Monday, December 31, 2007


Thought of the Day

The total military dead in the Iraq war between 2003 and this month stands at about 3,133. This is tragic, as are all deaths due to war, and we are facing a cowardly enemy unlike any other in our past that hides behind innocent citizens. Each death is blazoned in the headlines of newspapers and Internet sites. What is never compared is the number of military deaths during the Clinton administration: 1,245 in 1993; 1,109 in 1994; 1,055 in 1995; 1,008 in 1996. That's 4,417 deaths in peacetime but, of course, who's counting?

Alicia Colon


Dear Ms. Colon,

Obviously you are counting. The primary difference between the deaths of service men and womwn during those Clinton years that you cite and the 3,133 sacrificed in Mr. Bush's War, is that the latter were victims of the President's folly.

One conservative blogger (not you Rog) whose cite I visit from tiome to time defined victory in Iraq as the war resulting in a stable deomocratic Iraq. I have adopted that definition as my own as wars are merely the use of military means toward a political end. What do you think the odds are of achieving that end? Close to nil I think. Those odds were foreseeable b/f the invasion to anyone who had studied the history and culture of Iraq. So, count away.
Folly? Perhaps you haven't been keeping up on current events but we have just finished a second ass kicking of al Qaeda this decade. I'm aware of your predictions. I just don't see them coming true. I'll post on this subject soon.

Yesterday I read a quote from a senior U.S.commander, whose name escapes me now, that 75% of AQM has ben destroyed or neutralized. That certainly is good news. The bads news is that the remaining 25%, in whatever actual number that represents, is a 25% increase in AQM terrorists in Iraq over this same time in 2002. Actually, in theory not b/c any multiple of zero is zero and what you sem to forget is that AQM did not exist b/f the invasion of Iraq.

Meanwhile, we did not invade Iraq to address al Qaeda although the Bush administration did all it could to misrepresent the facts and to create in the minds of the American people a relationship between Saddam and al Qaeda when non existed.

So let us laud progress but let us be humble in the recognition that we are addressing a problem that our policy allowed to come into being.

Also remember that the ultimate purpose of the war is a political end and success may only be ultimately measured by the success of the fledgling Iraqi democracy.

One more point. The Sunnis that we have been arming to combat AQM--what will they do once AQM has been neutralized completely?

You are mistaken old friend, the late al Zarqawi and minions were there to greet our troops, having been kicked out of Afghanistan by our troops and allies.
Also, your folly is to forget that in total war, victory preceeds any political change. We're not fighting a total war yet; Muslim extremists better hope we never do.

al Zarqawi was in Iraq purportedly recovering from wounds suffered in Afghanistan and fighting against Kurdish nationalists.

In other words, he was a playing in the bush leagues until the deposition of Saddam after which, like many vermoin, he thrived in the absence of any predators.

Had Saddam not been deposed there would have been no AQM. I am sure Saddam was content to let relatively powerless figures like al Zarqawi harrass the Kurds but if al Zarqawi ever tried to organize anything significant, Saddam would have squashed him like a bug.

Either Saddam allowed him to do his thing in the Kurdish region or Saddam was unable to stop him. I go with the former. So much for no relationship between Saddam and AQ.
Yes there was a political vacuum after Saddam was deposed but that's like saying the sun rose the next day after we deposed him. True, but not that useful.

I agree, probably the former, Saddam allowed him to harrass the Kurds. al Zarqawi had no relationship w/ al Qaeda at that point. Please stop revising history. The guy was a murderous terrorist thug who, in the absence of a dominant predator, to wit Saddam Hussein, ran amok until we killed him. Only after he was running amok did he declare, sua sponte, a relationship w/ al Qaeda so he would have name recognition. Sorry, Rog, no sale on the Saddam-al Qaeda connection.

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