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Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Hubris and Folly (Revisited)

National Newswire
B. Thomas Cooper

Hubris and Folly.

Just two of the words used by Thomas E. Ricks, senior Pentagon correspondent for The Washington Post to describe the Bush administration’s decision to invade Iraq and its management of the war and subsequent occupation.

And those were the nice words.

In his book, Fiasco, Ricks also accuses George Bush of being misguided, and incompetent, providing a plethora of disturbing detail, guaranteed to cause the reader great anxiety.

“President George W. Bush’s decision to invade Iraq in 2003 ultimately may come to be seen as one of the most profligate actions in the history of American foreign policy,” Mr. Ricks warns. “The consequences of his choice won’t be clear for decades, but it already is abundantly apparent in mid-2006 that the U.S. government went to war in Iraq with scant solid international support and on the basis of incorrect information — about weapons of mass destruction and a supposed nexus between Saddam Hussein and Al Qaeda’s terrorism — and then occupied the country negligently. Thousands of U.S. troops and an untold number of Iraqis have died. Hundreds of billions of dollars have been spent, many of them squandered. Democracy may yet come to Iraq and the region, but so too may civil war or a regional conflagration, which in turn could lead to spiraling oil prices and a global economic shock.”


Sectarian violence is all the rage now, and the afore-mentioned “regional conflagration” is warming up backstage. This as members of Congress prepare to battle the president over his determination to increase US troop levels in Iraq by twenty-one thousand, at a time when the majority of Americans would like to see the troops brought home.

B. Thomas Cooper
B. Thomas Cooper

Saddam has gone to the gallows, but violence in Iraq continues. Yesterday, 70 people were killed, and another 170 wounded as a result of a deadly attack on Mustansiriya University, north of Baghdad. Scores were killed or wounded in other attacks throughout the region. Iraqi civilians continue to die in huge numbers. Over thirty-four thousand Iraqi citizens were killed as a result of the violence in 2006 alone. So far 2007 is shaping up much the same.

The situation in Iraq is dire indeed and no-one suffers more from the carnage than the Iraqi’s themselves. I certainly hope they have enjoyed their brief dance with Democracy.

National Newswire

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