Skip to comments.5 years on, Iraq as an ally?
Posted on 05/17/2008 4:58:27 PM PDT by Libloather
5 years on, Iraq as an ally?
Posted By Uncle Jimbo
One of the themes that Pete Hegseth has been pointing out is that while Iraqis have killed many US service members, Iraq is not our enemy. As a matter of fact we need to start looking at them as a developing ally. The left, and far too many who have drunk the poison being published and broadcast, focus on the casualties in Iraq and the fact that we have been there for 5 years as the salient facts. Sadly no, those factors certainly matter but they fail to take a strategic view of our relationship with that country and our role in that region.
The proper context is our relationships with Germany and Japan post WWII. We fought a vicious, bloody war against both and even made the only use of nuclear weapons in history against Japan. Yet today we have troops in both countries and they have been allies ever since. The post-war periods in both were difficult, but we managed to take occupations and turn them into alliances that benefit all. The situation in Iraq is more difficult because the Iraqi Army and state were never actually defeated in combat. When the Thunder Run rolled into Baghdad, the vast majority of Iraqi soldiers took off their uniforms and went home. This is a very different dynamic and we didn't adapt to it very well. Rumsfeld's plan to impose a national government and allow that to rebuild their society might have worked if the Sunni Baathists had stood their ground and been summarily defeated. Instead we disbanded the army and left tens of thousands of Saddam's thugs with no livelihood and the idea that they could run us back out of their country by terrorist acts.
When we regained the initiative by adopting a counter-insurgency strategy, we began the steps necessary to turn Iraq into an ally. Iran has designs on becoming the dominant force in the region and that would be detrimental to peace and stability. A free, democratic Iraq that considers the US a friend and feels grateful for being liberated from a tyrant would be a powerful counterpoint to Iran, which has been it's historic role. That may have seemed like a pipe dream even as late as 2006 but far too many people on the ground there now report that every day more Iraqis join forces with the US. And even more significantly the Iraqi security forces have made major strides toward providing their people the safe environment necessary for reconciliation and reconstruction.
The sticking point is the presence of US troops in the Middle East and that is a concern, but it is really a red herring used by the Islamists to justify their global jihad. If we took every US troop out of Iraq, they would complain about Kuwait, remove them and they will complain about McDonalds and Starbucks, burn those to the ground and satellite TV will become the rationale. These extremists want to rule the world under the iron sandal of Sharia law and we need to confront that not attempt to appease them. Although the presence of infidels in our ally Iraq would cause the jihadis tremendous consternation, a growing relationship between us and our new friend could show others in the area that we are not out to loot their oil. We helped rebuild most of Europe and also Japan after WWII and that gained us several solid allies, there is no reason not to follow that successful model and make Iraq our latest.
Even more importantly, we should look to Iraq for what they can do both for us, and the rest of the ME and Muslim world in the future.
Right now, the US military has given them a professional army with Shiites, Kurds and Sunnis in it. So when there are problems in the ME, wouldn’t the Iraqi army make superior peacekeepers?
For example, right now a division of Iraqi army soldiers could deploy to Lebanon. They could restore order to Lebanon without offending the Arab world, even if Iran and Syria had a hissy fit.
They could provide humanitarian support throughout the Muslim world. There is lots of potential here.
Sad this even needs to be written, of course Iraq is an ally. Note the democrats treat it as an enemy.
We are in the Persian Gulf because it contains 70% of the World's known oil reserves and is indispensable to the Free World's oil supply. If Saddam or the Iranian mullahs had ever gained military hegemony over the region and acquired nuclear weapons, they would be able to decree an economic Depression of Western Civilization whenever they pleased.
Before Jimmy Carter, we had troops safeguarding our vital interests in the region in the form of the Shah of Iran.
Jimmy Carter screwed the pooch and killed our proxy power in the Persian Gulf. As a result, we are still paying the strategic consequences thirty years later. If we are at war in the region now, thank Jimmy Carter.
After Jimmy Carter, we had we had troops safeguarding our vital interests in the region in the form of both Iran and Iraq killing each other on a massive scale during the Iraq-Iran War with Iran suffering 1 million fatalities and Iraq suffering half a million fatalities.
After the Iraq-Iran War was over, Saddam actually tried for such military hegemony and, for the first time, U.S. troops had to protect those vital interests as we no longer had the luxury of proxies. Thus, the Gulf War.
After the Gulf War, during the Clinton Administration, the U.S. troops were on the "holy soil" of Saudi Arabia to protect Saudi oil from Saddam which enraged Osama bin Ladin which brought about 9-11.
After the Iraq War, (the current conflict is actually the War of Insurgency that followed the Iraq War) the U.S. troop redeployed from Saudi Arabia to Iraq.
Note that, at no time since the Shah of Iran assumed power in 1941, was there ever an American power vacuum in the Persian Gulf as a long term option. Even temporary perceived power vacuums brought about nasty results in the Persian Gulf.
Leaving an American military power vacuum in the Persian Gulf is not an option unless the U.S. is willing to surrender 70% of the World's oil reserves to a nuclear-armed Iran ruled by religious nutjobs that think that nuking New York City, Washington, DC and several other American cities will win them Eternity in Paradise.
A good outcome we can hope for is to turn a secularized Iraqi population that is now sick and tired of homicidal religious nutjobs into a local ally as was the case with Iran during the days of the Shah.
The best outcome we can hope for is the destruction of the Iranian mullah regime so that we can have BOTH a secularized Iraqi population and a secularized Iranian population that are now sick and tired of homicidal religious nutjobs turned into a local allies as was the case with Iran during the days of the Shah.
would you like to see Jimmy be prez for another four years?How about Obama? (rhetorical)
Now compare how we dealt with WW2 losers the proper way:
The Japanese did go to work, but MacArthur rejected their efforts in early February 1946 as “nothing more than a rewording of the old Meiji constitution.” Eager to avoid interference from other allies, MacArthur took matters into his own hands. He ordered his government section to draft a document themselves, and to do it before the first meeting of the Far Eastern Commission, set for February 26. Staff member Beate Sirota Gordon, then in her early twenties, still remembers the day well:
And one morning I came in..., it was ten a.m. and General Whitney [head of the government section] called us into a meeting room. It was too small for all of us. Some of us had to stand because there were about 25 of us. And he said, “You are now a constituent assembly.” You can imagine how we felt. “And you will write the Japanese constitution. You will write a draft and it will have to be done in a week.”
....Their work resulted in a thoroughly progressive document. Although the emperor was acknowledged as the head of state, he was stripped of any real power and essentially became a constitutional monarch. A bi-cameral legislature with a weak upper chamber was established, and with the exception of the Imperial family, all rights of peerage were abolished. Thirty-nine articles dealt with what MacArthur called “basic human liberties,” including not only most of the American bill of rights, but such things as universal adult sufferage, labor's right to organize, and a host of marriage and property rights for women. But the most unique and one of the most important provisions came in Article 9, which outlawed the creation of armed forces and the right to make war. It's not clear whether or not the “No-war clause” originated with MacArthur, but it certainly would not have been included without him, and its presence in the constitution has had an enormous impact on Japan's postwar history.
We had a perfect blueprint but it was outsourced instead. Must have been a job Americans didn't want to do?