Congress is debating the Iraq War again. The article points out that Democrats appear to be divided into three ‘camps’; leave Iraq this year, object to setting any kind of timetable, begin redeploying forces (that means bring them home) by year’s end but don’t set a date when all troops should be out.
Setting a date by which all Coalition military will be out if Iraq is to set the timetable under which al Qaeda, insurgents and Islamic extremists can begin their efforts in earnest. It is the sure way to gain short term peace. Why fight a vastly more powerful enemy when you know that they will be leaving in any case. Better to stand down your forces until the vastly more powerful force has left the area and your forces can engage on a more advantageous environment.
To begin redeployment of our own troops without setting an end date is to ensure a more dangerous environment for our own forces and further endanger the new government in Iraq. It would make political expediency rather than tactical and strategic demand the deciding factor in troop mobilization.
Setting no timetable is the position of the administration and Republicans. I think they should word that differently. I believe there is a timetable of sorts. When the Iraqi government is prepared to stand before the United Nations and commit to responsibility for its own defence, internal and external, it will be time for Coalition force to leave in the most expeditious fashion possible. Put another way, the timetable for the withdrawal of Coalition forces in Iraq should be event driven, not time or calendar driven.
Alas, this debate is not about Iraq. It is not about U.S. military personnel. This debate is about an upcoming election. Polls tell us that the Iraq war is unpopular. Some/many politicians want to define themselves through their position on the war. The message they are delivering in Congress is intended for the American voting public.
Our enemies believe that America is fat, lazy and complacent. Our enemy believes that America does not have the political will to finish what we have started. It would be very interesting to see what would happen in Iraq if our political leaders were to stand together and tell the world, we are united in our resolve to provide the nation of Iraq with the security they need to establish a new government founded on the principles of democracy and liberty. It is a pity that we will never find out.
[posted with ecto]