Thursday, January 11, 2007

Surge Overkill

As I was listening to 43’s speech last night, I found myself returning to the same conclusion over and over – that our president pretends that to support the Iraqi government under PM Nouri Al-Maliki, is to support a neutral, or uniting party in their civil war, when really we are signaling our support for one side over the other, and that cannot help but escalate the conflict.

Or, as the indispensable Sidney Blumenthal puts it:

Maliki's management and subsequent defense of the gruesome circus surrounding Saddam's execution disabused any illusion that he could act in the larger Iraqi national interest rather than as a political representative of Shiite sectarianism. He is to his marrow a creature of the Dawa Party, founded by Muqtada al-Sadr's father, and his alliance with al-Sadr. While the intent of the surge is to revitalize the Maliki government, that government cannot and does not wish to be reformed. The problem is not merely that Maliki is a weak political leader, or that his political coalition wouldn't permit it, or that his Iranian sponsors wouldn't allow repudiation -- all of which are indisputably true. The irreducible reason is that Maliki exists only to achieve Shiite control, and if he did not he would not exist. There is no other Maliki. Nor can Bush invent one.

We had a chance, when Bush’s father attempted to save his son’s presidency and his own legacy with the Iraq Study Group, to get out in the least damaging way possible. But 43, who called the ISG report a “flaming turd,” was not about to be shown up by his father’s men, and Condi, who had already seen her predecessor, Colin Powell, become persona non grata by fucking with Cheney and the neocons, promised her former mentor Scowcroft as well as Baker and the other men of the 41 camp that she would try to persuade 43 to follow the ISG, but in the end she screwed the pooch. Again.

Then Cheney goes to his friends, the geniuses over in the American Enterprise Institute, and tells them to publish a plan for the president to follow instead. And they do. It calls for “a surge,” and surprise, surprise, that’s what 43 decides to do – the one thing NOT called for in any of the ISG’s 79 recommendations. The one thing his father’s men did NOT want.

The only event that could make this whole conflict more Oedipal is if 43 actually climbed into bed with his vicious, drunk old bitch of a mother. Oh, but Thebes had it easy. The citizens of that ancient city-state only had a pile of crazy royals to clean up at the end of that conflict. We have the bodies of untold thousands to bury and account for, and the families of 3000 troops to look in the eye and tell them, sincerely and with feeling, that it was worth it.

Bush seems to be betting on the horse of the future, that some distant historian will finally allow him the wisdom and foresight that we did not.

I say that history will find that the first 3000 died for our ignorance, and the second 3000 died for our neglect.


Phil said...

Daily Show just stole your Surge Overkill line.

vikkitikkitavi said...

I'm pissed, because I'm sure I'm the ONLY BLOGGER who came up with that.

Johnny Yen said...

I'm going to have to quote you on that last line. Brilliant post.

I can't believe anybody in the media would actually take the American Enterprise Institute seriously-- they are blatant hacks for the far right.

dad said...

Accuracy defined!

vikkitikkitavi said...

Yeah, imagine if Bill Clinton had adopted a strategy in Bosnia from