A Question With A Simple Answer
Once more the news media has given two marginalized Senators air time. Senator John McCain and his diminutive sidekick, Lindsey Graham, are lamenting the events taking place in Western Iraq. To be sure, events in Ramadi and Fallujah are not very promising for anyone and for sure, Iraqis.
To listen to McCain and Graham, if only America has left a residual force (as little as 10,000 according to Graham), the Sunni (al Qaeda linked) insurgents would have been thwarted in ways not completely described. It is incredulous to think that the mere presence of American military would be sufficient to deter insurgents. It is almost certain that any US presence would have to engage in military action and 10,000 soldiers do not go that far. Oh, and lest the two good Senators forget, military action brings death and severe injury to our troops. For what?
Senator McCain, standing before the television cameras, asked, “what are we going to tell all those brave Americans who fought in Fallujah?”
The answer is actually quite simple. The government should say “We are sorry we invaded and occupied Iraq in the first place. We thank you for your service and apologize for putting you in harms way.”
Americans have to accept that Iraq and the prolonged presence in Afghanistan (not the initial hot pursuit to topple al Qaeda and the Taliban) were military engagements of choice. These uses of military force bear no resemblance to World War II where Americans were asked to risk their lives to protect the country. As such, the resulting American death and injury in Iraq and Afghanistan rests solely on the shoulders of the American leaders who sent in our troops.
The attempt to coerce a return of military presence in Iraq by seeking sympathy for troops who previously served is disgraceful and a repeat of the failed strategy used in 2002.
There will be no government apology I am sure. Politically this would never happen.
In a perfect world, there would be a mea culpa but not in the real world. We will have to settle for stoney silence to McCain’s question.