I wonder, whether in the history of mankind, there has ever been such a massive failure in making peace than has been managed in Iraq.
I get really tired of people saying the US is "losing the war". They're not. In fact, the war was over pretty much right around the time George Bush landed on that aircraft carrier and declared "mission accomplished." Had the mission been to rid Iraq of a murderous, thieving thug who threatened his own people and his country's immediate neighbours, Bush would have been right. Getting rid of Saddam was as easy as giving your cat a flea bath - sure, you might end up with a scratch or two, but there's little question the cat will end up in the bath.
What the US is losing is the peace. Despite the millions of intelligent words that have been written about the Islamic mindset and the way the Arab world works, Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld et al. figured they knew better. They, apparently, never read Bernard Lewis or Christopher Hitchens or Briggitte Gabriel or Daniel Pipes or Walid Shoebat or dozens of others (sadly, one has to wonder if some members of the US administration have even heard of those people).
(This is not a screed about bashing the US because I believe the US remains one of the few really decent places on Earth. It's not a screed about bashing Bush because, sadly, he was better than the alternative. And, it's not a screed about Muslims, either, because, generally speaking, I only have a problem with the ones who want to saw my head off and convert my children.)
Anyway, had someone in the Bush administration bothered reading any of these or others who have actually studied or lived in the Arab world, they would have realized the one thing that works is overpowering, respect-inspiring force.
Instead, we've seen a mish mash of rebuilding bullshit that included letting people like al-Sadr and al-Zarqawi run amok for months and years rather than killing them because it might have hurt a few bricks on a mosque. This has totally emboldened other US-hating Arab nations like Iran and Syria because they don't believe the US or anyone else in the western world has the balls to take them on if it means filling some body bags. Sadly, people die in war - soldiers and innocents alike - and if you don't want anyone to die in war then you better not ever, ever, ever go to war.
3,000 American soldiers have now died in Iraq which sounds like a lot. It is a lot of people but it is not a heavy casualty count for a war. It sucks that 10s of thousands of Iraqis are dying because the coalition won't commit to the heavy work of wiping out the terrorist fucks who are blowing shit up all over the place. It sucks that the world community won't deal with Iran and other rogue nations. It will really suck if the US cuts-and-runs and renders those American deaths completely pointless.
Anyway, the US made another mistake in "bringing" Saddam "to justice". The soldiers who found him in his hidey-hole should have tossed a couple of grenades in and walked away. Or, if they absolutely had to have, out of some misplaced sense of right and wrong, apprehended him and take him in, the US should absolutely have insisted he not be sentenced to death.
Now, Saddam will be a martyr and the terrorists will have another reason to blow shit up and thousands more innocents will die while the coalition countries wonder why they can't get the situation under control.
A first class SNAFU all the way around...
Makes you wonder what Hillary Clinton can do to top it if she, God forbid, becomes President.