Upfront | Editorial | Indy Week
Pin It
It ain't over

Upfront 

It ain't over

We can lose this war. Not just in the ways we've already suffered losses--of our own young men and women, by bearing responsibility for the deaths of hundreds and likely thousands of innocent Iraqis, by breaking faith with virtually the entire global community. We can lose this war the old-fashioned way, by getting our asses kicked.

No, not in Iraq. We've demonstrated that our heavy armor, well-trained troops and multimillion-dollar, GPS-guided smart bombs can get us control of most of the country (or at least the main roads). The secretary of state has suggested that's enough to declare victory--regardless of Saddam's fate.

We can lose this war because we're not being told what it's really all about. Last year, a few columnists started putting two and two together: the Bush doctrine of pre-emption--which the administration, with Sept. 11 as a pretense, is using to get rid of Saddam--and the strategic importance of creating a non-Islamic government in an Arab country that's friendly to the United States.

But that connection isn't making its way into daily newspaper or television coverage of the war. It isn't making its way into public debate. And it certainly isn't making its way into the administration's discussions of the war. Instead, all we get are the by-now routine litany of lies--about al-Qaeda, about weapons of mass destruction, about a temporary presence helping the Iraqis before getting out.

But in this month's Washington Monthly magazine, a publication renowned for pointing out issues months or years before they're picked up on the mainstream radar, Joshua Micah Marshall makes the case that the Bush administration's neo-conservatives aren't scared by the prospect of Middle East turmoil. In fact, they embrace it. They envision scenarios in which Iraq and Iran become pro-Western, and Turkey and Jordan become more so. "Like a character in a bad made-for-TV thriller from the 1970s," he writes, "you can hear yourself saying, 'That plan's just crazy enough to work.'"

But the risks are enormous, he points out. And the historical precedents are non-existent. Iraq isn't Germany or Japan. The Middle East isn't the Soviet Union. We don't have international support. Rather than being embraced as we were in Eastern Europe, we may incite creation of new organizations like Hamas and Hezbollah to fight us. But worst of all, Marshall says (reflecting something we've said here a number of times): "...the White House has in mind an enterprise of a scale, cost, and scope that would be almost impossible to sell to the American public. The White House knows that. So it hasn't even tried."

Instead it has cynically, calculatedly misled us. When are we going to start talking about that?

To read Marshall's article, go to www.washingtonmonthly.com.

  • It ain't over

Comments

Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

INDY Week publishes all kinds of comments, but we don't publish everything.

  • Comments that are not contributing to the conversation will be removed.
  • Comments that include ad hominem attacks will also be removed.
  • Please do not copy and paste the full text of a press release.

Permitted HTML:
  • To create paragraphs in your comment, type <p> at the start of a paragraph and </p> at the end of each paragraph.
  • To create bold text, type <b>bolded text</b> (please note the closing tag, </b>).
  • To create italicized text, type <i>italicized text</i> (please note the closing tag, </i>).
  • Proper web addresses will automatically become links.

Latest in Editorial

More by Richard Hart

  • Adios

    After five years, 265 issues and countless calls and e-mails from flacks, fans, African lotteries and annoyed readers, it's time to move on.
    • Aug 1, 2007
  • Artistic turn

    There's a shift developing in the Triangle's discussion of the vital role artists and the arts play in the community, and it's about time.
    • Jun 27, 2007
  • Real winners

    The phrase "award-winning journalism" has become a meaningless cliché.
    • Jun 20, 2007
  • More »

Twitter Activity

Comments

What's interesting about this case is how they got her on first degree murder for conspiracy, but only 2nd degree …

by Paris Merriam on Deadly injustice (Editorial)

"From 1982 to 2014, two-thirds of the 69 mass shootings—defined by the FBI as killings that involved four or more …

by Todd Jenkins on Searching for answers about Craig Stephen Hicks (Editorial)

Most Read

© 2015 Indy Week • 201 W. Main St., Suite 101, Durham, NC 27701 • phone 919-286-1972 • fax 919-286-4274
RSS Feeds | Powered by Foundation