Sunday, October 16, 2005

Thoughts on Iraq

They voted.

We haven't won. But we are further down the road.
We will win. We have three years. You don't win guerrilla wars quickly. You need to be patient. I lived through the sixties. If those bombers had been as willing to kill, just as many people would have died. The reason they didn't was that it is a stupid tactic. In Iraq, all the terrorists are doing is generating anger against them. Apparently AQ agrees with that.

When we pull back to secure bases to prepare for Iran, local forces will finish the job. We need more time for training, the bombings do slow down recovery. It isn't easy, but compared to where I expected us to be after two years, we are on track. I expected a five year program. We are after all building up a democracy from scratch. When did our occupation forces leave Japan and Germany? Read some of the writings about the low expectations about Japan after WWII. We underestimate the attraction of freedom. I welcome a democratic Iraq to the UN.

I give Saddam credit for preparing a defense in depth, and not surrendering. It has made it harder. It was something we didn't expect, although it is a scorched earth plan like the Russians used to defeat Napoleon. It is hard to imagine your opponent will destroy his own country. Since we had almost no human agents in Iraq, it isn't surprising we had some surprises. He didn't surrender. The Sunni still have illusions of empire. At some point they will realize democracy is the last best hope they have of survival. It is suicide to fight a civil war outnumbered 3 to 1. If we cut and ran, the Sunni in Iraq would be the ones who would suffer. The Kurds have been restrained. There have been few revenge killings. We haven't given the Kurds any credit for their restraint. Although, our promises of justice may have been believed by the Kurds. Without our restraining presence, blood would have flowed, to revenge Saddam's horrors. It would have made 20,000 to 40,000 deaths since the war a drop in a very bloody bucket.

My main reason for optimism is that Bush has guts. He will not give up. That is all we need to know. The MSM can and will do damage. They are making it harder, and killing Americans by encouraging the enemy. At some point we will experience a terrorist horror in this country much worse than most can imagine. This war isn't over. It will not be over, until those who think they can impose Islam by force are completely defeated. It happened in 732, it happened in 1683. It didn't happen in 1453, and that cost the world. It also led to Columbus.

I am a realistic optimist. History helps me understand where we are going. Be not afraid. We can win. It may not be easy.


Blogger anybudee said...

You think we're going into Iran? Why?

Blogger PresbyPoet said...

Short answer:
1. Character of George W. Bush, when he says he is going to do something he does it. He said Iran will not be permitted to have nukes.

2. Character of Iran leadership. The mullahs have gotten rid of the veneer of democracy. They have put hard-liners in authority. They act as though they will go forward to get nukes. They have said they will attack Israel when they get nukes. An attack on Israel means a likely "Samson option", (all major Muslim cities destroyed, hundreds of millions killed, and oil production reduced for years). That consequence is much worse than if we go into Iran, if diplomacy fails, which it seems in the process of doing.

Given the character of these two forces, it is like Germany/England in 1938. Either there will be war; or Iran will stand down. Bush isn't Chamberlain.

Neither option is desirable. Horrible is the best description, but like 1938 and Munich, appeasement is likely to result in far more ultimate horror.

I fear Iran is sure we will not act, so they go forward. It is like Iraq, Saddam was sure we would not attack, so he didn't cooperate. His miscalculation has cost 2,000 American lives, his sons, and soon his own life.

The cost in Iran will be much higher. 10,000 American lives, 300,000 Iranian. But the cost of 300 nukes going off in the middle east stretches even my imagination.

I don't have any prophecy on this. I don't have a crystal ball.
All I have is a clear read of history.

Bush may end up impeached. He has guts. This is a non-negotiable.

I pray I am wrong.

Blogger anybudee said...

You might be right, but..

It's inevitable for Iran to have nukes (if they don't already - Khan) what they must do is forswear using them offensively. A nuclear Israel scares them to death. (and me too) Balance of power is the only thing that will prevent a major no-holds-barred war. I don't trust Israel to keep us out of a 100,000-US-death war any more than I trust the Iranians. At least they don't pose to be our friends. There are people in Tel Aviv who don't care how many gentile soldiers need to die for Israel's security.

I believe that Bush doesn't have the ass to back up his mouth on this one. Iran will get nukes, and like Israel, act coy about it. We will get assurances against their 1st use. And everybody saves face.

How did you get the word verification thing?


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