I have been giving a lot of thought lately about what it really means to our involvement in the War in Iraq now that the Democratic Party will soon control the US Congress.
Interestingly enough this smacks of the Korean War when MacArthur wanted to attack China to stamp out the onslaught of communism. Truman (a Democrat) went before Congress and asked for funding to support a “police action” in Korea with only a vague and ambiguous purpose – not a clear purpose like mobilization for complete victory as in WWII as FDR had.
Later Truman dismissed MacArthur because he publicly spoke of attacking China despite Truman and the Congress (Democratically controlled, mind you) wished just to police the “Korean Conflict” (notice it wasn’t called a ‘war” at that time). This ultimately led to over 33,000 deaths in Korea, the spread of communism to Vietnam and the Vietnam War in which 58,000 Americans died. How many have died in Iraq? Less than 3,000. (and yes, one death is too many, but it is war.)
After WWII MacArthur was the supreme commander of Japan. While many didn’t feel the US should hold such authority over another nation, it was necessary in order to return peace and order to Japan while the country and its government was being rebuilt. It also brought control over any radical groups which might have wanted to rebuild the Japanese military and start another war.
I honestly believe the US screwed the pooch in Iraq by not being more forceful and controlling after we forced Saddam out. We should have sent a message to Iraq, Syria, North Korea and all other terrorist countries “keep it up and you will be next – and it won’t be pretty.” This is essentially the message GWB tried to send by attacking Iraq initially, but there was no follow through. We went soft and didn’t finish things off.
Don’t get me wrong and think that I condone or support everything we did in Iraq (Abu Ghraib for example), but we tried to please too many people and we didn’t have the commitment to win.
We need to tell the rest of the world, that while we respect their opinions, this is about OUR safety and OUR Freedom and while they may not like the way we are going about it, the bottom line is we have to do it because “their way” has not worked.
Now that the Democrats are in power I fear things will only get worse.