The War in Iraq has been the center of much military battle and political debate since it began in March 2003. Recently there has been great discussion in the newly Democratic-controlled Congress about a “phased troop redeployment” and whether the United States should continue this war on terrorism.
Currently, polls show that a majority of the American public has lost the resolve to continue our fight in Iraq, largely because of what seems to be an endless civil war. Some even equate our situation in Iraq to Vietnam. Most war critics’ views are based on mere emotion and little historical or realistic substance.
This piece seeks to point out the pretenses for beginning the war in the first place, as well provide an explanation of why it is absolutely necessary for the United States to be successful in Iraq. I will also offer critique on those critics who claim President Bush started a pre-emptive war and that he has been unsuccessful in the War on Terror.
Invading Iraq was not our first pre-emptive strike on a country, contrary to what ignorant critics claim. Truman entered America into the Korean War, which resulted in 55,000 lives lost. Kennedy started America’s involvement in Vietnam in 1962, which developed into a quagmire that cost 58,000 lives. Clinton went to war in Bosnia without United Nations or French approval; yet when Sudan offered three times to give the U.S. Osama bin Laden, he refused because of political correctness. It took Bush and our troops less time to topple the Iraqi regime than it did for Attorney General Janet Reno to take down David Koresh and his cult in Waco, Texas. And that was with 12 U.N. resolutions backing him and a coalition of 30 countries.
The solidarity between Congress and Bush was a convincing factor for me in supporting the original intervention. So was the last decade of public statements against Iraq by, primarily, the United Nations. But the best reason for me was when even France said that Iraq possessed weapons of mass destruction.
For 12 years the United Nations was getting nowhere with Saddam’s regime as it defied sanctions, no-fly zones and even kicked out weapons inspectors in 1998. This move alone signaled to me that they had something to hide, which was not very comforting.
Let’s face the facts of what critics mean when they say “phased troop redeployment.” They want America to declare defeat and pull out like Clinton did in Somalia in the early 1990s. Leaving Iraq right now would be politically, militarily, diplomatically and morally disastrous for the United States.
What happened to Somalia after America lost its resolve and Clinton gave in to defeatist attitudes is the clearest example. We went into the country’s capital with a heavy fist and firm resolve, and as soon as the insurgents there turned up the heat, we demonstrated we were politically weak and retreated. Upon our retreat, Somalia fell into a fragmented country marred by warlords and factions, a hotbed for terrorism and violence, which it still is today.
We were laughed at by our enemies, and considered the big giant with big empty promises. The very same, and worse, will happen in Iraq if we leave before the job is finished. Before, that is, the insurgency is put down and the Iraqi government is firmly established.
Iraq has become the hotbed of sectarian violence fueled by Syria and Iran, as well as for terrorists who are taking up the fight against the U.S. goals of freedom. It should be very easy to understand why the battle is so difficult in Iraq. The terrorists are threatened by the successful advances the United States has made in fighting their extremism since Sept. 11. Just try to put aside all the liberal media bias that has tainted the reporting of the war on terrorism and think for a moment about the amazing success we’ve achieved.
We have liberated two countries, totaling over 50 million people, from oppression, tyranny and subjugation. We have ended the Taliban regime in Afghanistan that supported Osama bin Laden and have wiped out over 75 percent of the top terrorist leadership of al-Qaeda. There has not been another attack on the United States in over five years; in fact, hundreds have been prevented because of the diligent and patriotic work of American and Allied officials.
In Iraq, we have disposed of Saddam, his two sons and the Baathist regime. We have established the roots of a fully functional democratic ally in the Middle East. The terrorists don’t want another democratic ally in the Middle East like Israel because it threatens their ability to plot and kill. The reason the United States supports Israel so much is the exact goal we are trying to achieve in Iraq and then some.
Even if the liberals won’t concede this point, it is a fact that no one in Congress who voted to authorize the Iraq War voted for failure, and if we leave, failure will surely ensue, just as it did in Somalia.
If we leave Iraq before the job is done, the democratically elected government will collapse, insurgents from Syria and Iran will take over and extreme terrorists will use the country as a base.
This will put horrible pressure on Israel and will put that sole democratic ally, as well as the United States, in much more danger. Leaving now will show we don’t have the resolve to fight terrorism, and that 9/11 was not the start of a continual struggle.
We must apply history to our present condition so we do not repeat the mistakes of our past. Let us learn from Somalia, which fell into chaos. Let’s stand strong in Iraq now so that we can leave as soon as possible, when the job is complete. Then America can not only say but prove to the world that we are who we say we are: a resolute, determined, freedom-loving country that won’t allow terrorism to dominate and consume the God-given rights of all mankind.
This is an epic struggle and the stakes are high. Just as we look back at the then-unpopular Civil War and are thankful to our countrymen for preserving the Union, when history looks back at this era a hundred years from now, our children’s grandchildren will thank our generation for standing firm and doing what was necessary to preserve America from the grasping claws of global terror. May God bless our soldiers and the USA.
Information from — historychannel.com, CSPAN