Friday, June 23, 2006

Iraq I: It's Time to Call the War a Draw

In the U.S., somebody always has to be a winner. That's not written anywhere in the Constitution, but it's the American Way. So along comes the World Cup and an opportunity to acquaint Americans with something usually absent in their must-win lives -- be it business interactions, social relations or sports.
That is the concept of the draw.
A draw as in a tie or a stalemate such as Thursday's World Cup contest between Australia and Croatia, which ended in a 2-2 draw after a hard fought match where neither team, despite great play, was able to prevail. (There have been no fewer than seven other draws, three of them scoreless, in World Cup play through Thursday.)

All this by way saying that it is time to inject the concept of the draw into the war in Iraq. Please. Now.
President Bush's incantations about staying the course and winning the war no longer have any moral gravitas.

Whether U.S. troops remain for one more year or five, the elements tearing Iraq apart will not have been vanquished.

Four years on, the time has come for the Iraqis to begin fending for themselves.

Fears that a U.S. troop pullout will trigger a civil war are misplaced. Iraq has been in a state of civil war -- albeit in slow motion -- for months.

The Mess in Mesopotamia may have started out as a bipartisan war, but now it's clearly a partisan war. That's the fault of the White House. The Bush administration's efforts to compare it to World War II, which was a gloriously bipartisan conflict, are a bad joke. Partisan wars cannot be won.

Republicans surely known that. But they have been unable to reconcile the thought of pulling the plug on Baghdad because they'd be portrayed as losers, and as they repeatedly tell us, it's the Democrats who are the losers.

Given these realities, does it not make more sense to settle for a draw and begin a phased troop withdrawal?
(Photo by Franco Pagetti for Time magazine).


highwayscribery said...

The GOP are hpiing to make something out nothing by again "painting" the Democrats as something or other. Will it wash with all the blood clinging to their own decision-making process. In the end, don't Americans know Dems are too weak to confront the issue, but not responsible?

Shaun Mullen said...

Most Americans are figureatively shopping at the mall and the war is an abstraction.

There are those of us who recognize that blood is on the Republicans' hands but the Democrats must share the blame for their cowardly silence as a party and their inability to articulate a coherent message in the fourth year of an immoral and costly war.

So when all is said and done, the Democrats are in one respect even more at fault than the Republicans -- for not rallying the country.

Anonymous said...

NPR had a guy on saying that a draw is un-American. I knew where he was going with it as he mentioned the war a few seconds later. I could picture him with his dockers and loafers cheering the American team, and high-fiving other dockers-men and blaming the refs when they didn't win. Probably never played a minute in his life. Glad I read you to put the score on this issue 2 - 1. Docker boy loses. No draw.