The President tells us the war in Iraq is over. It sounds a little hollow considering all the US forces still there, but we have to remember some things end with a whimper not a bang. This one has been dribbling toward an inconclusive end for some time now and the exact point at which we say it has ended is not all that important. The important thing is that the American people recognize that we have been conned by a group of swindlers into the worst debacle (so far) in the history of our nation’s relations with the rest of the world. So my principal sentiment as we emerge from this sorry mess is that I hope that we the American people have learned a lesson or two.
The first lesson is that efforts by elected officials and their staffs to politicize the intelligence process should be universally considered as odious and a crime against the American people. It is a new and noisy world we enter and if we do so blindfolded only more catastrophes can be expected. This should be obvious.
The second lesson should be that democratization is an evolutionary process that takes time and has to grow from the ground up. Prefabricated solutions made in the USA simply do not work. I am not oversimplifying, I have been with this development process in one way or another for over fifty years now and know whereof I speak. When that ass Jerry Bremer was made our proconsul in Baghdad he behaved with all the subtlety of the proverbial bull in the china shop, and everything we have done since then has been patchwork, bandaids applied to the wounds he and his buddies inflicted after the shooting was over.
The third lesson is that we should apply the second lesson to what we are doing in Afghanistan, and get the hell out.
Thank you for your patience.