Wretchard is not a man who, as did the panel on Charlie Rose last week, thinks America did the honorable thing in Vietnam and Cambodia as they described our current policies as insufficiently welcoming of Iraqi refugees. They may well be right that accepting that flow is the “right” thing, but their assurance that the humanitarian position first accepts defeat, pulls out, then accepts those who manage, somehow, to reach our shores hardly seems a humanitarian solution. Wretchard observes that patience is a practical virtue: the decade of overflights demonstrate that perseverance can work. Belmont Club gives us a context for those ads that thank us. Strangely, allusions to Germany and Japan and even South Korea show up in comments more often than do the Kurds. But they remind us why and how order does reign in parts of Irag, though it did not come easily nor quickly. Peace takes longer than war.
9 thoughts on “A Reminder from Wretchard”
The Kurds in Iraq (not Turkey or Iran) may have benefited from our invasion, but at what cost? The rest of the country is in a bloody civil war. Many of us predicted this would happen and opposed the invasion. “Accepting defeat” and “pulling out” is going to happen, sooner or later, and I blame the warmongers who sent us there for the consequences.
“The rest of the country is in a bloody civil war.”
Outraged: save the emotion, can the DNC talking points, and try to think things through instead.
The civil war in Iraq was ongoing before the US invaded. Then it was one sided, as the Sunnis terrorized the Shia. Now it is more even, and, with the US suppressing both sides, less bloody. Combat has been limited to a few provinces and is far from universal. US casualties are minimal (less than historic accidental death rates) as both sides are mostly concerned with each other.
Before the US pulls out of Iraq, it should pull out of Korea, Germany and Japan, where it has stationed large contingents for two generations.
Further, we need to understand that pulling out of Iraq will not bring US peace. It will only energize and embolden our enemies, who attacked US here in the homeland before the Iraq war, and who will do so again if given the chance, and possession of Iraq and its resources will give them many chances.
Finally, we must remember that patience is a virtue. Nail Ferguson has said that the US is the first great power that suffers from ADD. It takes years, to stabilize a situation like Iraq. Just as a surgeon may not leave the OR until the patient is ready for the recovery room, the US should not leave Iraq at this point. Iraq is still on its first elected government. How many years of elections and coups d’etat did we go through in Korea before it was stable enough to have one elected government follow another? (Hint, at least 35.)
Last night we celebrated the Passover Seder. In accordance with the commandments, we read the story of the Exodus of the enslaved Jews from Egypt. They were led by the greatest and most humble of prophets, Moses, and by the Eternal God, Creator of the Universe, in the form of a pillar of fire. Even with the direction of leadership that we all can agree was better than George Bush and Don Rumsfield, it still took 40 years to turn an oppressed people into citizens of a free state, and there was plenty of rebellion and backsliding along the way. At the end of the story, God cashiers Moses because of his mistakes.
My point is that even with the best leadership possible, turning slaves into citizens will be difficult and time consuming.
“Before the US pulls out of Iraq, it should pull out of Korea, Germany and Japan, where it has stationed large contingents for two generations.”
Outraged, Robert Schwartz’s comment above needs to be emphasized. The above occupations contributed to world peace for half a century or more.
Some wars should be fought. If, as my dictionary does, it is defined as avocating war, well, I guess, fair enough; and honorable enough, since some wars should be fought. But, if you mean “advocating all wars all the time” then I wish you’d give some other examples (other than Iraq) – or are you just libeling people with a broad speculative label?
Sorry, I’m referring to the the use of “warmonger” in the last part of above comment and in Outraged’s comment.
One can argue whether our intervention in Iraq has been helpful or not, to Iraq or to us. But all this depends on what our objectives in the first place, in a war that is conceivably a very long war – of the order of 50 years or more.
Does one take the view that our war is a Just war, and that our priority is to make, and the ME by extension, a region safe for democracy. Or is it a cynical one to reduce, by taking the most powerful and central Arab state in the ME, dragging it onto a civil war, and thus drag all our enemies into it – all the while claiming that our intentions are honourable.
Augustine or Machiavelli, that is the question.
DaveP: I believe the Iraq invasion was done for all the publicly stated reasons and this unstated reason:
– to have a base from which to eventually attack Iran and Saudi Arabia.
Bush did say we’d be at war for years and years. I’m one of the few people who remember this (I’m not saying you don’t). Of course, the fact everyone is expecting an immenent pullout is his fault for not communicating enough.
” to have a base from which to eventually attack Iran and Saudi Arabia.”
Ah, yes James, and the point not being that we would plan to attack those places but, more importantly, that we *could*. And I think you might well have added a couple more ME countries to those two you mentioned.
And, the future being uncertain, the word “attack” could well be replaced with “attack or support”. Options. Stabilization.
Tyouth: , yes James, and the point not being that we would plan to attack those places but, more importantly, that we *could*.
Yes, I can agree with that. Like you said, future isn’t certain. I’m sure the hope is that an attack wouldn’t be neccesary. I’m a pessimist though.
Comments are closed.