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For Mr. Pipes: A lost cause and a lesson [unfortunately not] learned

Reader comment on item: Hugging Iraq's Leaders

Submitted by Pro-Israeli Democrat (United States), May 9, 2006 at 14:15

Hugs or no hugs, it really does not matter. I believe that Iraq is not on the road to becoming another Iran [as I once did], but that it is already another Lebanon [which in my estimation is even worse]...and for what? Oil? Big Business? It certainly has not led to a reduction in global terrorism, and in fact, it is now a battlefield for terrorist groups and their state sponsers [Iran, Syria, and especially Saudi Arabia] to fight Western "infidels". It hasn't helped the cause of human rights, either, because Shiite death squads are now killing Sunni just for being Sunni.

Meanwhile, as the spin-doctors at FOX News [which is no more than a mouthpiece for the Bush Administration] and the White House itself continually try to mask the problems with Iraq [and point to a conspiratorial "liberal" media, which in truth does not exist], the Sunnis continue blowing themselves up on "martyrdom" operations. I highly doubt that Al-Maliki, like his predecessor, will be able to control the sectarian tensions which have plunged the country into a repeating and remitting civil war. Thus, it scarcely matters whether White House officials are hugging Iraq's leaders, because the country is a lost cause anyway. Again, it is merely a way for the neoconservatives to convey the message that Iraq is a happy place with happy people. Are death squads, suicide bombers, torture, and the random killings of homosexuals "happy" things? I didn't think so...

As for us...the latest estimate is that the war may wind up costing $811 billion dollars!! I don't know what percentage of our economy that is, but certainly that money could have been used for education, for family planning programs, to help Israel defend itself, or to thwart the threat of a nuclear Iran [which is a VERY real danger to Israel, Turkey, Lebanon, Egypt, Azerbaijan, etc.] It could also have been used to help the Afghan people in postwar reconstruction. Quite frankly, I think we were better off with Saddam Hussein. Yes, he was one of the most brutal tyrants of the last century, but I'd rather have a tyrant in power than watch the coming of another Lebanon war. We are supposed to be fighting a war on terror, not a war on dictatorship. If we are fighting a war on dictatorship instead, than who knows how many countries we will invade: North Korea, Turkmenistan, China, Russia, Zimbabwe, Cuba, Venezuela, Belarus, Burma/Myanmar, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, etc. Only ideologues [be they liberal, conservative, or neither] would consider such a thing possible...If we must do that, than we may as well destroy the entire world. Half of this planet is ruled by one dictator or another.

Furthermore, I would much rather have Saddam than give Iran any leverage with its nuclear program. Due to what has happened in Iraq, I do not trust the Bush Administration with "Operation Iranian Freedom"...We simply do not have enough troops and may well be forced to use "tactical" nuclear weapons. We'd better not invade that country. Any notion of launching an Iraq-style invasion of Iran is now completely absurd, and I think that any politician who promotes such a thing is out of his or her mind. We are having enough trouble pacifying Iraq. Imagine what pacifying a xenophobic country three times its size is going to be like. If Iraq is going to cost us $811 billion, imagine what an invasion, occupation, and reconstruction of Iran would cost. A helluva lot more than that, of that I am sure.

I think all of us have learned the lesson that George W. Bush cannot fight terror for his life. Nor can we trust the White House to admit the awful truth about what is happening to both American Soldiers and Iraqi civilians. This is not an ordinary liberal rant [although I am certainly liberal when it comes to domestic policy and a moderate on foreign affairs], for this is not a battle between liberals and conservatives. It is a battle between the White House and everyone else. Even hard-line Republicans like Nebraskan Senator Chuck Hagel have come out against the war [and I am encouraged to see the far right and far left unite on SOMETHING]. At least Ronald Reagan had the balls to admit that intervention in Lebanon was a mistake. Before we invaded Iraq, it was not a battlefield in the war on terror. However, it is now THE battlefield. The Soviet invasion of Afghanistan produced al-Qaeda and several thousand other groups, as the Lebanon War produced Hezbollah. Who knows what Iraq will ultimately lead to. One thing is certain, it is as if the Vietnam debacle [not to mention the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan] did not even happen. Whoever emerges as President in 2008, I hope that he or she creates an administration with something that Bush's puppet masters at the Pentagon and the Project For a New American Century lack. That, of course, is, a fairly accurate sense of history. Let's return to rationalism and realism.


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