Friday, August 24, 2007


Along with all the attempts to spin reports on Iraq, there's a repeated trend to assign blame for the failures. The 2 most frequent scapegoats appear to be Nouri al-Maliki and Iran. Our shrub would never admit that Iraq has been his failure, so he's assigning the problem to others.

Yesterday, I posted at length on how shaky al-Maliki's position is, but it's not his fault. The entire premise that Iraq would unify under a single, pro-American leader is simply ridiculous. Last months "progress" report graded al-Maliki as "not having met 18 benchmarks", but didn't address the validity of those benchmarks. These goals are America's goals for Iraq, not Iraqi's goals for Iraq. As long as Iraqi's percieve al-Maliki as an American puppet he cannot stabilize Iraq. No leader can. Anybody who becomes leader of Iraq as an American choice will fail.

The other target for repeated blame is Iran. If you believe the media, our soldiers are being killed by only 2 groups: al-Qaeda and the Iranians. While it's true that Iran is involved in Iraq (hey, they're neighbors), the Iranians have been supporting the same Shia parties that support al-Maliki. Given the long history of confrontation between America and Iran, it should come as no surprise that they oppose our occupation of their neighbor. But the Iranians are not to blame for our failed occupation.
The reason that our occupation is failing and will continue to fail is that it was begun on a fatally flawed premise: that we could turn Iraq into a pro-American client state. The reality is that the middle east has resisted foreign occupation throughout history. They will continue to resist.
This war was doomed to fail from the beginning. We will withdraw at some point, because the occupation will become unsustainable. The only question is how much blood it will take to convince our leaders to withdraw.
And those same "talkers" will blame the scapegoats. It was never the fault of the "plan".


Suzy said...

And as I pontificate on until I am blue in the face, it all depends on how you define failure. Sure, it looks like a failure to us -- too many people dead, a nation disrupted, infrastructure destroyed, our own country in a shambles -- but how does it look to the Carlisle Group, Bechtel, Halliburton, Blackwater? Pretty damned successful. On to Iran! There's more money to be made!

Mauigirl said...

Good post, Pygalgia. I really like how you point out that the goals are America's goals for Iraq, not Iraq's goals for Iraq. This is the whole reason the way Americans are perceived by other countries as arrogant. Who the heck are we to tell Iraq how to run their country? And now that we've stepped in and removed the previous government, we need to try to understand where the Iraquis are coming from and let them determine what is important to them. This administration can't conceive that another country's people wouldn't want to be just like us and run their country the same way!

Mauigirl said...

Oops, meant, "the whole reason WHY American's are perceived..."

FranIAm said...

I did not get to read this in full earlier... Wow. Your words and thoughts are really eloquent.

This administration makes arrogant bastards with hubris look like a bunch of nice guys. It is unreal.

Other than write, try to remain active in some local political causes and get involved with national ones... I just so often feel impotent to stop the evil.

Where are we headed?

Anyway- thank you for your alway insightful and thought provoking posts.

And of course, a booby. (couldn't resist that one!)

pygalgia said...

Trust me, I'm in local politics (might reveal more later), but I have a "face made for radio" so I tend to be behind the scenes.

cognitorex said...

What the idiots wanted to do was establish a palm-ocracy in Iraq. You know, set up Chalabi, grease all the palms and voila Iraq would be in our sphere of influence forever.
Then the religious leader said, (which the US resisted) "You will have democratic elections, if you want my support."
So democracy doomed palm-ocracy and it's all been in the crapper since.

The metaphor I prefer for the Iraqi quagmire is that America forcefully shoved its arm into a deeply murky toilet to retrieve a bright shiny object. To extricate itself it simply needs to unclasp its rigid grasp and withdrawal will easily proceed.

This simple and logical opinion arrives at the same conclusion as that of the Iraq Study Group. Their advice was:

A. Inform the Iraqis et al that the U.S. will eventually disassemble their major bases in Iraq and leave. ("Let go of the shiny object!")

B. Form a multinational force (preferably with Arab country participation) to oversee security and policy making for Iraq. ("Take your arm out of the toilet.")


All this is my long winded way of saying your post hit the nail on the head. It's oxymoronic to think that the idiots can get what they want in Iraq because that just means everybody has to fight on.