July 25, 2009

Shhh: America Victorious!

Justin Katz

I've been meaning to note Clifford May's brief history of the end of the war in Iraq:

The news is not that American combat troops withdrew from Iraqi cities. The news is that American combat troops withdrew from Iraqi cities in victory - rather than in defeat.

Two years ago at this time, few in the foreign-policy establishment considered that outcome possible. Some did not even see it as desirable. There were those who believed that the conflict in Iraq was "unwinnable," that America had met its match on the hot and dusty streets of 21st-century Mesopotamia. Others thought Americans needed a Vietnam-like refresher course about the futility of the use of U.S. military force anywhere in the world.

Interesting how this war from which we just had to retreat — right up until the outcome of the latest presidential election — has quietly faded into the annals of American victories. Unless the culture, and especially the media culture, changes in the coming decades, it's easy to imagine the whole thing's being presented as little more than a minor military excursion, not at all like that War in Vietnam, which (being a war) we lost.

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Wow, imagine that, as soon as Obama became President we started winning in Iraq. He truly is the messiah!

Posted by: bobc at July 26, 2009 11:36 AM

I thought we won in Iraq after Bush put the big sign up years ago?

Posted by: doughboys at July 26, 2009 9:18 PM

What did we win? Iraq is fractured. The Kurds are viewed as a dangerous separatist movement by our Turkish allies; the Shi'a are in control of the southern oil fields and in basic socio-political agreement with Iran; and the Iraqi government cannot agree on how to share its oil revenues.

I suppose one can say that we are winning because the number of US deaths has tailed off in the country. Think how many US lives would have been saved by not invading in the first place. But, I'm very glad to know that we are winning or have already won the war. I just don't know what exactly it is that we won.

Posted by: OldTimeLefty at July 26, 2009 10:15 PM


I think it’s too early to refer to this as ‘winning’ but it is true that US troops are not retreating.

The truth is our troops have helped and trained Iraqi troops to maintain order in their country. Your comments about Iraq may be accurate, but then you can say the US is fractured too and there are socio-political disagreements in most countries. Sounds to me like you are searching for the negative in an ever-improving situation.

You are right that thousands of US lives would have been saved had we left immediately after topping the regime. And many thousands lives would be saved if the police would stop trying to prevent crime. Crime still exists today, so what’s the point?

Posted by: msteven at July 29, 2009 11:25 AM
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