Monday, October 15, 2007

This is How the Pullout Will Be Sold

Not unlike the US pullout from Viet Nam, the Bush administration will yell, “We won”, and start withdrawing troops. This morning’s Washington Post reports: “The U.S. military believes it has dealt devastating and perhaps irreversible blows to al-Qaeda in Iraq in recent months, leading some generals to advocate a declaration of victory over the group, which the Bush administration has long described as the most lethal U.S. adversary in Iraq.” As far as Iraq is concerned, the White House, Pentagon and US military have never been concerned about whether their version of events was based on fact or fiction. Whether, indeed, the US has delivered irreversible blows to al-Qaeda, or delivered no blows at all is not the point. The White House will sell the story that “the most lethal U.S. adversary in Iraq” has been vanquished. And then the Bush administration's bought-and-paid-for generals will “advocate a declaration of victory”. And the Bush administration has saved face. Which is what our staying in Iraq has been about. The same White House that doesn’t give a rat’s ass about seeing to it that children receive proper medical care, also does not give a rat’s ass about the devastation the Bush regime has visited on the Iraqi people. Nor has this WH ever cared about bringing freedom and democracy to the Iraqi people. It’s all about selling the Bush administration’s version of events. WaPo pointed out that many generals, analysts and US officials are saying that claiming victory over al-Qaeda in Iraq is premature. One senior US official, “who declined even to be identified by the agency he works for said ‘the data are insufficient and difficult to measure’.” But that is hardly the point. The White House version of events that will signal a major pullout of troops from Iraq has now started. And do not for one minute imagine that Dick Cheney will allow those troops to come home. No. They will be redeployed to Afghanistan to a war that is not carrying as much negative baggage as Cheney and George W. Bush’s war in Iraq. WaPo claims “The expanded presence of U.S. troops in combat outposts in many parts of Baghdad has also put pressure on AQI (WH code for al-Qaeda 1, since there are other al-Qaeda presences in other parts of the world), but a major test of gains against the organization will come when the U.S. military begins to turn security in those areas over to Iraqi forces next year.” That is not really the major test. The major test will be if and when the US is forced to pull Blackwater USA thugs out of Iraq. We have 168,000 Blackwater mercenaries fighting alongside our troops in Iraq. Should the Iraqi’s suit against Blackwater for wanton murder of Iraqis force the US to end its unholy alliance with Blackwater, the US will no longer be able to even float the fiction that the US military is winning or holding its own in Iraq. WaPo’s tagline tells the whole story about the Bush administration’s war in Iraq. WaPo says: “While a victory declaration might have the ‘psychological aspect’ of discouraging recruitment to a perceived lost cause, the White House official said, advantages overall would be minimal. ‘I recognize that there are pros to saying, “Hey, listen, the bad guys are on the run.” ‘But if AQI were later able to demonstrate residual capabilities with a series of bombings, even though it was temporary, the question becomes: How does this play out in terms of public opinion?’” Oh yes! Isn’t that the main point? Screw the Iraqis, screw all our soldiers dead and alive in Iraq, screw the American people who will pay for this Republican temper tantrum called the War in Iraq for the foreseeable future. The point is: HOW DOES THIS PLAY OUT FOR THE BUSH ADMINISTRATION IN TERMS OF PUBLIC OPINION?

1 comment:

Todd Dugdale said...

AS usual, Bush is only speaking to his 29%, who will believe anything. The rest of the country already knows that Iraq is a disaster; they just want out. This is what Britain is doing already, and it's "working" in terms of domestic consumption. The British public is not swelling with pride over "victory", but rather sighing with relief that they now only have the Afghan disaster to contend with.

Obviously, the Iraqi forces cannot take over control. Nothing has changed with their status in the past year, so if they can take over now, why could they not have done this a year ago?

Likewise, the "drawdown" story is a sham, as the number of American troops in Iraq will remain nearly constant.