"It is the common fate of the indolent to see their rights become a prey to the active. The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt." -- JP Curran, 1790

Monday, November 17, 2008

Iraq: The Ending in sight and historical interpretations

To be clear; the War in Iraq ended successfully on April 9, 2003 with the successful toppling of Saddam Hussein and his reign of terror. President Bush's was not in error when declaring Mission Accomplished that May. We successfully defeated the enemy of the day. The error was inadequately planning for reconstruction.

It has been stabilizing the peace and rebuilding of the new Iraqi Government that existed since 2003 and continues today. With the elimination of Saddam's control, the vacuum of power was quickly consumed by an Al Qaeda insurgency, Iranian and Syrian financing, and regional warlords. The Coalition Forces were vastly undersized for this mission. Stretched thin, the reconstruction hit a low-point in 2006. This all changed with "The Surge" of 20K addition Soldiers and extensions of 4K Marines.

It appears that the Iraqi government has approved a security pact with the U.S. that would extend a troop presence until 2012. To add historical perspective, the U.S. was involved in the rebuilding of Japan from 1945 to 1952 when the Treaty of San Fransisco was signed (7 years). We were largely involved in the rebuilding of Germany from 1945 to 1955 when Western Germany joined NATO (10 years).

Iraq has not failed. The war was won victoriously in a matter of weeks. The rebuilding has been challenging and costly but appears to be ending successfully. Mistakes were made, but they were corrected. The long-term benefits are yet to be measured, but a stabilized Iraq is a near-term victory for the Global War on Terrorism.

For all of those who voted for a Democrat or Republican because of their pledge to "end the war in Iraq", you've been played. They didn't have the guts to end a war in defeat because they knew that the American people would not accept that (regardless of what MSM polls have said). Ask Cindy Sheehan what she thinks of political promises broken (i.e. Nancy Pelosi). We are on the path toward successful completion of the follow-on mission of rebuilding Iraq. We have President Bush to thank for his determination and honor when tough choices had to be made.

Barack Obama and the Democrats will try to claim victory in ending the War in Iraq. But today's announcement, if approved by the Iraqi government, have set in place the end. They are not the orchestrator of this victory but only the beneficiaries of others' efforts. Like Clinton's claimed responsibility for the economy of the 90s, Presidents inherit the results of the actions of their predecessors (good and bad). It is up to us to ensure that history is recorded accurately.

Signing off...JCB Sphere: Related Content

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