January 13, 2007

Exit Strategy for Iraq: Blame the Iraqis

In case it needs to be said, the strategy for extricating the US from Iraq will be to say that "We tried to give Iraq freedom, but they're too primative to grab the golden ring." In other words, "It's not our fault the Iraqi's are unable to seize this golden opportunity."

Both Robert Fisk and Gary Younge have made this observation. They both work for British newspapers.

Keep in mind that this is the strategy for winning the minds of the US public. The rest of the world won't buy this line. The US will have created more animosity and terrorists (AKA blowback). If we want future security in the US, we need to punish those who started the Iraqi war of aggression. This will buy some good will from people in the world who despise the US. It will help the US gain some of its lost credibility.

Punishing Bush and his war-of-aggression conspirators won't solve all ills, but it would make things better.

Surely the blame lies with Bush for starting the war of aggression. But that might be too sweeping for some to swallow. Here's a more specific example from an article by Peter Maass

A scathing report from the Center for Strategic and International Studies, still in draft form [in May 2005] but posted on the center's Web site, blames senior American officials for these failures of Iraqi will. ''The police and the bulk of the security forces were given grossly inadequate training, equipment, facilities, transport and protection,'' states the report, written by Anthony Cordesman, a military expert and former Pentagon official. ''These problems were then compounded by recruiting U.S. police advisers -- some more for U.S. domestic political reasons than out of any competence for the job -- with no area expertise and little or no real knowledge of the mission that the Iraqi security and police forces actually had to perform.'' The report seems to be referring to, among others, Bernard Kerik, the former New York City police commissioner, who was the first police adviser to L Paul Bremer III, administrator of the Coalition Provisional Authority. Kerik left after three and a half months. Although the report notes some progress in recent months, it concludes: ''Unprepared Iraqis were sent out to die. . . The fact that some died as a result of U.S. incompetence and neglect was the equivalent of bureaucratic murder.''

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