We Have Met the Enemy and He Is Us
Iraqis Wasting An Opportunity, U.S. Officers Say With Attacks Ebbing, Government Is Urged to Reach Out to Opponents
By Thomas E. Ricks Washington Post Staff Writer Thursday, November 15, 2007; A01
CAMP LIBERTY, Iraq -- Senior military commanders here now portray the intransigence of Iraq's Shiite-dominated government as the key threat facing the U.S. effort in Iraq, rather than al-Qaeda terrorists, Sunni insurgents or Iranian-backed militias.
In more than a dozen interviews, U.S. military officials expressed growing concern over the Iraqi government's failure to capitalize on sharp declines in attacks against U.S. troops and Iraqi civilians. A window of opportunity has opened for the government to reach out to its former foes, said Army Lt. Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, the commander of day-to-day U.S. military operations in Iraq, but "it's unclear how long that window is going to be open."
The lack of political progress calls into question the core rationale behind the troop buildup President Bush announced in January, which was premised on the notion that improved security would create space for Iraqis to arrive at new power-sharing arrangements. And what if there is no such breakthrough by next summer? "If that doesn't happen," Odierno said, "we're going to have to review our strategy."
The first mention of having to 'review our strategy.' It seems to me the problem is in not understanding the Iraqi lack of strategy--or interest.
They will be a broken country until we get the hell out--and then they will fight each other to some sort of accommodation, but it will not be our choice, our vision or probably even to our interest.
War is the choice of the intellectually lazy, a galvanizer of nations coming apart, a last-stand of administrations and dictatorships on the rocks. War is never (and has never been) worth the costs.
620,000 dead in our Civil War, at a time when slavery was economically through, the American South virtually destroyed and the aftermath of that war alive for a hundred years. 20 million dead in a 1st World War that wrecked Europe and lasted a mere 20 years until the slaughter of 40 million in WWII, that destroyed what was left of Europe and ravaged Asia.
Lives lost, 70 million, lives destroyed, countless. Lessons learned, none.
War simply does not work.