The not utterly reliable Times of London says there is a secret plan to end the war — by leaving Iraq before 2008.
American and Iraqi officials have set a date for giving Iraqs forces responsibility for security across the country.
Under a plan to be presented to the UN Security Council next month, the Iraqi Government would assume authority from coalition troops by the end of next year.
Only hours after Donald Rumsfeld was replaced as US Defence Secretary, American, British and Iraqi officials spoke openly about accelerating the handover process.
If, as increasingly seems to be the case, our troops are not actually doing any good and are being pounded for it, then ignominious retreat is the right thing to do. And I’d just as soon it be done sooner rather than later. On the other hand, I accept that having wrongly invaded and created a mess brings with it some moral duty to try to sort it out if there seems a way that can be achieved. At present, however, I don’t know anyone who knows how to do that.
On the radio yesterday, someone said that a majority of the American people no longer support the Iraq war. However, a majority also don’t support pulling out. That will change as casualties mount. I hope, without much hope, that the reason for staying another 12 months or more, is something more substantive than saving face, or the PR war, but is tied to achievable objectives on the ground.
Sometimes I wish that the republicans had run the war the way they were expected to from a historical perspective: ruthlessly.
The left and the right have different visions when it comes to geopolitics. I prefer the way of the left: negotiations first, war later as a last option, only if really necessary. But If the right is in charge, I expect them to at least follow their philosophy to its logical end.
In other words, I would have preffered we never invaded, but once we did, we should have gone gung-ho, full on, martial-law imposing, gangbusters on that place. Sure, the anti-war crowd would have a fit… but they already were, and the right claimed to ignore them anyway. But the right-wing leadership half-assed it. If their way had any chance of succeeding, they blew it.
I actually have some respect for the ruthless, realist, america-first vision of foreign policy, only becuase it is one way to keep us safe that works (not that I prefer it), but only if you don’t half-ass it.
The myth that ruthlessness alone can guarantee safety is not only dangerous but apparently immune to evidence. Any resistance, even that engendered by the ruthlessness itself, is seen as an indication, not that another approach might have worked better, but that the actions weren’t ruthless enough. Case after case throughout history of the negative results of an excessive reliance on force are reinterpreted as, “They grew soft.” Literally anything short of killing every human on Earth but one can be spun that way.