Sunday, September 09, 2007

And then there was chaos...

By Libby

Kevin Drum posts one of the best pieces I've ever seen on why we should withdraw from Iraq. Read the whole thing, it's not that long but here's some key grafs.
Needless to say, this is nonsense. Israel has fought war after war in the Middle East. Result: no regional conflagration. Iran and Iraq fought one of the bloodiest wars of the second half the 20th century. Result: no regional conflagration. The Soviets fought in Afghanistan and then withdrew. No regional conflagration. The U.S. fought the Gulf War and then left. No regional conflagration. Algeria fought an internal civil war for a decade. No regional conflagration.

I think it's worthwhile for proponents of withdrawal to be honest about the likely aftermath of pulling out: an intensified civil war that will take the lives of tens of thousands and end in the installation, at least in the short-term, of an Iran-friendly theocracy. This is obviously not a happy outcome, but neither is it the catastrophe the Chaos Hawks peddle. The alternative is to babysit the civil war with American troops, spilling blood and treasure along the way, without truly affecting the course of events in any substantial measure.

Politically, this is the key battleground now. As long as the Chaos Hawks are able to panic the public into believing that withdrawal will result in a Middle East in flames and ten dollar gasoline at home, no Congress will have the backbone to defund the war and force a pullout. This means that it's time for more sensible regional professionals to screw up their courage and tell the truth: pulling out won't be pretty, but if it's done prudently neither will it be Armageddon. The sooner we figure this out, the sooner we can leave Iraq.

I still have my doubts that it would be as bad as people are predicting. It's already so horrible I don't see how it could get all that much worse. However, I'm certainly willing to acknowledge it's a sobering possibility. But as Kevin notes at the end, "It's way past time for us to start formulating a sane national security policy for an age of terror. Leaving Iraq is the first step."

[cross-posted to The Reaction]

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Blogger Capt. Fogg said...

But the Commies followed us home after we pulled out of Vietnam and the lights of freedom went out all over the world too - just like they said, right?

Sure there was some chaos - which we could have avoided by a planned withdrawal, but communism is dying all by itself and that country is doing much better without us and the French.

7:57:00 PM  
Blogger Libby Spencer said...

Yeah I remember Fogg. Better dead than Red or something like that. Or was that from the cold war?

I don't know whether to be depressed that we're reliving the same mistakes again, or relieved to remember that we survived them.

9:26:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

speaking of pulling out today, "he's right on the war and that's it *" rock star Ron Paul will be on that new "oreilly factor" show tonight on the upstart FOX network. and giving an address on traditional american foreign policy of non intervention at neo con hellhole johns hopkins university tomoroww. 9/11/ 07. and don't think he gives a shit about that. He's 72 and knows how the world works

* if you are a ron paul supporter, such as I, you understand that it is actually the democrats who this description applies too.

11:00:00 AM  
Blogger Steve said...

Ron Paul!? Who's that?
With that name shouldn't he really be running for Pope? Though, for my own personal tastes, I'd hold out for Pope Lonelygirl the 15thrqlgwv

2:27:00 PM  

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