Sunday, November 12, 2006

We Will Be In This Quagmire for A Very Long Time

The number of troops we sent into Iraq was inadequate. It was not because Rumsfeld was not told ahead of time; he was. He cloaks his planning in terms of “a leaner, meaner fighting force.” The truth is his vision was to run the occupation with outsourced contractors. This serves several functions. Contractors do not get pensions which are a continuing expense for the government when it comes to taking care of our veterans. Contractors are not added to the number of troops killed and wounded, thus significantly hiding the actual number from the general public. The contractors hired by the Pentagon have close ties to the members of the Administration. What are friends for if they can’t line your pockets once they hold the most powerful positions on the planet? The contractors we sent in further outsourced their labor by bringing in desperate low paid workers from India and Southeast Asia which let the average Iraqi to fend for himself.

This alienated the Iraqi people but it should be noted that this is the model for all occupations and even disaster relief efforts. It would seem the motto of the Neo Cons is, “In every disaster let there be profit.”

The plainly stated vision of the occupation of Iraq was to set up a Super Capitalist model of how the world should work (at least in their eyes.) Step one is to privatize everything. This does two things. It places the profits in the hands of the few and removes power from the masses. If you want to survive in this model you had damned well better cooperate or you will be out of a job. Never mind that the pay will barely get you by. People busy with two jobs have little time for dissent. Sound familiar?

The Pentagon made a big show of allowing newspapers to start up all over Baghdad but beyond the atrocity of bombing Al Jazeera both in Afghanistan and Iraq they have systematically shut down the press in Iraq. Most recently the Iraqi Government shut down two television stations last week.

The Weapons of Mass Destruction was a lie. Installing Democracy is also a lie.

So where do we go from here?

If we leave the ensuing and further destabilization of the region will be exacerbated. I fear the same will happen if we stay.

If we could start all over again my first suggestion would be to not invade. Obviously that is inadequate now. Having gone in we should have excluded all private contractors, brought in an adequate force, not allowed any looting to take place at all, bestowed a general amnesty on the entire population and hired the Iraqi people to rebuild the country.

We can not start over again. Nothing that I can envision will make things better outside of a Summit Meeting in a neutral country of all concerned factions in the region. And, yes, that would include Iran and Al Qaeda.

At best this process will take years and an entirely different Administration and mindset.

For now we are simply screwed.

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