Since When Do Men of God Lead Armies Against Their Own Country?
If you've been watching the news this week, you may have seen that casualties in Iraq have spiked up a bit, mostly from sectarian fighting in Basra, and rockets being lobbed into the Green Zone of Baghdad. The main source of the trouble? Muqtada al-Sadr.
Yes, Mookie is back. You may have remembered that he left Iraq and fled to Iran - a sure sign that trouble would soon follow. Face it, the guy wasn't going on a religious retreat..... or maybe he was, at least in his mind. Well, it's ayear later, and no doubt al-Sadr has been restocked by the Shiite led Iranian government, and Mahmoud Ahmadinejad. Like Osama bin Laden, we had a chance to take him out, we didn't, and now he' s back and even stronger.
We know why al-Sadr is pushing now. John McCain is the GOP nominee, and if elected, we may have a permanent presence in Iraq, a la Japan and Korea... The extremists want us gone for good, and that will only happen if a Democrat is elected, so they have to make it look like the surge is not working. Maybe it isn't.
I've been back and forth on this for a long time. I don't like being in Iraq, especially when the Iraqi government can't get their shit together to unify themselves, and we sit around as targets on a daily basis. We started the war on terror after the 9-11 attacks, but when you take a step back at the failures of the actual attack, it leaves some doubt as to whether going into Iraq is still needed. All of the lapses that caused the 9-11 attack have been fixed, and we are no longer asleep at the wheel when it comes to the threat.
I'm not saying that we need to entirely pull out of Iraq, but that maybe a covert operation aimed specifically at the terrorists there would be more effective, less costly, and be able to calm the Iraqi people to drop their guns, and get back to work. I wouldn't like it if my next door neighbor were parked on my front lawn every day, so I can empathize...
Maybe this isn't the popular train of thought in the GOP, but it seems to me that the violence in Iraq will only settle down to a certain point if we keep our presence there. The jihadists may claim victory at first, but when we keep picking them off in the shadows one by one, five years from now, we may be finally asking what happened to them, and Iraq will finally be peaceful again.