Friday, November 17, 2006

holy god....

The Right is very split on Iraq. Krauthammer's Blame the Iraqis I just commented on is on the NationalReview site.

On the same site is this depressed Mona Charen piece on everything being the US fault--a lack of willpower.

America is the world’s hyperpower. No other nation or group of nations can challenge us militarily or economically. Unlike sickly Europe, we are growing, not contracting. But we are about to be defeated in Iraq by a few thousand cutthroats. How did this happen? It’s simple: The only thing powerful enough to defeat us is ourselves, and we’ve done it.

That first line is the exact lie that got us in this situation in the first place. The US might be the top power in the world but it is not a hyper-power that can impose its will on anyone, anytime. Only military as destroying states, but not as Iraq and Afghanistan have showed, stabilization. We can not fight counterinsurgencies with the current military setup.

A few thousand cutthroats? A few thousand? The insurgency has likely been as high as 100,000. The militias run the country. Hardly insane defeatist cutthroats. We are talking about highly skilled guerilla warriors. As Fareed Zakaria said this view is that Iraq is a state of mind and since we think we are losing, we are. Hence if we just buck up our determination and change or thinking (paging Norman Vincent Peale), Iraq will be victorious.

But what about Krauthammer's argument that the Iraqis don't want a republic and America can't force on them what they don't want.

Here's Mona again:

The rumors circulating about the commission’s report, due next month, suggest that co-chairs James Baker III and former Rep. Lee Hamilton will recommend a “grand bargain” among the warring factions in Iraq and enlist the cooperation of Iraq’s neighbors in pacifying the country.Iraq’s neighbors? Iran and Syria? The nations that are bankrolling and supplying the internecine violence? The nations that are the world’s top sponsors of terror? Iran: the nation that boasts of its genocidal ambitions toward Israel and the United States even as it races — against the express wishes of the entire civilized world — to obtain nuclear weapons? The nations that have the most to gain from our failure?Why hasn’t this approach been tried before? When we were having trouble in Bosnia, why didn’t we ask for help from neighborly Serbia?

The only alternative to the surrenders on offer by the Democrats and by the “realist” Republicans is a renewed determination to win. The assassins in Iraq pursue their dirty war despite the cost because it is succeeding. They know they are on the cusp of driving us out. But if, just to fantasize for a moment, we were to redouble our efforts, send more troops, kill the insurgents and convey our unflinching determination to win, the psychological effect would be enormous. And all wars are, to one degree or another, psychological.

Wow. Did anybody tell her that the issue for more than a year now has been the civil war and not the insurgency? The insurgency is just a front for Sunni offense/defense and protection. And that as Krauthammer has said, the Shia do not want us there anymore and want to fight it out with the Sunni.


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