Spare us the chest-thumping on Iraq

President Barack Obama is trumpeting this month’s withdrawal of the last U.S. combat troops from Iraq — 50,000 “transitional” troops will remain — as a campaign promise kept.

I’m sorry, but there’s nothing to trumpet about this miserable war, which after eight years has left us with nearly 6,000 U.S. military and civilian deaths, more than 70,000 Americans wounded and many times more Iraqi casualties.

Our country has spent $737 billion, and for what? For nothing.

If anything, Iraq has less long-term stability than when we started the bombing and we’ll leave the country with as much or more potential for breeding terrorism.

The government we sponsored in the aftermath of Saddam Hussein has been chronically unable to get its act together, and Iraqi deaths from war-related violence were at least 356 in July, the highest since last year. The suffering of these people will continue long after we’re gone — perhaps even more so than before we arrived.

So no political boasts, please. Tell me we’ve learned some kind of lesson about the futility of ham-handed attempts at nation-building in cultures we don’t understand and where we’re not welcome.

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4 Comments on “Spare us the chest-thumping on Iraq”

  1. charles Says:

    We are doomed to repeat the mistakes of the past.

    Such is the pox of Pax Americana.

  2. Michael Says:

    Other nations like Iraq have been fighting for thousands of years. America may be modern in warfare but lacks in fighting experience. Only way America can win is if they drop the A-Bomb. Make a desert of sand into diamonds. Fight for thousands of years, one either gets tired of fighting or it becomes part of their lives. Israel is an example.

  3. Kolea Says:

    The new US “Embassy” in Baghdad is larger than the Vatican City and will be a magnet for attacks. Military functions and equipment are being re-branded as State Department “security,” and therefore will not count as “military troops.” And thousands, possibly tens of thousands on military “contractors (read “mercenaries”) will continue to operate off the books, also not counting as “US troops.”

    “Change We Can Believe In”!

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