The Commonwealth of Virginia's Ultimate Blog

Monday, March 20, 2006

McCain- The Only Alternative on Iraq?

Inspired by OZ's post, it's occurred to me recently that there's only a semantic difference between the President's position on Iraq, and that of his toughest critics. The Honorable John Murtha and most Democrats in Congress call for the announcement of a timetable of withdrawal, but usually leave plenty of room for the extension of that timetable. The President and most Republicans (rightly) refuse to announce a timetable, but end up frequently dropping hints and clues as to how long they are planning to stay.

But not John McCain. The only guy who isn't calling for a draw-down in '06, lays out his Iraq strategy fairly well in this October 2005 op-ed.
If there's one reason I can overcome the pain in my stomach I feel everytime I hears someone say "Bick-Rah" (Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act, which is next only to the Alien and Sedition Act in terms of rank heinosity) it's that he may be the strongest, clearest, voice on Iraq.


Blogger Virginia Centrist said...

Ehhh. I haven't really heard anyone verbalize my own opinion:

1. It's hopeless. And yet, we're only losing a few men a day. Why not stay and try to beat the 9-1 odds?
2. Does our presence inflame things or help keep order? Or both? Jesus, I don't know, and no one else does either.

Leaving is rolling the dice.

Staying is costly ($$$) but not terribly costly in blood.

Will this country ever coalesce into a working government? No. No serious person can tell you at this point that these people won't be blowing each other up with REALLY BIG BOMBS within the next 5 years.

So there's my answer. It's hopeless. And yet: blah.

10:03 PM

Blogger James Atticus Bowden said...

I wrote "The Long Hard Peace" during major combat ops in 03.

Rumsfeld should have been fired in 03 for not knowing what war he was getting into. He planned for withdrawal to start at 90 days after endex on major ops.

Unfortunately, Pres. Bush didn't know - not a surprise - and Cheney, apparently, didn't either. Not good. Too bad they didn't listen the Army Chief of Staff they couldn't stand.

The good news is that John Abizaid is there as the Regional Combatant Commander. Best fit since MacArthur was in post war Japan.

The bad news is the Wilsonian rhetoric of Bush/Rice is way overblown. If a democracy, equal to that of England after the Magna Charta, happens - then nice. If more a modern democratic state with freedoms closer to ours - rule of law, individual rights,freedom of religion, speech etc, better, but don't bet on it.

Simply taking out Saddam was a plus. Building anything that approaches a secure and stable, non-threatening, power in the ME is good enough - whether it lasts for a year or 100 years. We can't control what the Iraqis choose for their destiny.

Define victory and you can see if we will achieve it. I've written several pieces a year on this -

Border wars on the frontiers of civilization are long, tedious affairs.

10:52 PM


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