Tomer Ganihar took photos in an Israeli hospital in which detailed mannequins of men, women and children maimed by war and terror are used to train doctors and medics. They embody both the memories and the prediction of violence (text from the catalog.)
Michael Ignatieff, once of a supporter of the Iraq war, has changed his mind about the war and now believes it is necessary to walk away, and too bad about the Iraqis.
The decision facing the United States over Iraq is paradigmatic of political judgment at its most difficult. Staying and leaving each have huge costs. One thing is clear: The costs of staying will be borne by Americans, while the cost of leaving will be mostly borne by Iraqis. That in itself suggests how American leaders are likely to decide the question.
Philip Carter understands that this part at least, Ignatieff has gotten wrong. Carter understands that America won't walk away scot-free. It will pay a cost, but the bill may come due after the current generation of politicians kick the can down the road.
In the Iraq context, I think Ignatieff's point is somewhat oversimplified. Americans will pay many costs for leaving as well. But in broadbrush strokes, he is correct. The worst consequences will not weigh on the judgment of the American people and politicians who will inevitably make this decision. And because of that fact, I think the decision is pre-ordained. At some point, maybe in this political election cycle, or maybe in the next one, America will withdraw from Iraq.
Tomer Ganihar, in taking pictures of routine hospital in that international canary-in-a-coalmine, Israel, provides a small glimpse into the costs. I think the worst possible outcome in Iraq is not to leave the Iraqis, but all the capabilities we have acquired from Iraq behind. And that is because whether America decides to invade Pakistan, as Barack Obama has suggested, or waits behind its Fence, as the Israelis have done, inevitably the need for those capabilities will arise again. The real challenge in the War on Terror is not whether the West can defeat terrorism everywhere, but whether it can defeat chaos and the terrorism that thrives in it, in its single most intractable stronghold. Neither Armies, nor Navies nor Air Forces nor police forces nor national capabilities can be everywhere at once. But it suffices to know that wherever they go they will be victorious. Adjusting the shape of your effort is an option, but ultimately, retreat is not. In a globalized world, there is no place to go.