Wednesday, August 02, 2006

More on the War

This is what happens when you don't really have a plan.

First of all, you can't do war on the cheap. War is expensive in treasure and in blood, and your whole society has to be prepared to tighten their belts to support the soldiers in the field.
Officials worry that behind the Army’s lack of readiness lies a titanic mismatch between the Bush administration’s dream of resurrecting American prestige in the region through the use of hard power and the scant resources they have devoted to it.

Because if you run out of money to keep your soliders in the field, there is no money left over to rebuild the vital infrastructures that eventually allow the conquered to reestablish commerce and society and win the peace so that our soldiers can come home.

Though the media keeps playing up the civil war angle, I see nothing but continued chaos. A civil war would have sides we could negotiate with, or at least pick a side. This situation is anarchy and thuggery; rioting with heavy weapons and hidden bombs. When are the police going to be ready? Where is the finish line and how close are we?

And the American 'debate' exists in the playground of politics, where our only options are to 'cut and run' or 'stay a course (without a plan).' Neither sound like strategically sound options.

Right now, we are forced to pray for the safety of our people, and hope news like this is true, and Iraqis will be in control by the end of this year.

1 comment:

Buzzzbee said...

In light of today's hearings and this post, I have a couple of new questions about the situation in Iraq. These questions were inspired by none other than Republican John Warner. Sorry folks, it didn't mean for it to be this long.

I agree with the media on this one. This conflict does have sides and we have chosen one. We're on the side of the Shia-led Government. We are fighting mostly Sunni and a small amount of al-qaeda. They all have interests. The Shia and Sunni both want power(hence the fighting) and al-qaeda wants to keep the violence going. We can't negociate because the Shia are on our side(for now), and al-qaeda has nothing to gain from negotiating with us. The Sunni might be willing to bargain, but I doubt we'd be willing to come close to anything they would consider satisfying.

So, my questions(to the Pres. and DOD) are as follows:

1: What will we do in the case of a full scale Civil War?
Things are bad now, but they can get much, much worse. As long as we’re supporting their adversaries, the Sunni will continue to attack us. The Shia have already let us know how much they care about the lives of American Soldiers by putting forward a proposal to offer amnesty to those who have “only” killed Americans. This while American Soldiers are still fighting in Iraq. As if to say, if you can kill them without them killing you go ahead, you won’t have to worry about any further punishment. I know amnesty is usually granted, but you don’t announce it while the guys on the receiving end are still in the line of fire. Also, considering the lack of actual, old-fashioned battlefields, if there is a large scale civil war there’s no way our boys can avoid being right in the middle.

2: What exactly do we have to gain by staying in there?
The Shia seem willing to let our Army prop up their government for as long as we're willing. I'm considering joining the U.S. Army Special Forces after I finish college so, I've been looking into what all's involved. It will only take about 1yr from start to finish to make me an elite Green Beret. It only takes 6 weeks of Boot Camp to make a regular soldier. Three years later with all the money and resources we've been pouring in there they should have a decent sized army. They don't. That aside, best case scenario: we end up with a functioning Shia-Muslim Democracy. We all know how well that's working out next door in Iran. The Prime Minister's already shown that he's not going to be on our side on everything just because we're over there defending him with the blood of our Soldiers. For all we know the Sunni may want a pseudo-democratic government of their own. All of our non-Jewish "friends" in that region are Sunni, so if history is any indicator, a Sunni government would be easier to deal with. All of this plus the new Shia-Crescent everyone’s been talking about. Iraq and Iran have for the most part kept their guns aimed at each other (save the stray SCUD into Israel and invasion of Kuwait). Now they would be allies? Is there anyway that could be a good thing?

I have pretty much agreed that we can’t abandon Iraq for the fear of it devolving into chaos, but it appears that it already has. It now seems that propping up this weak government will only serve to prolong the chaos and death. If we left, one side would win and the fighting would stop. Based on what I’ve seen, it doesn’t appear that either side would be a guaranteed ally, so why continue to pour our resources down the Iraqi toilet?

P.S. What the hell’s going on in Afghanistan??? We’re still fighting the Taliban???