war, you must figure out how to win that war, and not the one that was drawn up on the Power Points before the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom, based on the false assumption that we would fight a series of limited wars, one country at a time.

At a minimum, the real war is a regional war, and most likely a world war. That becomes obvious as soon as you see that Iran, sometimes in tandem with Syria and with covert help from Saudi Arabia, is waging war on us in Iraq and Afghanistan, and sponsoring terrorist assaults against us and our allies from Lebanon to Iraq, Afghanistan and Palestine, with their preferred instrument, Hezbollah, as the organizing army. But our national debate, with the exception of rare men like Senator Santorum, is limited to Iraq and Afghanistan alone, and thus our war plan is wrongly limited to Iraq and Afghanistan alone. . .

[. . .]

The debate over the appropriate number of American troops in Iraq is a typical example of how our failure of strategic vision distorts our ability to win the war. So long as the terror masters’ killers can freely cross the borders from Syria, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, and Iran in order to deliver money, weapons, expertise, and manpower, it is hard to imagine that any conceivable number of American soldiers could defeat them.

Lacking a regional strategy, our military is essentially fighting a holding action in Iraq and Afghanistan, and there is clearly a premium on avoiding casualties. Some critics have noticed that we have created large bases, complete with astonishing creature comforts including air conditioned tents and Starbucks cafes. The soldiers on those bases are rarely in the field; they wait until they get good intelligence about enemy movements, and then go after them. But that is not the proper way to fight this sort of war, and probably not even the best way to hold down casualties.

Worth reading in full.

(via SWLiP)

1 thought on “Michael Ledeen on the Real War”

  1. One would think that warmongers on the right who brought us into Iraq would be slightly chastened about calling for war with Iran. But Medeeen is unfazed and calls for “outside intervention” to help topple the terror master Iranian regime. Terror masters or not, Iran is one of the few democracies in the region, albeit an illiberal one that opposes our interests. US bombing/invading will be welcomed by the Iranian people with even fewer bouquets of flowers than we saw in Iraq… so what is Medeen thinking of when he says “outside intervention”? And when will these neoconservatives stop trying to drag us into unwinnable wars to remake the Middle East?

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