Posted: 10/30/06 21:00
by Dave Mindeman
OK, let's stretch the bounds of imagination and say that I was a neutral party in this election. Let's say I have mixed opinions about the Iraq War and I actually listen to what Bush is saying about the subject. It's a stretch but let's just assume....
President Bush is saying (as he did today) that the difference between Democrats and Republicans is that Democrats want to "leave" Iraq, while Republicans want to "win" in Iraq.
Now, as an "independent" voter, let me process that. The Iraq "situation" has been going on for over 3 years now. Our soldiers are getting killed as much or more today, then they were at the beginning. The government that we are propping up in Baghdad is incapable of stopping the violence and sometimes ties
our hands when we look for solutions. They are even beginning to question the very policies of the US administration that keeps them in power.
We still do not have a handle on the electrical grid and clean water. The sectarian violence (the euphemism for civil war) grows more gruesome each day and the militias are the real police force.
Now where in all of that is there even the hint of victory? Victory or defeat is completely out of context now. We won the military portion of this a long time ago. We are now an occupying police force -- and not a very successful one at that because we have no real allies here. We need a political solution... the concept of victory no longer pertains to this mess.
Democrats are right. We have to leave. Not abruptly...but with more actual will than the current US government can muster. New ideas, new plans, new political solutions are crucial. We need a comprehensive group of nations at the table -- not ultimatums and threats with no teeth.
It is not about winning or losing. It is about stability vs. chaos. The win or lose rhetoric simply proves that this administration cannot take us where we need to go. It is not a matter of "if" we leave but having a real plan that leaves as soon as we can, with a stable government left behind that can figure out its own path to "victory".