"Evil is powerless if the good are unafraid" - Ronald Reagan

New York

Iraq and Its Lessons

From Randall Hoven writing for the American Thinker.

What went wrong in Iraq? Why? Who was to blame? Comfortably ensconced in my armchair on Monday morning, let me tell you what happened.
First, how do we know anything went wrong? We should not start out with the common mistake of comparing what actually happened to some impossible ideal. The "ideal" war has zero casualties. We need to compare what actually happened to other feasible alternatives. That means if you are going to criticize what happened, you must present at least one other feasible alternative that would have had a better outcome. (If you can't do that, would you please just shut up.)

In this two part article, Mr. Hoven examines what went right and what went wrong in Iraq. His conclusion is very interesting.

Was there some way we could have nipped the insurgency in the bud, or at least kept it to a "tolerable" level (one that would not threaten our whole mission of rendering Iraq a non-threat to the US)?

I dare say, turning things over to the Iraqis even sooner might have done just that. Ironically, it was the Defense Department, especially the "neocons", who wanted to do that, and the State Department that wanted a true occupation with a US-led occupational government lasting for years.

As it was, President Bush sort of split the difference.

Mr. Hoven offers some great insights to support his conclusion. While he cautions against arm chair quarterbacking, he does a great job of assigning responsibility for the insurgency. It started in Al Anbar and ended in Al Anbar.

Who turned away paying the Al Anbar shieks in early 2003? Paul Bremer.

Who argued for not turning over Iraq to the Iraqis sooner? Paul Bremer.

For part II, click here.



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