The parallels between Iraq and the Vietnam scenario are gathering and more than a few people have noticed. First advisors, then support personnel, and the next thing you know we are right back in the middle of it again. Supporting freedom is a long standing policy of this country, but in this case there seems to be a clear distinction. They (the citizens if Iraq) don’t want us there and it seems to me that we should be listening carefully. Once again a president mouthed the words about past investments of money and blood and how we needed to protect our “investments” and once again a lot of people are asking exactly what investment he’s talking about.
The interesting thing is that their own parliament has clearly stated that what is needed is a divided Iraq with one half for each of the two major factions. As was seen with the large wall that cut through Bagdad, when separated, the two factions tend to get along much better, but the question remains, if divided by a common boundary, will both respect the others rights and properties or will there be just two more countries that are constantly feuding with each other? History would suggest the later.
Of course the president stated clearly that US ground forces would NOT be involved in combat, but we’ve heard that before and from my own experience, any special operations forces are not going to stand back and not defend themselves or those they are associated with. Combat is inevitable and while “A” teams are specially trained to manage rather than fight, don’t kid yourself into thinking once the chips are down, every member will hesitate about firing a shot in anger.
A simple review of history once again shows that the most intelligent, yet caulis thing we could do is to step back and let history run it’s course. This is a fight between religious factions that has existed long before we were involved and will do so long after we have withdrawn. If you look at Vietnam today, the country is far better off since our withdrawal and while they are communist, the people are prosperous, happy, and successful … something that cannot be said during the French and American occupations.
It is said that the ISIS is sophisticated, publishing financial reports and other activities that make it “special” but a simple review shows they are not as smart as it appears. Like any army, they have logistical problems and living on the spoils they capture is not sustainable. They are also too thinly distributed to seriously hold their ground UNLESS the populations want to allow it and that is indeed the single greatest indicator of what actions we should take. Simply put, if a population is not willing to stand up and fight for themselves, we should not spill one drop of blood fighting for them.
So here we go. The only winners in this conflict will be the companies that supply the arms, supplies, and services that we contract out. If congress things a 7% approval rating is bad now, just want until those body bags and coffins start showing up on the nightly news. And lets not forget that the DOD is in the middle of cuts to the defense budget. Is the president so uninformed that he can’t see what will happen to the budget with a supplemental heal care, a newly financed VA and a swelling military complex? Anyone that can balance a checkbook can, what kind of calculator is he using?