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Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Stay the course? What course?

The President recently told us that as long as he's president we'll be staying in Iraq until the job is done, thus again telling us to support staying the course. You have to ask yourself though exactly what course is he talking about (course differentiated from plan) -- the current one that seems to be an irreversible sink hole or a plan yet unstated to alter the current course. I have to say that either would be a breath of fresh air -- a stated course or plan, or something that at least seems thought out and has a chance of working.

I've stated on this blog before that while I've always been dead set against going into Iraq, it is a mess we're responsible for fixing and leaving before it's fixed would have grave consequences. Yes, hard to believe graver consequences are possible. But in recent weeks I'm beginning to rethink that position (gee, what a novel idea, rethinking positions as circumstances warrant) and am getting closer and closer to feeling that we're headed toward the graver consequences whether we have our troops there getting killed and injured or not.

"Well, then you're just telling the terrorists 'we quit and you win.'" Exactly what terrorists might that be; an insurgency upset that we're there or those fighting a religious civil war? Am I the only one sick and tired of being told anyone who fights against what we (careful with that "we," Zeb) want is a terrorist? Think for yourself for once and ask yourself why that's the word of choice from this administration to describe seemingly any enemy, any combatant, any disagreer. We had Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld recently imply that those of us who are against this "war on terrorism" are akin to Nazi sympathizers; and the President, though in softer terms, echoed that sentiment. Well, if you put those things together, are we not far from being told that we who oppose them are the enemy?

Then you have the likes of Ken Mehlman on Hardball the other night making the case that we need to stay in Iraq because Ayman al-Zawahiri has said al Qaeda wants to turn Iraq into another Afghanistan with training bases. If you nut jobs hadn't invaded Iraq and opened it up like a can of worms, we wouldn't be worried about them setting up training bases there. This kind of backwards, illogical, keep-our-asses-in-office-at-any-cost rhetoric is what pisses me off more than anything.
You bungled a mission that you cherry-picked the evidence to support, and then your reason for staying there is essentially "We f'd it up so bad we have to stay to keep the terrorists out, and you have to reelect us because we're the party that'll keep you safe." Safer? I don't feel safer. "Well, we haven't been attacked since 9/11." Gee, I forgot it was an everyday thing before 9/11.

You want to make me feel safer? How about you deal with al Qaeda, bin Laden, The Taliban, Pakistan, Iran and North Korea. There's a course, nay a plan, I could support.

On a different note...I was recently invited to be a writer for the independent/third party section of Watchblog, a three-perspective blog site that I've had linked for quite some time but don't believe I've introduced. So great for me, and hopefully Watchblog as well; but the time between applying and acceptance ran over me going back to working all those hours (yesterday 4:00 a.m. to 8:45 p.m.). So I won't get the opportunity to blog stuff there that I'm not blogging here. I barely have time to put up personal updates on All Things Zebster.


JollyRoger said...

Any discussion of "stay the course" really needs to illuminate exactly what the course is.

Americans have to be made to realize that we can neither win in Iraq, or even have a significant impact on the eventual outcome, without a dramatic increase in the numbers of boots on the ground. And if we're not willing to put the boots on the ground, then the only "course" left that makes any sense is to depart Iraq as soon as possible.

I know the facts in Iraq are not popular with the yellow-magnet crowd, but it's time we gave the Troops! some real Support! by extricating them from a couldron they can't do anything but die in.

Sally said...

I never thought the war in Iraq was properly planned and thought out. Saddam Hussein was a brutal dictator that at some point or another would have to be dealt with. Was that point in March 2003? No...but, we are there.

This is the problem: Iraq has been destabilized and has the power to destabilize an already explosive region. Because of that I had hoped that the US would go in quickly and fix the country after removing Saddam Hussein. It is the only right thing to do since the US destabilized Iraq.

That was my position up until a few weeks ago...stop using the Iraq War as a photo opportunity and a platform for slogans!!! But, the situation there has gone from very bad to unimaginably nightmarish. Besides saying "stay the course", has Bush put forth a coherent plan to rebuild Iraq?

Jeff Huber said...

Congrats on the Watchblog gig!

Like you, I don't see this "course" going anywhere but hell in a handbag.