Tuesday, November 14, 2006
We don' need no stinkin' plan, so heres mine!
Given access to the daily Republican talking point session, it is obvious that one of the major points being distributed for media consumption goes like this: "Democrats do not have a plan for Iraq! No plan, no plan, Democrats = no plan for Iraq. Totally planless... no plan Democrat no plan Iraq Democrat no plan". Or something like that.
First why the heck is it that Democrats are expected to suddenly have the solution to the Iraqi quagmire? This logic is similar to a pedestrian on a busy sidewalk looking in on a chess game. As the game proceeds the player of the white pieces develops a horrible strategy, mistakenly gives away pieces, and winds up in an untenable position. That player then accosts the bystander to come up with a plan for White to win, and tries to cast aspersions on the bystanders chess playing ability when the impossible answer is not forthcoming.
Democrats had next to no say in the implementation of this policy. The (Republican) administration has gotten itself into a situation that really has no good solutions. Now it is up to Democrats to figure this out? Please.
But wait. Friky has a solution for you. This solution is in the context of the overall war on terror. (I understand this term is not exactly accurate for the struggle we find ourselves in, but it is commonly accepted and used) I don't think Bushco will like my plan but here it is.
My plan in the war on terror is to admit our mistakes and correct them. The Iraq war is a drain and diversion from our cause in the war on terror. Many times in the past I have affirmed my belief in the absolute necessity for liberal western type democracy to win this struggle.
There is a military component to the war on terror, but where there is no military component, one ought not be created. The military aspect of this war was and is the war in Afghanistan.
I propose that we redeploy from Iraq. We deploy a rapid response force in a friendly neighboring country that will have them (Kuwait and or Turkey) to deal with any possible emerging threats from Iraq that develop on a case by case basis.
We should move at least half the force currently being chewed up in Iraq into Afghanistan. We ought to fight the true military front in the war on terror with a will to win it. There is strong bipartisan support for success in this theater. We should also take a portion of the billions currently being tossed into the black hole of Iraq and use that money to begin the reconstruction and modernization of Afghanistan. A modernized Afghanistan which still honors it's Muslim heritage would be a tremendous success in this war. Afghanistan is the nation that we ought to be talking about standing up and standing down, fighting them there so we don't have to fight them here and so on. Those talking points are childish in their logic, but the grain of truth from which they are built in no way applies to Iraq.
This would also free up resources and good will in the international community which is very needed for the other side of the war on terror. The diplomatic and law enforcement side of the issue. We need international good will to succeed in this, and we have frittered it away in Iraq and with our detainee policy. We need to stop the bleeding forthwith and begin to repair these relationships. We need to demonstrate that we are the good guys in this fight by doing what is right, and fighting for what America has always stood for. Close Guantanamo. Prove our case against terrorists when we can with fair trials. Apologize to the world because we have tortured and make clear with verifiable methods that we will stop the practice. These actions have no bearing in a military sense, but are politically necessary to begin to win the war on terror.
Until we begin down this road of correcting our mistakes in this struggle we will continue a fruitless effort, devoid of any but a few die hard allies, as the rest of the world sits on the sidelines watching as we blunder about.
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