[Marxism] FW: [snow-news] A different voice for pulling out

David McDonald dbmcdonald at comcast.net
Tue May 4 13:35:30 MDT 2004

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From: quaker_lawyer at comcast.net [mailto:quaker_lawyer at comcast.net]
Sent: Tuesday, May 04, 2004 8:52 AM
To: snow-news at lists.riseup.net
Subject: [snow-news] A different voice for pulling out

May 10, 2004 issue
Copyright © 2004 The American Conservative

The Best of Bad Choices

Given the Iraq War’s mounting costs and impossible goals, America
should transfer sovereignty and come home.

By Christopher Layne

The administration’s Iraq policy is in shambles. Iraq has become a
geopolitical humpty-dumpty that America cannot put back together, and
the time has come for the United States to withdraw.

We now face a full-blown uprising against the occupation of Iraq.
Events plainly belie the administration’s spin that order will soon be
restored and that the revolt is just the work of a few Iraqi
extremists and a handful of terrorists from other Middle Eastern
states. Even top officials in the British government—America’s most
loyal ally—understand that the administration’s take on Iraq is
divorced from reality. As British Foreign Minister Jack Straw said,
“The lid on the pressure cooker has come off. There is no doubt that
the current situation is very serious and it is the most serious we
have faced. It plainly is the fact today that there are larger numbers
of people, and they are people on the ground, Iraqis, not foreign
fighters, who are engaged in this insurgency.” Americans should not
allow the administration’s “perception management” campaign—a fancy
bureaucratic term for lying—to pull the wool over their eyes.

>From a policy standpoint, an even greater concern is that the
administration believes its own disinformation about events in Iraq.
But there are three disturbing facts about the insurrection that
cannot be swept under the rug. First, what began as a small-scale
insurgency mounted by Sunni “dead-enders” and “former regime elements”
now has morphed into a broad-based popular rebellion joined by large
numbers of Shi’ites. The Shi’ite revolt is especially troubling
because—to the extent that the Bush II administration had any strategy
at all for administering postwar Iraq—it was based on the assumption
that the United States could co-opt the Shi’ites and gain their
support for Washington’s plans to create a “democratic” Iraq. Second,
Iraq’s Sunnis and Shi’ites —heretofore deeply antagonistic to each
other—now are finding common ground in resisting the occupation. Here
U.S. policy seems to be having a bitterly ironic and quite unintended
consequence. Previously, Iraq, which Britain artificially cobbled
together from the Ottoman Empire’s wreckage, lacked a sense of
national identity. Now, however, resentment of the American occupation
is creating an Iraqi nationalism shared by Sunnis and Shi’ites. Third,
outrage at America’s heavy-handed use of military power to suppress
the uprising has alienated the very Iraqis Washington has counted upon
to form the core of a new government to which “sovereignty” can be
transferred. Although they were handpicked by U.S. officials, leading
members of the Iraqi Governing Council now are condemning American
policy and distancing themselves from Washington.

Where does U.S. policy go from here? There are three options:
internationalizing the occupation, increasing U.S. troop strength and
cracking down hard on the insurgency, or withdrawal.

full: http://www.amconmag.com/2004_05_10/cover.html

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