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June 22, 2005

Honesty About Iraq

The author of the satirical "send your son to Iraq" letter has a new posting today that is wonderful:

We need to be honest here: Iraq is not worth one more dead American.

People on the right and left want some deus ex machina to save Iraq, but we have., collectively, come to a simple conclusion:

Iraq is not worth dying for. Not for the warmongers on the right or the liberal hawks on the left.

[...]

What I want people to do is be honest.

If you will not serve in Iraq, and no one you know will serve, stop expecting someone else to do what you will not.

Therefore, it is time to stop calling for more troops, or the US to make Iraq safe. We cannot do this and even Americans are refusing to join the fight. It is time to look at your actions and realize, that despite your ideals, you oppose continuing this war. In practical terms, you have decided that this war is not worth your life or anyone you know. And million of Americans have joined you in this decision.

So, with this fact evident, it is time to call for US troops to withdraw from Iraq. Not save it, not add more boots on the ground. You have already voted by your actions. It is time that you match it with your words.

This is an honest argument, and it is much harder to oppose than the "send your kids" argument, because everyone knows the "send your kids" argument is bullshit. No one is ever going to say, "Gosh, I see your point. Billy? I'm signing you up for Iraq."

So well done to Steve Gilliard - and kos, who suprises me by declaring that the debate is over - for bringing honesty back into their side of the debate.

I say, don't enlist and don't continue for as long as we have this stupid Iraq policy. But I also think that a pull-out could be disastrous as well. I read this diary over at dkos today, about the opinions of historian, middle east expert, and progressive blogger Juan Cole, and found it very convincing.

I have been unable to convince many of my readers of what I know.  A US withdrawal could well throw Iraq into civil war.  Civil war in Iraq would bring in the Iranians, the Saudis and the Turks.  The success of petroleum pipeline sabotage and refinery sabotage in Iraq will suggest it as a tactic to the guerrillas fighting in this Fourth Gulf War.

If Saudi and Iranian petroleum production is sabotaged, gas in this country will go to $20 a gallon and the US will be plunged into the Second Great Depression. The unemployment rate will skyrocket to some 25%.  Not only will you and I likely end up unemployed, but the global South will be de-industrialized. Countries making progress like India and Pakistan will be thrown back 30 years.

Cole believes this is solvable by involving UN troops with troops from the "global South", which I believe means south-of-Europe countries - rewarding them with Iraqi contracts. It's compelling. Go read.

So yes - as long as we aren't solving any problems, we might as well pull out. But there might still be ways to solve the problem. I hope that the Democratic and progressive mindset will continue to evolve to embrace some of these possible solutions.

Posted by tunesmith at June 22, 2005 04:48 PM

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