Happened to notice this bit in the “Letter from the Co-Chairs” at the beginning of The Iraq Study Group Report. It’s the fourth sentence:
is a crock
Our political leaders must build a bipartisan approach to bring a responsible conclusion to what is now a lengthy and costly war.
To put it bluntly, that is a total crock.
Ignore for now the choice of the phrase “responsible conclusion” and all that that could imply. What Murdoc believes is a crock is the idea that a “bipartisan approach” is somehow necessary.
For the past several years, we’ve all been hearing more and more about how US politics are so “polarized” and that the “gap” between Left and Right (or between Democratic and Republican or between Liberal and Conservative) is dangerously wide. I’m not arguing that it isn’t wide. I’m just arguing that it’s not anything to be worried about. Anyone who wants to pretend that the differences haven’t always been so great hasn’t been paying attention for the past two hundred plus years.
Four years after the campaign in Iraq began we certainly don’t need to be hearing about how a “bipartisan approach” is what’s needed. We need to be hearing about what the “right approach” is. I think everyone will agree that doing the “right” thing is, obviously, right. The problem, of course, is that everyone will define “right” as something different.
And there you have gaps.
Now, I’d be in favor of getting consensus from whatever group we’re talking about. Murdoc, for all of his warmongering, really does just want to get along. The wish for world peace and harmony, or at least the wish for peace and harmony in US politics, ends when one side is hell-bent on defeat.
And make no mistake. Pulling out of Iraq, particularly if dictated by some arbitrary deadline and/or arbitrary budget maneuvering, would be a defeat of the United States. A major defeat. The sort of defeat that invites trouble.
Wanting to lose is wrong
I have no interest in reaching any sort of consensus with those determined to bring about the defeat of the United States in Iraq. Our enemies, the real enemies–the ones with AK-47s and RPGs and suicide bomb vests and improvised explosive devices–are working hard enough and fighting tenaciously enough to leave the outcome on the battlefield in doubt. No one would recommend a “bipartisan approach” with the leadership of Al Qaeda in Iraq or the with the Sunni Insurgency, would they? So why would consensus with folks who have been very clear about what they want and what they’re willing to sacrifice to get it be any better?
Our system of government is based upon differences of opinion. Setting terms of agreement between two sides so clearly opposed to each other on this issue is pointless. One side wants to win and one side really seems to want to lose. I don’t care how many people voted for them. Wanting to lose is wrong.
Note that I’m not comparing the defeatist element of the US Congress and the American public to the terrorists and insurgents in Iraq. Not directly.