Sunday, May 06, 2007

Tell me again what will happen if we withdraw?

Front paged at Booman Tribune, ePluribus Media and My Left Wing.

Frankly, I’m past outraged and more tired of the old platitudes that come out of the usual robotic mouths of Bush, McCain, Cheney, Guiliani, Hannity, O’Reilly and any of the other talking meatsticks about all of the horrific things that will happen if the evil lib’ruls and Democrats get their way and a timetable is set for troop withdrawal from Iraq.

Notwithstanding the whole “All the terrorists would have to do is mark their calendars and gather their strength” line of crap, being ludicrous for many reasons, this is just another round in the permanent vacation from reality that most of the republican party has been on for the better part of the last decade.

President Bush, May 5, 2007: If we were to leave Iraq before the government can defend itself, there would be a security vacuum in the country. Extremists from all factions could compete to fill that vacuum, causing sectarian killing to multiply on a horrific scale.

Just don’t pay any attention to the over 50 who were killed today alone or that a torture chamber was found this past weekend (in Iraq, not in America or Gitmo) or that a dozen US troops were killed today alone.

President Bush, May 5, 2007: The goal of the new strategy he is implementing is to help the Iraqis secure their capital, so they can make progress toward reconciliation and build a free nation that respects the rights of its people, upholds the rule of law, and fights extremists alongside the United States in the war on terror.

Except for the little fact that the BBC is reporting that “bombs continue to rock Iraq’s capital despite an 11 week security clampdown”. Or that the architects of the escalation, Fred Kagan and Jack Keane doubted that their plan could be successful with anything less than 30,000 additional troops.

President Bush, May 1, 2007: That means American commanders in the middle of a combat zone would have to take fighting directions from politicians 6,000 miles away in Washington, D.C. This is a prescription for chaos and confusion, and we must not impose it on our troops.

But what about current Secretary of Defense Robert Gates who isn’t so keen on the escalation? Doesn’t that cause some confusion when the head of the Pentagon is saying that the Democratic call for withdrawal timetables will put pressure on the Iraqis? And what about the 2nd in command in Iraq saying that this military escalation is not enough to save Iraq? Does that demoraliza our troops?

President Bush, May 1, 2007: Last week, General Petraeus was in Washington to brief me, and he briefed members of Congress on how the operation is unfolding. He noted that one of the most important indicators of progress is the level of sectarian violence in Baghdad. And he reported that since January, the number of sectarian murders has dropped substantially.

Of course, much of that drop in violence is because car bombings (one of the top causes of violence) is now being excluded from the murder count. A great way to report a decrease in violence, murder and deaths – just stop counting the top causes of violence, murder and death. And please pay no mind to the fact that US troop deaths are higher over the past six months than in any six month period since the invasion.

John McCain, Republican debate: We must win in Iraq. If we withdraw, there will be chaos; there will be genocide; and they will follow us home.

One person who is using the term “genocide massacres” about Iraq is Greg Stanton, vice president of the International Association of Genocide Scholars and the Washington-based Genocide Watch. As for there being chaos, well, newspapers in Utah and Virginia (this paper supported the invasion), Minnesota, as well as other countries’ papers. So I think we are a little late there.

Rudy Giuliani, May 1, 2007: "In the history of war, I have never heard of a situation in which one nation is required to not only retreat, but give a schedule of its retreat to the enemy," Giuliani said. "I mean, when has an army that has to retreat ever had to give a printed-out list of how it's going to retreat to its enemy? That's not the most prudent thing to do."

Never mind it being perfectly ok to call for withdrawal timetables when it wasn’t your disaster, um occupation, I mean “war” or when the other party is in charge of the White House.

Dick Cheney, April 22, 2007: First of all, they're wrong; we're making significant progress. We've had major success on the political front in terms of three national elections last year by the Iraqis.

Too bad that government rarely gets a quorum and is taking ALL of July AND August off. And too bad there is so much infighting among the Shiite ruling party that the government is in danger of collapse. All this amid whispers of the (still remote for now) possibility of a “no confidence” vote Maliki.

Dick Cheney, April 22, 2007: We do have a plan. It's there for anybody who wants to take a look at it. The Democrats have repeatedly made this charge. It's simply not the case. There's a good plan in place. We are making significant progress.

Just one hitch: the “Plan” is a secret and the republicans won’t tell what it is. Unfortunately, McCain isn’t in on the secret as he has no “Plan B”. Even General Petraeus said that “things may get worse before they get better”. Things getting worse is, by definition, not making progress.

So can we please stop with this nonsense? There is no conceivable way for anyone to measure any success. There is no logic behind the statements of those who want us out of their own country so they can try and put together their shattered lives “following us home”. Al Qaeda wanted to hit us “here at home” and did. If they want to again, they will, regardless of whether we stay in Iraq. Besides, 94 percent of Iraqis have an unfavorable view of al Qaeda, with 82 percent expressing a very unfavorable view, and 93 percent have an unfavorable view of bin Laden, with 77 percent very unfavorable. So if/when there continues to be fighting in Iraq the only common enemy will be al Qaeda. Now, there is a 2nd common enemy (our troops), and we are Public Enemy Number One (hat tip to Chuck D).

No more lies. No more procrastination or finger pointing. Not even our own generals who are executing this latest failure of a strategy think it will be a success. It is time to bring this occupation to an end.