"How did it come to pass that an opposition's measure of a president's foreign policy was all or nothing, success or "failure"? The answer is that the political absolutism now normal in Washington arrived at the moment--Nov. 7, 2000--that our politics subordinated even a war against terror to seizing the office of the presidency." - Daniel Henninger - WSJ 11/18/05
"the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts." - George Orwell

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Iraq and Iran; Not Separate Issues, Pieces of the Same Puzzle

From the point of view of most Democrats in Washington and of course those in agreement, Iraq is an entirely elective “war;” one that we can simply elect to “end.” Where this logic comes from is beyond most of us that support our efforts in Iraq and also consider one front in many in the greater war on terror.

If the surge is allowed to continue and with that continuation, tactics deployed are of the stripe of those being used now (let’s also include continued adjustment, which is always necessary in the realities of battle) things could slowly improve on the ground as they have been. With the confidence of support from the home front and positive results in the various provinces in Iraq, we could begin to see the political improvements that are thus far, wanting by so many.

Setting those successes aside though is necessary to address what is sorely lacking in Washington and that is a policy about what to do regarding Iran. Iran is not just in negotiations with Dr. El Baradei and his IAEA; Iran is part and parcel of the difficulties we face in Iraq. While El Baradei and other invested diplomats ply their chosen trade, which in my opinion is a lot of considering the wrong goals the means to success, Iran continues apace with its infiltration into the daily battles and life in Iraq (set aside the larger picture in the region that include Lebanon, Israel, Palestine through the IRGC, Hamas and Hezbollah).

Iran intends to continue to train Sunni, Shia, al Qaeda fighters through its proxy, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps; while supplying the financing and weapons through the IRGC that are necessary for the brass ring the Mullahs so covet; driving the U.S. out of Iraq.

Administrations of the past 30 years have pussyfooted around Tehran, backing down most times and/or giving them what they want with the expectation of their coming to see the light like any other normal nation. Iran has no geo-political strategy; it is a religious strategy in preparation for the return of the 12th Imam. Iran is sewing destruction in Iraq and elsewhere to inhibit any nascent Democracy in the region; they seek peace for the Iraqi people, but peace to the Mullahcracy for the Iraqis is an absence of the U.S.; which resembles peace in Iran…ironfisted and deadly.

This is not some call for attacking Iran, although as many “hawks” have said these military options should not be off the table. The Department of State, many in the CIA and others need to face the reality that 30 years of nothing out of Iran is forthcoming; the tactics of diplomacy is not the answer…revolution from the bottom is a necessity and time is of the essence.

If we just consider Iraq the issue, which is thinking inside the box there is a lot to be said for sticking in out and the perseverance the president has called for; this is not four years of the same tactic as detractors mendaciously claim, but sticking with it to get it right as so much is riding on it.

While not all the battles of this war will be exactly like Iraq, the bitter experience of the last four years should serve as a reminder that we must adapt to the war as it is rather than pretend we have the option of fighting a war we would prefer. Nor should we pretend that there's something more important for U.S. ground troops to do. If they are ordered to retreat from this battle, their next battle is likely to be a lot harder.

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