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Unpopular Ideas

Ramblings and Digressions from out of left field, and beyond....

Location: Piedmont of Virginia, United States

All human history, and just about everything else as well, consists of a never-ending struggle against ignorance.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Cutting (Everybody's Losses) and Running (Along Home)

For a long time people as far apart on the political spectrum as GW Bush and Al Franken have dismissed with sneers any suggestion that the troops of the Coalition of the Willing, mainly U.S., pull their wagons together into some fearsome convoys and leave Iraq NOW. They and many others apply to this idea what they consider to be the supremely derisive term "cutting and running."

For Franken the presence of the troops in Iraq comes in handy so that he can make himself feel good by going over there once in a while to entertain them under the umbrella of the USO, and so that he can come back and report on conditions there first-hand -- or at least the American side of things. Understandably he sees little or nothing of the Iraqi side, and so, when he gets back, he can never have much of anything worthwhile to report from that considerably more vital direction.

Meanwhile GW Bush won't hear of leaving soon, because he was born with more than his share of the natural human reluctance to concede that one has made a horrible mistake. But, as he was one of the least fit men in the country to be presented with the office of President, nearly everything he and his people have done have been huge mistakes, and it is already crystal clear that in that office he has performed worse than all 40-odd previous holders of the position. That would be true even without the Iraq debacle.

A day or two ago the dome of one of Iraq's oldest, most beautiful, and most revered mosques, in Samarra, was wrecked by a bomb, and that was followed by an upsurge of the already high number of killings of Iraqis, especially in Baghdad, while many other mosques were damaged as well. I think this is a sure sign that all previous pretensions need to be thrown overboard, and the presence of the U.S. troops in Iraq is pointless. When the Shiites and the Sunnis start upscaling strikes at each other's mosques, then you know it's all over -- unless operatives of some kind on the U.S. side had something to do with the Golden Mosque attack, as some Iraqi leaders are charging. The U.S. troops aren't preventing much, because they can't be everywhere, whereas the numerous enraged Iraqis can be anywhere as well as everywhere. They have a 192 to 1 advantage in numbers, and they are at home, whereas the Americans are as far away from theirs as it is possible to be, save for some spot in outer space.

If he doesn't spend all his time in the daze that his behavior habitually suggests, GW Bush must suspect deep down that the forces he sent into Iraq have just made things worse there instead of better, and they will have to leave soon. But he is hoping for time, the time that Johnson and Nixon contrived to get for having withdrawal from Vietnam not happening on their watches, and because of that, GW Bush -- unlike the most rabid, evil, and thoughtless of his supporters -- is probably beside himself with joy that he isn't eligible for a third term.


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