no profit in Iraq?

We’re not going to last in Iraq.

It's not working. Not surprisingly, we are being blamed for everything bad that happens there, which these days may be most everything, and that country appears to be literally up in arms [curious that a well-armed citizenry, traditionally just a fetish of the American radical right, did not save Iraq from tyranny]. I don’t expect we will hold out very long. We don’t seem to have a plan, we almost certainly don't have the commitment needed, and we don't even have the advantage of the kind of [courage of conviction?] which was able to maintain the last Iraqi dictatorship for so long.

They don’t love us.

Americans, incredibly uninformed or misinformed anyway, are increasingly confused about what’s going on over there, and now even military families are getting very upset, although their anger is not focused or directed at a target - yet.

The administration didn’t tell them that we wouldn’t be welcomed with open arms, that we weren’t going to spend much money or manpower on rebuilding what we destroyed, that the world wouldn’t support our unilateral invasion and wouldn't bail us out in our occupation duties afterward, especially since we look increasingly like sitting ducks, that the lights would still be out in much of the country months after we decided we won, that the numbers of Americans being maimed and killed would accelerate as time passed, that we would end up fighting an insurgency which might never end, that this was not Japan or Germany in 1945.

Perhaps most important, it’s certainly unlikely the administration told its corporate backers that, since we could not make friends or even keep order in a country we boasted we had liberated, in the end there would be no fortunes made in Iraq, and this may ultimately be the decisive factor when we decide to abandon our self-appointed role.

At least it's clear once again that for this administration it was never about "nation building." The Bushies did not change their tune as they marketed the wars on Afghanistan and Iraq with generous promises of liberation gifts. The talk about democracy, schools, health care and repair of infrastructure was domestic and foreign Realpolitik, mouthed as cover for the cynical objectives of national power and party advantage.

It's just not working out the way the White House thought it would. Unfortunately that may not be any better news for Iraq than it is for an American republic now corrupted and compromised, perhaps beyond repair.

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Published on July 6, 2003 12:16 AM.

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