- Peace Garden: To my Friend...

To my Friend...

Friday, October 24, 2008

... who spouted about the "success" in Iraq. Some more exmaples of how wrong the use of the word "success" is:
What the Good News from Iraq Really Means
Today, however, success in Iraq seems as elusive as ever for the President. The Iraqi cabinet is now refusing, without further amendment, to pass on to Parliament the status of forces agreement for stationing US troops in the country that it's taken so many months for American and Iraqi negotiators to sort out. Key objections, as Juan Cole points out at his Informed Comment blog, have come from the Islamic Supreme Council of Iraq, which is [Prime Minister Nouri] al-Maliki's chief political partner, the support of which he would need to get the draft through parliament." That party, Cole adds tellingly, "is close to Tehran, which objects to the agreement." The Iranian veto? Hmmm? Among Iraqis, according to the Dreyfuss Report, only the Kurds, whose territories house no significant US forces, remain unequivocally in favor of the agreement as written. Frustrated American officials, including Ambassador Ryan Crocker ("Without legal authority to operate, we do not operate? That means no security operations, no logistics, no training, no support for Iraqis on the borders, no nothing?"), Secretary of Defense Robert Gates ("Without a new legal agreement,'we basically stop doing anything' in the country?"), and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Mike Mullen ("We are clearly running out of time?") are huffing and puffing, and threatening – if the agreement is not passed as is – to blow the house down.
Even if Washington prefers to ignore Iraqi realities, military officials working close to the ground know that the country's state of disrepair, and an inability to deal with it in any reasonably prompt way, leaves a population in steaming discontent. At any moment, this could explode in further sectarian violence or yet another violent effort to expel the US forces from the country.
We went in, destroyed, pitted one against another, failed to rebuild... and we wonder why people don't like our policies.

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