John McCain yesterday said that he would “Bring our troops home in Victory” as opposed to Senator Obama, whom he says will simply bring them home precipitously, and seemingly therefore, in defeat, by Mr. McCain’s comments.
I think that’s great, I think we should declare victory, and leave.
There is nothing further to be gained by our presence, unless you want to justify a permanent military presence. The Iraqis want us out, on a firm timetable, as does Senator Obama, so Obama is aligned with the sentiments of the legitimately elected government, where Senator McCain is not. Senator McCain claims if we leave too early, we will only have to return, instead, we must assure ‘victory’, of course, he doesn’t describe that ‘victory’, nor has he ever, in detail.
So if this is about covering ourselves in glory, then I say we say we’ve won, and come home. The solution necessary now is for the Iraqis to make peace internally, between the Shiaa and Sunni, between the Kurds and the Sunni, and externally between Iraq and Iran. Our presence does little but inflame and complicate the situation.
As Richard Nixon did in 1975, we should simply say we’ve won, and leave – knowing full well, in this case, however, that China and Soviet sponsored client states are NOT about to topple the Iraqi government. The only way that government will fall is if the Iraqi PEOPLE decide it is illegitimate and replace it, and they cannot make that decision, or take that action, while we are there. More than that, they cannot get on with the process of rebuilding their nation – the process of reconciliation – while we create artificial prisons with our concrete walls. That ‘reconciliation’ may be violent, or hopefully, it will be peaceful, but there is nothing our troops are going to do today, or in 50 years, which will make it be any different, and our return would be unwelcome, unnecessary, and unproductive.
The other truth is simply this, Mr. McCain has only one note to sing, he constantly yammers about ‘the surge working’ and that Mr. Obama, based on all good information at the time, opposed it. The ‘surge’ worked obliquely, was counter to better information (like say, ignoring better information about WMD), and is the first thing in five years of action in Iraq that Mr. McCain can claim he was right about. Conversely, Obama was right and Mr. McCain was wrong about – WMD, the reasons for invasion, the way to handle the occupation, the number of troops, the conduct of the CPA, the need to investigate the CPA, the reality and impact of Abu Ghraib, the need to investigate same, the conduct and control over our ‘contractors’, the cost of the war, the length of the war, the ability of the Iraqi’s to pay for the war, the competence of Tommy Franks, the truths told by General after General about what was going on and how to fight the war, and finally TA DA, the tactic/strategy advocated by Gen. Patraeus which Senator McCain, by backing Tommy Franks, initially rejected as molly-coddling.
Bottom line is this, this interference in a civil war is a war which is not worthy of the presence of our troops for one day longer. We help to save lives, to be sure, but we cannot prevent the ultimate reconciliation and work Iraq must do for itself, they know it, Obama knows it, I suspect the American people know it, I just wonder just like he was ignorant/oblivious to the realities of the fact that we helped create and exacerbate the ‘insurgency’ through our hubris, and then ultimately changed only due to political pressure, when Senator McCain will ‘get it’ too.