Friday, June 13, 2008

Thinking About Iraq

The Economist is guardedly optimistic about Iraq. This is interesting, since they started out supporting the invasion, and then, faced with the ensuing calamity, they admitted they'd been wrong. Now, given the multiplying indications that the tide may have turned, they are again optimistic. Yet they are still hedging their moral debts:
In highlighting the improved conditions in Iraq we do not mean to justify The Economist's support of the invasion of 2003 (see article). Too many lives have been shattered for that. History will still record that the invasion and occupation have been a debacle.
I'm not a great fan of knowing in advance what history will record. History has this practice of doing what it does, irrespective of what everybody said it would do. Just for the argument, if five years from now Iraq will be solidly on the road to free market democracy a-la-Turkey or Indonesia, to name some Muslim examples, then in 45 years history will remember the invasion as a strategic turning point. Not that very many of todays pundits will be around to know it.


Anonymous said...


Still, there are lessons to be learned. Because America is a democracy. When 500,000 men lay dead on the Civil War battlefields, we look back and recognize that the "costs were worth it" ... because, finally, slavery got to be expunged from our Constitution.

Also, America was wide open with empty spaces; and, so began the influx of immigrants from all over Europe. And, Jews were not stopped! That would come later. When there was a rent in the fabric of nationhood. Most Americans were coming out of their love affair with socialism. (Though, yes, some of the greatest works done by FDR, have socialism credentials written all over this stuff.)

Shows ya. You can't kill things. You can only accommodate them. This is also true of the English language; that borrows from so many other tongues. And, is also always "accommodating the changes that usage, brings." Believe it. Or not.

While America had the Civil War, the Europeans had the Crimean War. While America didn't really analyze its battlefields, stepping up to the plate were the British. You'd be surprised what you'd learn if all you did was look at mankind's wars. Which makes up the bulk of history; as it gets remembered from one generation to the next.

For some reason? The last big war was WW2. After that? American's been involved in growing it's military; no question about that. But the ways in which we fight has changed drastically.

And, poor Bush, without a tongue he can wave at problems; has been unable to "sell" the idea of Irak to the AMerican public. Even though we've learned more by being IN Irak, both in terms of dealing with terrorists ... who are the "new soldiers on the other side." And, also about how weak governments, on their own, can survive.

So, yes. Sometimes it pays to turn away from the subject. Will Irak stall like Viet Nam? I doubt it. But we were sending over draftees to Viet Nam. And, among the changes? They brought back wives. I kid you, not.

Sometimes American soldiers held the Vietnamese up to ridicule, by calling them "gooks." But as I said, many more flourished, here. And, today, the Vietnamese are part of the local surroundings. Southern California can do that! It's a nice place "to set up shop."

And, the "socialist mistake" isn't happening to the Vietnamese! Why? They've got the real deal in their past. And, they want no part of it now!

The Iraqis, on the other hand, are arabs. And, our American volunteers who go there are also glad to come home. That Bush had to learn to divest himself of the Saud's and their stinking "wish lists?" YOU BET! As I said, Bush hasn't made the sale. And, 9/11 has tainted the Saud's to a place where they are not liked. And, now they're hated. Every time an American pulls up to the pumps to buy gas, the Saud's in particular, are hated.

So no one is which them well, here.

Maybe, that's the gap?

I don't see us pulling away from Iraq, given its oil reserves. And, the good thing of killing Saddam, and his monsterous sons. What's ever in place now? Well, from Maliki, to Chalabi, to Allawi, the "new" politicians in town, could only come in once Saddam was gone.

Most people know Maliki was able to use his two decades worth of living between Damascus and Tehran, to Iraq's BENEFIT! Because? Well, the Saud's got terror. And, the Iraqis absorbed these killing fields. And, then they did terror back, to the sunni's. Halving the sunni population. And, putting all the palestinians, in Iraq, on the run.

As a matter of fact, Jordan and Syria; with Iraqi borders; have stopped the sunnis from coming in.

Heck, Jordan's used it's air space to terrify Sunnis who land in Amman, when all they want to do is "catch a flight out" ... Jailing them as soon as the plane from Bagdhad lands. And, then subjecting them to HORROR. Till they're willing to climb back onto a departing plane, back to Bagdhad.

Just in case you think arabs are all brothers; no. They are not.

And, getting into the palaces of any one of a number of arab countries, brings riches to your TRIBE. And, no one else's.

Most Americans, here, have forgotten about Chalabi. As a matter of fact, early on, when Tommy Franks spent 3 weeks pushing through to Bagdhad, to win America's ground war; Chalabi and his CIA trained goons arrived in a few C-130 transports. And, immediately began raiding the antiques. Even with time passing, I bet you remember this!

So, what surprised me, when Maliki finally went after Mookie's goons, was that Chalabi was still in Baghdad, AS A POLITICIAN WITH CLOUT! Not afraid to walk the streets. And, when the Iraqi Army hit ... so, too, was Chalabi's army on the march. You can't tell who did better. Because it's not advertised.

While things in Iraq have calmed down. And, when the next election comes about ... it should be interesting to see what happens.

At IRAQ THE MODEL, (where two sunni brothers blog of what's happening on the ground, in Baghdad) ... I remember reading that PARLIAMENT began to move (for Maliki), because, when he attacked Mookie's Mosul neighborhoods, ALLAWI began cooperating. And, laws were actually passing.)

From this, I can assure you that Irak is not like Vietnam! Which fell under the thumb of the Chinese. And, where NOW, the Chinese are terrorizing the Vietnamese. And, there's nothing, really, to be done. But that's another story.

Meanwhile, the real enemy remains the Wahabbi sect's version of Islam. Which has been funded by the Saud's.

What makes the Saud's so special? They think because they buy up busloads of American made military equipment that they're safe. And, of course, our air force, here, and our Navy over there, protects the oil shipments. Watched over, too, by satellite.

There is a whole modern world out there; where technology counts.

Bush? Even if he isn't going to be considered a failure ... because Irak is on the way to being a "stabilized" weak arab government ... doesn't mean there isn't enough money in Iraq's oil fields ... to make Irak a "player."

It's also a great training ground.

When Bush started his push, he waited long enough that people were already frustrated. His "failures" come from Paul Bremmer, and Donald Rumsfeld. Where you can slot people into positions where they stink. And, the good will, drowns.

But Bush recovered. And, you can't have wars without learning curves.

Too bad for Bush that he can't give speeches. And, it remains to be seen what sort of talent comes into the White House next.

History, by way of example, can show you how a president can be forgotten. In today's world, Thomas Jefferson is given credit for going after the Barbary Pirates. This is NOT true! Jefferson pulled the rug out from under "attack," and gave booty (A million dollars in tribute, plus gun boats). And, we didn't attack those muslim bastards until JAMES MONROE, in his second term as the 5th president of the United States, set in stone in the ONROE DOCTRINE.

By the way, the one thing that I think was said by Thomas Jefferson, but I could be wrong. Is that MEN DO NOT RIDE HISTORY'S EVENTS. Events ride into history."

So you don't have to remember James Monroe. And his terms in office. Ditto, for the junior Bush. Who managed to lose good will all on his own.

Yup. Having the ability to connect to people really counts for points. It's an odd gift. Or, to put it another way? How many men when they open their mouths to sing, sound like Pavarotti?

Anonymous said...


Ya gotta love history. It gives you a mountaintop vantage point, where you can look backwards. And, then? Go ahead. Draw any conclusions you'd like.

For instance. Julius Caesar had been out of Rome for more than a decade. And, he was both a genius; where Pompeii, competing with him, was not.

And, back in Rome, which got showered with the "booty" Caesar's soldiers, coulpled to his war tactics brought home ... Brought Caesar ANNIMOSITY. CICERO, for one, hated his guts. And, spoke out against him.

Caesar was poised at the Rubicon. To decide if "he should go home." Or not. WHen he crosses the Rubicon, however, the last remaining Republic of Rome, bites the dust.

And, yes, Caesar accumulated powers, along with enemies. When he went to the Forum on the Eides of March, about 50 men took turns knifing him. So what started out as a murder; finished up as the various factions began to compete, all over again.

If truth be known? Rome was gonna head downhill. And, Cicero would run for his life. (Not quite making the exit before he is killed.)

And, among the 3 vying for power? Not one genius. The genius, Julius Caesar, was dead. Marc Antony, going full tilt with Cleopatra's plans, also bites the dust. And, Pompeii loses to Octavious. Who when he is crowned emporer, changes his name to Augustus.

Of course, what puzzles me, is that Jesus is born prior to Caesar's crossing of the Rubicon.

Yet, Jesus, whom we're told is in contact with the "heavenly father," is not told that Rome will crap out. Now, why would dad leave off such a juicy outcome, I have no idea.

But don't forget, we're able to climb up history's path, and look backward.

By the way, with Irak now without the lunatic, Saddam, there are changed circumstances to view. And, you can include in this that we are also "post-Colonial.

FDR, himself, didn't enter WW2 because he had no sympathy with the Brits, and "where the sun didn't set" ... because FDR was against colonial rule. FDR "invented" the word UNITED NATIONS, early. Late 1941. And, he produced a document, for the ALLIES all to sign. And, he forced Winston Churchill into obtaining India's signature. That "Jewel in the Crown" will be exorcized; the way you remove a zit.

It's pretty much in American tradition that we let different groups of people, form and reform ways in which they can have self-rule. We let bygones be bygones.

So, I doubt it was ever America's intention to get deeply involved in Irak's day to day affairs. But, yes. We will stymie terror.

Terror is not stymied by conventional warfare. And, there are lots of hot spots around the globe. Where arms are sold to both sides. And, then? Well, then the "natives figure things out." Or they don't.

There are many things you could recognize about Islam, today. Where things were once reversed. And, Byzantium was the leader in arts and sciences; while the europeans were in the dark ages.

But that was yesterday. Or "bygones." Because with all the wealth at their fingertips, the arabs seems less likely to stop their tribal "games" ... than the indians were. In other words? People can sit on what becomes great assets. But they're not able to conquer their past habits. And, they have little to no interest in the work behind technological existence. Except for the fact that some, the Sauds in particular, can buy whatever it is they want; and still have money left over for their madrassas. And, the takeover of islam by the crazed Wahhabi cult.

Whether the Iraqis look for American support, or not, they sure do have their eyeballs glued to the wealth the Sauds own. And, they also know the benefits to the Sauds, of having friends in America.

My guess? Israelis too, even when they are of "two minds," still understand it's better to have America in a friendly posture; than one where the animosity rules the games that are played.

Add to this that citzens vote.

I have no idea who can win in November. Both American candidates have their negatives. But those negatives are far different from the one's Bush owns.

You also have problems going on, now, where the police, in cohoots with the rag-tag band of right wing lunatics, is after Olmert's scalp.

And, here? All you can tell is that Olmert survives day-by-day. In 1996 through 1998 ... Bill Clinton was being schmeared daily. He held his ground.

Perhaps, instead of journalists and pundits, in the new-new political world, you don't even have to keep your pants up, to win. You just need to survive day-by-day.

By the way, like it or not, Olmert is your genius. Look what happened to Rome (over time), when their genius was killed.

And, at no time ahead will there be another Shakespeare; reading Plutarch. But history does have its ways to trap the truth for exposure in what can be an eon away.

Don't ask me to guess. That's impossible. I just keep following the current story day-by-day.

And, yes. I'm never bored reading books containing history.