The Whole Truth and Nothing But the Truth
Marc Cooper tells the truth about "redeployment":
"I don't think this sort of Democratic obfuscation will wash. War is like sex. You're either in or you're out. Anything in between doesn't count for much. ... What's missing now is the political courage to state a simple truth which, I believe, a vast majority of Americans would understand and agree with: George W. Bush got us into a war we shouldn't have fought and which we cannot conclude. It's time to admit our mistake, give Iraqis notice, provide some funding and security support for the Iraqi government, and commence to orderly withdraw. Not redeploy."
Whether you agree with Marc Cooper or not, this is the kind of honesty that should have characterized the debate leading up to the election. I often wondered why the Democratic Party never articulated a warfighting policy on Iraq. What they would have done differently. Oil spot. More troops. Less troops. Unconventional warfare. Expand the war to Syria, Iran. Withdraw to enclaves. More training. Whatever. You know the stuff a more competent SecDef would have done. Now I understand that all that was irrelevant. Deep down though they never said it was the deep conviction that there was no good way to fight Iraq; that the original sin was to fight in Iraq at all. And Marc Cooper is not only entitled to that opinion, but welcome to express it. After all, he may have been right. The pity is that few others were as forthright as he is.
Remember all those articles from Generals who were going to do it right? No one was going to take their advice. The contrary views were printed just because they were contrary, not because anyone was thinking of switching to any strategy other leaving town. All that stuff about reporting for duty. Bring back the adults into the Defense Department. Lessons from past counterinsurgencies. British approach. Responsible redeployment. Thank God for Mark Cooper. He's right. That's just a dishonest word for the process of just giving the Iraqis notice, providing some funding and security support and getting the hell out of Dodge. Like we did in Vietnam. That lasted nearly three whole years after responsible redeployment. In many ways its more honest to leave some money on the night table, slip on your pants and push the car down the road before starting it so she doesn't wake up. Let her dream a little longer.
Well maybe you can't undo all the mistakes in your life and maybe it's better never to stop at bars along the road. Anyway, there's that deal in Phoenix and a plane to catch to the coast.