Monday, January 15, 2007

Right But for the Wrong Reasons

Instapundit points out this post by Jane Galt. She is basically saying that the anti-war types have no claim to better judgment than the pro-war people because none of them predicted the reasons for our failure in Iraq. You might remember that the most rabid anti-war people were predicting that ten thousand Americans would die during the invasion and that WMD would be unleashed on our advancing troops. Jane says a mea culpa for not recognizing that the Iraqis wouldn't want to be liberated.

To that, you may guess, I say nonsense! It has not been a failure. Some objectives have been met. The Iraqi dead have been grossly over-estimated. We are damping down a potential bloodbath and standing between two religious antagonists who would love nothing better than direct military confrontation.

Despite the assertions of James Baker, we have very little chance of losing the thing militarily, even with Iran stirring up the pot. We have nothing to be ashamed of, other than Abu Ghraib and a few incidents of excess. We have a great deal IMO to be proud of. The only place we can lose this thing is in the hearts of the American people. Is the public willing to make the necessary sacrifices and take the required bloody-minded choices. Maybe not, and that's what we should be ashamed of. On September 11, 2001, we were willing to make great sacrifices and strike out at the enemy. Today we get teary-eyed at the thought of a mass-murderer losing his pop-top.

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3 Comments:

At Tuesday, January 16, 2007 12:22:00 AM, Blogger Frank Warner said...

The liberation and democratization of Iraq are pretty much on the schedule any reasonable person could have expected.

The odd blips in the prediction game were, first, just before the March 2003 invasion, when many "experts" predicted up to 30,000 Americans killed in house-to-house fighting in Baghdad, and, second, in May 2003, when President Bush acted far too optimistic that "major combat" was over.

Believe it or not, the Iraq war is a low-level war in slow motion. The casualties are relatively low for the forcible conversion of a police state into a democracy, but because the process is slow, it looks uglier than the far bloodier wars that preceded it.

We did expect that the 20 percent minority that had preferential treatment under Saddam would continue to be a problem after the liberation, but short of leveling Fallujah, Tikrit and Ramadi with nuclear weapons, there was no magic bullet to prevent the Sunni Arab reaction.

The Shiite majority eventually was going to claim its rightful say in Iraq, even if it first had to endure another generation of tortures at the hands of the Hussein family. But if U.S. forces weren't there to mitigate the sectarian clashes, just imagine how much bloodier the war would be.

"Ethnic cleansing" would be too kind a phrase for the alternative that awaited Iraq. And if the U.S. weren't involved, the resulting "order" would be different, too: another totalitarian dictatorship.

Freedom will win in Iraq, thanks to the U.S.-led liberators. And because Iraq will be free, it will have its best chance ever at a lasting peace.

 
At Tuesday, January 16, 2007 9:23:00 AM, Blogger mal said...

yup,,I still have not figured out the racket around Saddams execution.

 
At Tuesday, January 16, 2007 6:17:00 PM, Blogger jj mollo said...

Frank,

I agree with the way you look at this except that I'm no longer confident that America can stay the course. Many people are still looking at this as the US beating up on the Iraqis. One of my in-laws, of Irish extraction, believes that we are like England and the Iraqis are like the Irish Republicans (the noble Irish Republicans).

Mal,

I could understand the fuss if it were for someone a little more worthy. Some people are simply opposed to the death penalty. But, seriously, these executions are bad occasions to start complaining about deaths in Iraq. There have to be some standards established. Should we really worry about the final dignity of someone who has gassed little children and drilled holes in the heads of teenagers?

 

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