As much as I think I'm right about the Iraq War being the stupidest foreign policy decision made by the US since the War of 1812, I will gladly be wrong if it means time will magically spin backwards and prove George W. right.
I'm a category five on the mocking scale, but I'm naturally a good-hearted and earnest person. Therefore it hurts me when I hear Chimpy going on and on with these ever more grandiose visions of victory n' valor, of this romanticism, Mel Gibson's "Braveheart" version of war, whilst ignoring that depressing people dying, innocence destroyed, ultraviolence and cruelty = hearts hardened part.
Since Tuesday, clashes in Basra and throughout Iraq's Shiite heartland have left more than 100 dead and many wounded in Basra, Baghdad, Hilla, Kut, Karbala and Diwaniya.
Also Thursday, a U.S. government official was killed when militants fired rockets into the Green Zone, a spokesman for the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad said.
Casualty figures from Basra weren't available Thursday, but the number of deaths is expected to rise from the 40 to 50 that had been reported Wednesday.
In Baghdad on Thursday, dozens of gunmen kidnapped the spokesman of the Baghdad security plan, Tahseen Sheikhly. Three of his guards were killed and his house burned in the attack, which an Interior Ministry official said was carried out by "outlaws," a reference to al-Sadr's militia.
Also Thursday, a car bomb explosion killed three people and wounded five others near a police patrol in central Baghdad, an Interior Ministry official said. There are no apparent links to the violence in the Shiite regions.
Witnesses in Basra report smoke rising and gunfire and explosions ringing out across the city, where Iraqi security forces, backed by U.S. and British troops, have been taking on fighters using grenades, mortar rounds and machine guns.
Yet the optimism and perkiness remains. Every thing's shit-eatin'-grin-great! We're one one-hundred-year-long Bhutan Death March away from victory! It's just like that movie "Independence Day" where it took us three days to wipe out a superior race of intergalactic space terrorists ... only longer!
President Bush expressed sympathy Monday for the families of the 4,000 Americans killed in the war in Iraq, promising to make sure their loved ones "were not lost in vain."
"One day, people will look back at this moment in history and say, 'Thank God there were courageous people willing to serve, because they laid the foundations for peace for generations to come,' " Bush told reporters after a meeting at the State Department.
Is it because we haven't experienced a real war on our soil since the Civil War? Is that the reason for the disconnect? And I mean a real war. Where it involved more than buying yellow ribbons and storing up on K rations. A war that was felt by the whole and involved national pain and sacrifice, not the kind of sacrifice you get because you're willing to pay $4 for gas over $2. The kind where your life is dramatically altered in you physical reality, not just in your imagination. Where you actually are dealing with suicide bombings on a daily basis or hearing gunfire several times a day on city streets. Where you can't go to work because you're afraid you'll be kidnapped and held for ransom. Where you're afraid to go to church because you know that this week is the week they're shooting up Catholics or Baptists or Methodists or Unitarians or Jehovah's Witnesses.
Where you couldn't get clean water or food. Where the electricity doesn't work regularly and where no one has picked up the garbage in four years because if there were people to pick up the garbage that would mean life was something like normal.
You know? War war. The kind they've had a-plenty of times in all countries not us, Canada and Australia.
Is it because our noses are so far away from the bodies rotting in the street that we can just saunter around like every thing's Jim Dandy? That we can go to Chilis order the baby back ribs and a margarita the size of my head then regurgitate, waddle home to watch some celebrity sex tape internet porn, then fall asleep peacefully surrounded by our mint condition Star Wars collection figurines, Waumsutta 250-thread-count sheets and central air heating and cooling systems?
I know I'm preaching to the snarky choir on my blog as I haven't come across any war hawks yet, but I've been reading about signs of our crack Spackle of a surge suffering from fissures over the last two months that went unreported in the mainstream press - high turnover in the officer ranks of our military, funding cuts of cash for ex-insurgents, Great Britain declaring "Mission Accomplished" in the south and falling back to their garrison outside of Basra.
But even though I know something horrible is coming, I still don't want it to come. Four-thousand-plus dead isn't a number. Those are fathers and mothers, daughters and sons, sisters and brothers. They are, were people. And they matter. And I feel the same way about the Iraqi dead, which is up well into the 100,000s with many more millions displaced.
How much is this war's continuance not about fear, but all about ego? How much of this death cult action is habitual CYA by a cadre of the US population who just wants to get away with everything, without accountability, damn the process? And how do you make America safer against an enemy that doesn't need to be in Iraq to strike you? We're fighting terrorists, not a country. Al Qaida couldn't take Iraq even if it wanted to. Do the Bushies expect me to believe I am so dumb not to realize that Al Qaida didn't need Iraq to attack us in 2001 and doesn't need it to attack us now? The Shia nor the Sunni nor the Kurds like Al Qaeda. At least the three indigenous groups to Iraq can tell each other apart. They'd probably have an easier time of getting rid of Al Qaida. Oh wait, we learned that from the Surge. They are better at that than us.
Our problem is that we've fucked up things so bad that it would be both immoral for us to leave or stay and that's how the neocons like it. No one wants to be the grown up and deal with this thing responsibly. No one wants to make the hard decisions and sacrifices.
I hate to make comparisons to Adolf Hitler because people fling around his name around so bluntly you'd think he was born with hooves, but before D-Day if the Fuhrer had crunched his numbers and really thought about it, he would have eased up on the whole "rule the world" thing and just settled on ruling most of Europe. The US was really leery of getting involved, despite all the horror stories coming out of Europe. (Apparently the Republicans were something called "isolationists" back then.) Germany was a small country, it could only produce so many soldiers. They had the superior military and technology, but they shouldn't over extend themselves. Why invade Russia? Why threaten Great Britain or other countries outside of the Iberian Peninsula? The Fuhrer could wait for them.
But (yeah?) Hitler didn't care for listening to the "reality-based community" of his day.
I'm not saying Bush is Hitler because that would be an insult to Hitler. Hitler was an arrogant Theocrat who decided most white people weren't white enough. He was not a dumbass. George is an arrogant Theocrat and a dumbass.
He also could never be confused with a sadistic anti-Semite.
There's a difference!
And we're living it.
I just can't take it. Maybe George can watch this (or not watch it, if Condi doesn't say it, it can't be true!), but I give! What do you want? Stop holding the troops hostage. Do you want every military marriage to end in a funeral or divorce? What are we sacrificing for anymore? I'm sick of all the goal post moving, so what do I have to do to get you, George W., out of Iraq today? If I promise to not compare you to Hitler anymore, will you let the troops go? What if I let you read my emails for the rest of your life? What if I vote Republican for the next four elections? What if I vote for Ward Connerly's anti-Affirmative Action initiative?
What I agree to not complain as loudly about our country's racist heritage? What if I write a book proclaiming how you really are the John Wayne/Rambo character that only exists in your mind? What if I wrote that you, George W., wrote the Constitution, won the Civil War, beat the Nazis, the Japanese and the Koreans, that you brought down the Iron Curtain, reunited Europe, bartered the Oslo Peace Accords and made nuclear weapons turn to sunshine and made Skittles rain all across the Middle East as all the peoples of the world turned on their iPods, put on their Budweiser T-shirts, lit up a Marlboro and held hands from Tippecanoe to Uzbekistan singing in perfect American accented English "I'm Proud to Be An American Because At Least I know I'm Free!"
Would you acquiesce then? I am a defeatist, just like you said. That's the difference between you and me.
I'm willing to let you be right rather than watch Solomon chop our troops in half for the sake of your shattered legacy.
I promise. I'll carve you up on Rushmore myself with my fingernails.