Archive for January, 2007

Let’s Just WIN… Okay!

January 20, 2007

Once you commit, you leave your doubts behind and focus on winning. We do not need to surrender. We can win if we have patience and continue to adapt when things are not working. War is always a battle of wills. Once we commit, we decide we will never surrender. Our will shall not falter. At least mine won’t. Will yours?

Why can’t today’s Democrats get this? We can’t return to the past before the war. We have only one choice now: win.

We all need a new WIN button like we had in the ’70s. Whip Insurgents Now!

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Creating Dependence?

January 19, 2007

Today, Lee Hamilton told the House Foreign Affairs Committee that with the planned surge in Baghdad, “you delay the date of completion of the training mission, you delay the date of handing responsibility to the Iraqis. You delay the date of departure of U.S. troops.” Why are democrats all of sudden worried about our government creating dependency—the idea that increasing the number of troops in Baghdad will only make the Iraqi Army more dependent on us and prevent them from stepping up? Why ‘welfare’ reform overseas but no worries about creating dependency at home? Perhaps the ‘dependent’ class in Iraq doesn’t vote for Democrats, but the one at home does. Hypocrisy.

Which ‘ism’ is it important to address?

January 19, 2007

Many blogs and opinion articles have provided the opinion that critics of the surge really want America to lose because they have ‘Bush derangement syndrome’, and any win for America is a win for Bush. Or, the critics may want America to lose to hasten the country’s return to humility.

Another reason for being against the surge and a last try at winning, in my opinion, is that the careers of many on the left are focused on addressing ‘isms” other than militant extremism: racism, civil liberties-ism, anti-capitalism, poverty, health insurance for all, global warming-ism, etc. Since 9/11 they are angry that we are devoting so much attention to ‘terrorism’ or ‘militant extremism’, rather than their pet ‘isms.’ I think it is a deep-seeded psychological need of many on the left to get back to our ‘holiday from history’ of the 90s and focus on the their ‘isms.’

Many on the left seem to believe that there is no real danger from leaving Iraq; that there is no terrorism fight there in anyway at all—it’s only sectarian violence created by us . Let’s pretend that terrorism is only a reaction to America’s aggression and therefore if we just stop all will be well. Let us pretend that terrorism is a fleeting danger and that, for example, the administration’s surveillance efforts of Al Qaeda contacts with Americans are a greater threat (‘civil liberties-ism’).

I believe we are facing the great ideological struggle of our time. That among the many ‘isms’, militant or muslim extremism is the most important to address. Many on the left resent this and therefore chose to minimize it and any difficult efforts to address it (such as the surge).

It is not surprising, therefore, that Speaker Pelosi would bring out the global warming panel idea now. She won’t de-fund the surge and placates her base by turning Congress’s focus back to the ‘isms’ they care about (such as global warming-ism)—certainly not terror-ism.

Is it only a matter of Iraqi will?

January 18, 2007

There has been a lot of discussion lately about strategy/tactics/methods in Iraq. There is still little clarity or confirmation of the objective in Iraq on the part of “surge” critics. Discussion of strategy/methods should begin with each person’s clarification of their objectives.

It is clear that the troops want to win. A loss would be devastating to the military and officer corps—as it was after Vietnam. I want a win, no matter how long it takes. I define ‘win’ as the administration does in terms of a government that is representative of its people, a friend of the west, and not a sanctuary for terrorists/extremists. If at first we don’t succeed (and obviously we have not), try and try again. We need to use our minds to figure out how to win, instead of giving up because the task is daunting or our base wants us to.

However, even among critics that seem to have a “win” objective, they assume that it is only a matter of will on the part of the Iraq government. Thus, removing our troops and putting more pressure on the Iraq government would make sense and the surge would be wrong if true. This should be the key debating point. Is the lack of current progress primarily a matter of will on the part of the Iraq government? I agree it is in part, but that this is an insufficient explanation. The troops also seem to disagree that the lack of security is only due to a lack of will on the Iraqi side.

Those who think the surge as worth trying, need to continue to make this point: lack of security is the main impediment to creating the political will, and that Iraq is not ready to create a good security environment in Baghdad on its own. Pulling our troops out of Baghdad is not the answer; rather than create an incentive for Iraqis to provide security, it will likely provide the incentive toward increased sectarian identity—the greatest threat toward winning. We need a new “WIN” button: Whip Insurgents Now.

Still a Neocon

January 18, 2007

While Neocons are chided for being naive in their methods, I still hold to the main objectives of supporting democracy and freedom as the best answer to extremist ideologies. I do believe we are in the great ideological struggle of our time. There is a lot of room for discussion, for how forward leaning and active we are in promoting these goals. This blog’s purpose is to support the goals of the Neoconservative movement with an openness to critical thinking about methods.

Update: Neo-NeoCon writes better than I can:

Democracy, its spread, and the neocons (Part I).

Neocons believe that the spread of liberal democracy–democracy with safeguards for human rights and liberties–would be of general benefit to the US, to the citizens of the countries involved, and to the world.

Although I’m sure there are some exceptions, most neocons also believe that the spread of liberal democracy to countries that have not known it before, or that knew it only briefly and/or erratically, is neither inevitable nor easy. But they believe it is possible rather than impossible.

Contrary to the notion of some critics, however, neocons neither prefer nor require that such transformation to democracy be accomplished by force–a peaceful evolution, relatively sudden or relatively gradual, is far superior. However, neocons are unwilling to rule out force under certain circumstances. A circumstance that could justify the use of force would be a country or leader constituting a serious threat to the US or its allies, one that doesn’t appear containable by other means. Neocons most definitely do not advocate warring on nation after nation for the sole purpose of installing democracies…

…But there’s no denying that the present form of liberal democracy in both Germany and Japan are direct results of their defeat in war, and a subsequent occupation and rebuilding effort spearheaded by the US. So it’s at least possible, under certain circumstances. (14 Feb 2007)