Tom Ricks has an editorial in the New York Times – herein after called NYT – on why we should stay in Iraq
As a longtime critic of the American invasion of Iraq, I am not happy
about advocating a continued military presence there. Yet, to echo the
counterinsurgency expert David Kilcullen, just because you invade a
country stupidly doesn’t mean you should leave it stupidly.
I like Ricks – alot – and read his blog on a fairly regular basis and I will readily admit that he know more about Iraq than I ever will but I think he is dead wrong. We should get out and let the chips fall where they might. It just seems to me that staying in Iraq because the Iraqis can not govern themselves smacks of the old time White Man's Burden. It is just plain chauvinistic.
Imagine how we would feel if Britain had used the Civil War as a reason to occupy the United States. About 625,000 soldiers were killed in the Civil War and an estimated additional 325,000 civilians in the lead up to the Civil War and the aftermath. That is probably more than have been killed in Iraq since 2003 and the US then and Iraq now are about comparable populations.Every pole I have seen – which I'll grant is not very many – says that the Iraqis want us gone.
But, more importantly to me, is that our being in Iraq is hurting us. Us as in the United States. We are spending money we don't have to be there.It seems to me that every country that has tried to do what we are trying to do – fight endless wars – destroys itself.