"It ''remains to be seen where we'll be in September.'' --Defense Secretary Gates, June 15, 2007
George Bush said yesterday, in a desperate defense of his escalating fiasco, that pulling out of Iraq "would be a disaster."
The "job" that Bush says he wants "done" before he will agree to end the occupation and recent siege of Iraqi neighborhoods by our escalating forces, is a political pipe dream; a fantasy which relies on the prospect that some initiative or law which manages to pass through the fractured Iraqi legislature would somehow make the propped-up regime more secure, and end the struggle for power and territory which is raging between the myriads of factions and sects involved in Iraq's civil war.
The argument for keeping our troops in the middle of all of the chaos has been reduced to the same manufactured script which the Bush administration has used to justify every grab for the false authority they have assumed since the 9-11 attacks. In the rhetoric which followed the recent bombing of the shrine in Samarra, there was the usual bandying-about of their sophistry that it's al-Qaeda who has set the Shia and the Sunni against each other. Bush issued a written appeal to Iraqis to "avoid acts of vengeance" in the wake of the shrine bombings. Al-Qaeda, he said, "is trying to "sow hatred" among Iraqis, and he called on them to join him in the fight against Iraq's "true enemies."
However, there was no recognition at all from Bush of the decades of animosity between the dozens of Iraqi factions; no recognition of the destabilizing effect of the invasion and overthrow of the U.S. supported, Batthist sympathizer Saddam; no acknowledgment of the repressive effect of the U.S. forces acting along with the Shiite-dominated regime as they operate against communities in opposition to their skewed authority. Bush wants Iraqis to imitate him in his elevation of those in Iraq who've taken on the moniker of the 9-11 suspects he's let run free for five years in Afghanistan, to the position of a universal 'enemy' on which to divert their anger at our own devastating theft and destruction of their country.
An 'oil law' and some form of 'Batthist reconciliation' are the initiatives which have been presented by the administration as critical to their declaring some sort of 'success' in their increased occupation. Defense Secretary Gates sneaked into Iraq today to try and goad the vacationing Iraqi regime into getting on with the two political goals that Bush claims would end the violent struggles for power if enacted. Gates said in a statement he would tell the Iraqi regime that, " . . . our troops are buying them time to pursue reconciliation, that frankly we are disappointed with the progress so far."
It's not the first time that representatives from the Bush cabal have traveled to Baghdad to cluck their tongues in disappointment and disgust at the inability or unwillingness of the Iraqi government to enact these two initiatives which would, somehow, magically transform all of the resistance into a Kumbaya moment of surrender to the new regime's U.S.-enabled authority over them.
Behind the admonitions of Defense chief Gates stand 160,000 U.S. troops who, he announced, represent the completion of the 'surge' of the additional 30,000 Bush has ordered deployed into the middle of Iraq's civil war-zone. "Buying time" is the euphemism Gates used to describe the sacrifices of American military in defense of the new Iraqi regime, who have lost over 3500 soldiers since the invasion, and, last month, suffered the third worst period for U.S. military deaths, totaling 126 killed. And, both Gates and his commander, Bush, have forecast an even greater loss of American lives, admittedly a direct result of the escalation of forces.
The "disaster" Bush is warning of, which he says would come about if we withdrew from Iraq - a disaster, which is the perfect description of his fiasco so far - has already befallen our troops, and by extension, our own national interest. It is an amazing tragedy that the president and his party are so willing to sacrifice American lives for their politics; packing our nation's defenders into the middle of an active civil war, waiting for some political maneuvering from their junta to take place before they agree to bring them home.
If their justification for the continued deployment is about our national security, then they've failed Iraq, and our nation as well, as the destabilizing presence of our forces is the most pernicious influence - cited by his own intelligence agencies - fueling "jihad," and drawing even more Iraqis and others to engage in violent resistance to the increased U.S. occupation. If there is a universal enemy in Iraq, as Bush would like us to regard 'al-Qaeda,' it is our own muckraking military force. Even as Iraqis take up arms against the foreign influence of those associating themselves with the fugitive 9-11 suspects, they are also united against the obvious intrusion of our own invading army. Whatever profit the Bushies got out of Iraq is not what's keeping republicans and Bush from withdrawing. It's the prospect that they'll have to admit their venture was a failure for the very reasons they used to take us there and keep our troops bogged down there. If there's one thing Bush and his republicans are more concerned with than money, it's their political ego. And, their lies about Iraq have caught up with them. No more bluffing that more troops would produce anything Bush could call a 'success' out of his fiasco. The escalation is complete and all he and his generals have managed to accomplish is to dig us even deeper into the muck.
It's a wonder to hear Gates threatening the Iraqi regime with the prospected deaths of our soldiers, as if Iraqis actually cared to notice the 3500 Americans killed among the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis lost in the chaos. All of the 'reinforcements' Bush and his generals claimed were needed for their 'success' are now in place in Iraq. Now that the depth of their hollow lie about the 'stabilizing' effect of that escalation is apparent, the Bush cabal is desperate to delay the judgment of the 'success' of their costly deployment.
However, the premise behind the escalation was a false one; cobbled from the verdict of the Iraq Study Group who warned about taking their call for a 'temporary surge' of forces in isolation from the entirety of recommendations in their report. The predictable effect of Bush's swaggering escalation has been a standard reaction to a bully pushing his weight around in a rival's home-turf. Bush presumed that the mere intimidation of 160,000 U.S. troops ensconced in Iraqi neighborhoods would cause the country of millions to fold and bend to his militaristic imperialism. Instead, his escalation of U.S. forces has resulted in an obligatory increase in resistance. And, in the midst of it all, he wants his bully regime to press for 'reconciliation.'
He'd have a better chance of achieving 'reconciliation' by using our forces to dismantle the obstinate regime he's cynically created, and bring them out of Iraq along with our own beleaguered troops. If he could manage that, he'd have eliminated at least one of Iraq's enemies; maybe more than one if we're to accept that it's now their own propped-up puppets who are standing in the way of the political reforms the administration claims our troops are there to facilitate with their continued sacrifices.