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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Iraq - Like Every Other American War

The Wall Street Journal hits on a point that's been rattling around in my head for some time.

But like Lincoln in the Civil War and FDR in World War II, Mr. Bush eventually found the right men and the right strategy in Iraq.

Indeed, this is a recurring pattern in the wars of the English-speaking peoples.  As Churchill (Peace Be Upon Him) himself once said:

The late M. Venizelos observed that in all her wars England -- he should have said Britain, of course -- always wins one battle -- the last.

The military establishments which exist in peacetime are ill-suited for war-fighting.  They tend to promote bureaucrats and time-servers to the highest ranks.  Indeed, the lack of absolute commitment to the war has, in this particular case, impeded the necessary house-cleaning in a number of departments and areas but, in the most critical - the forces in the field in Iraq - it seems to have occurred.

Posted by Adam T. Yoshida on April 23, 2008 in International Affairs | Permalink


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LOL! Yoshida thinks a miserable defeat in Iraq at the hands of peasants armed with home made weapons can be sold to Americans and Canadians as a victory! LOL!

Yoshida, America lost the war in Iraq a long time ago! It is all about trying to save face now! Iraqis are preparing for the civil war to come. Iran, the great winner of the overthrow of Saddam, gets stronger everyday and has over 150,000 American sitting ducks in Iraq as hostages! LOL! Nice huh. Idiot.

Posted by: ROGER | 2008-04-24 12:23:54 AM

A brief look at history shows that Britain was punted out of America and India by force. Britain LOST those last battles. They'll lose this one too.

Posted by: abc | 2008-04-24 9:33:01 AM

Chunky Monkey,

I assume you are referring to the Surge?

Explain how it has brought 'victory' to Iraq? Or will for that matter.

In fact, explain what 'victory' in Iraq would look like? I don’t see the Bush Administration as having a realizable goal in Iraq, prove me wrong please. In fact, forget ‘realizable’, what is the goal in Iraq? Is there one.

How does bolstering Iraq’s current, pro-Iranian government against al Sadr's nationalistic, less pro-Iranian movement equal victory? Or, paying off Sunni militias or dividing Baghdad into ethnic enclaves having minimal contact with the other and secured behind 20 foot high, concrete blast walls. Everywhere one looks in Iraq one sees disastrous, catastrophic failure.

I guess one could regard the surge a victory if one’s primary interest was rhetorical. It is a political success because it gives the Bush Administration an excuse to ignore the consequences of its own folly. It lends what are deeply negative trends a positive veneer.

I have to ask: was your mum a drinker? Your photo displays traces of foetal alcohol syndrome.

By the way: Norway, Cyprus, not to mention his time as First Sea Lord … what’s with the Churchill worship?

Posted by: Feces Eating Buddha | 2008-04-24 11:59:19 AM


It's also odd that a 24 or 25-year-old who is the self-declared most right-wing person in Canada worships a man who once said, "If a man is not a socialist by the time he is 20, he has no heart." Churchill was right, at least about Yoshida, anyway.

Posted by: Fact Check | 2008-04-24 12:10:59 PM

“ ... and if a man is STILL a socialist when he's 30, he has no brain."

Perhaps Yoshida is a bit more mature that you, or at least understands that there's no wavering once a rational human being understands that no form of socialism (marixst or National), there's no changing your mind.

Compassion, BTW, is a responsibility best left to the individual and Churchill's comments are as much a call for responsible conduct and the folly of the young heart which cries out ‘the government should do something about (fill in the blank)."

Posted by: set you free | 2008-04-24 12:17:46 PM

"Iraq - Like Every Other American War"

Adam, for once I agree with you. Iraq is, like every other American war, except for the American Revolution and the War for Southern Independence, unjustifiable.

Posted by: Kalim Kassam | 2008-04-24 12:29:54 PM

Chunky Monkey has a learning disability.

How else could he achieve a prose style so tortured it pains you to read it?

Posted by: Feces Eating Buddha | 2008-04-24 12:55:17 PM

1) ABC - Britain was not driven from India by force. Far from it. It quit India of its own free will, because it was exhausted after the Second World War. Repeated attempts to drive the British out failed - and would have failed post-WW2 if Britain had desired to stay.

I will leave the assessment of the wisdom of the British decision to leave for another day.

The American Revolution hardly counts, given that it was, for all intents and purposes, a British Civil War.

2) I don't know exactly why I am supposed to take seriously or be hurt by the remarks of a man going under the name "Feces Eating Buddha" so I shall not.


Now, victory in Iraq is the establishment of a stable, non-terrorist supporting, relatively free government in the heart of the Middle East. That is exactly what has happened. One by one, the challenges to the Iraqi Government have been seen off - to the point where no serious challenge to its authority exists.

None, at least, that is likely to result in the removal of that government. That is a remarkable achivement and a very desirable one - because it can serve as a model for the future transformation of the Moslem world.

Iraq isn't perfect - but it is an acceptable Third Way. We can live with an Islamic world full of Iraqs.

After all, as I've been telling people for years - especially my fellow conservatives who object to the 'nation-building' aspect of this - the choice is not between war in Iraq and no war. The choice is between limited war to destroy the most odious regimes and create acceptable successors now and an all-out genocidal war between the West and a surging Islam a decade or two hence.

Those, after 9-11, were the long-range alternatives. Either we confront Jihadism now, do battle with it, and direcredit it in a long, bloody, and drawn-out series of anti-insurgent campaigns or we wait until the Jihadists have enslaved peoples, nations, and civilizations and we fight them in pitched all-out battles against their own tanks, submarines, missiles, bombers, and nukes.

Posted by: Adam Yoshida | 2008-04-24 1:28:45 PM

There you go Adam. In military terms its called "Forward Defense".

Posted by: DML | 2008-04-24 8:47:01 PM

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