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22 November 2005


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Pat there's nothing at the "All Things Considered" link.

W. Patrick Lang


Listen to the audio link. It works for me. pl

Michael Murry

I applaud any and all well-meaning efforts of the Iraqi people to settle their own differences. Good luck to the Iraqis. They have a lot of work to do crawling out of the pile of rubble and puddle of raw sewage that America has helped make of their country.

I still don't understand, however, why America thinks it can locate "the right people" and "draw them into" some sort of discussion about matters that do not concern America. As best I can remember, Iraq became a "sovereign" country well over a year ago -- at least if one can assume that words like "sovereign" contain an ounce of meaning one nanosecond after exiting the mouth of America's Orwellian Newspeaker of the moment. (Newsweek's Christopher Dickey long ago translated the obscene "sovereign" euphemism as "the blame," since "the situation on the ground had deteriorated" to the point where America simply had to transfer as much of it as possible to some appointed patsy puppets.) Anyway, how can America discuss anything with anyone after destroying the one human capacity -- language -- through anyone could agree upon anything?

I came across a trenchantly written article in the Washington Post today, that elegantly encapsulates America's self-inflicted dilemma -- a domestic political ordeal that has little, if anything, to do with what Iraqis want or think. Harold Meyerson wrote the piece, and he calls it: "An Exit Strategy in Search of a Party."


His two money quotes, in my estimation:

(1) "Nixon didn't so much argue the merits of staying the course in Vietnam -- nobody wanted to do that -- as inflame the sentiments of his 'silent majority' against war protesters and the Democrats who opposed the war, too."

(2) "The case for continuing our involvement grows increasingly absurd: In its latest iteration, we are there to prevent war between Shiite and Sunni, which looms, of course, only because we invaded Iraq in the first place. WE STAY [IN IRAQ] TO MITIGATE THE CONSEQUENCES OF OUR COMING [emphasis mine]. We've had wars in which our soldiers died for better causes than that."

Absolutely true on both counts. Nixon's "Vietnamization" (or "Yellowing the Corpes") policy had the same objective as Bush's "Iraqification" (or "Browning the Bodies") policy: namely, to attack domestic opposition to an unprofitable and unpopular executive branch war of choice in order to continue the war until its perpetrators can shift the political blame for it onto someone else. Once again, the only slippery-slope, mission-creeping, straw-grasping, after-the-fact rationale left for continuing the war nobody wants comes in the circular, self-referential, solipsistic, tautological viciously-downward-spiraling slogan: "We're here because we're here because we're here because we're here." We did something, and our having done it now justifies the interminable continuation of what we did. Nothing but pure political paralysis. Nothing but bureaucratic inertia in the driver's seat: with the Peter Principle and Parkinson's Law reiforcing each other with a vengeance. Nothing but the Lunatic Leviathan again run amok.

We've gone through this surreal insanity before. We don't need to go through it again. As Meyerson says, the American people have decided and now only await a political party to take responsibility -- and the nation's grateful credit -- for ending this damned disaster. The Iraqis, no doubt, will better know what to discuss and with whom to discuss it regarding matters of their own sovereignty.

J Thomas

"As the Sunnis get more involved in politics, Beals says, the US can more accurately identify Sunni leaders who have real clout in their communities."

So, what are we going to do to them after we identify them?

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