07 April 2008

"Winning Isn't Everything..."

I'm sure you know how to finish the sentence in my subject line, don't you?!
A few posts back I asked about military leaders and politics.
Stephen Green approaches the question from a different angle, and relates it to political games being played while our troops try to do their jobs.

4 comments:

Rodolfo said...

Greybeard-What would you say is our long-term purpose for a continued military presence in Iraq?

Greybeard said...

"Long-term purpose" Rodolfo?
I don't think we intend to stay one second longer than necessary, but obviously we'll stay long enough to insure the Iraqi government can stand on it's own.
The worst thing we could possibly do would be another irresponsible cut-and-run repeat of Viet Nam, resulting in the death of MILLIONS of innocents. As caring, passionate, "progressive minded" citizens of the world, we certainly don't want to be responsible for the death of millions, do we?
You tell me... what do you think our "long-term purpose for a continued presence in Iraq" is?

nec Timide said...

Available options boil down to three:

1. Pull out now and let the factions that have a stomach for the job (we all know who they are) sort out Iraq to their satisfaction.

2. Stay involved until there is a responsible government that can stand on its own.

3. Re-install a puppet military strong man.

None are going to be pretty, but as far as long term results go we've had lots of experience with 1 and 3. I think it is time to give option 2 a chance.

Rodolfo said...

I'm sure there are many other places we could go to show the world how caring and passionate we are. But we don't so we're not as caring and passionate as we'd like to believe.

Our choices in Iraq range from bad to REALLY bad. People will die regardless if we choose to stay or go. If our purpose is to build a government from scratch then I agree with McCain that we will have to be there indefinitely. But the fact that there are many Iraqis that don't want us to be there in the first place makes this a very difficult task. How do we convince a people to come to our side WITHOUT killing them and them killing us? If war is the only solution then both sides are screwed either way.

My proposal is for the Iraqis to adopt a 1st amendment that is similar to ours. If they are unwilling then I don't see any hope. It is one of my profound beliefs that our 1st amendment is the oil that lubricates our democracy. This is the heart of the issue. This is what separates us from them. This is what separates us from the Commies. Free speech vs censorship. Maybe I'm completely way off. But I wonder how many Iraqis view our "freedoms" the same way. Do they look at it as a triumph of our Bill of Rights or the work of the Devil? If it's the latter then our situation is hopeless.