Bush Escalates World War III (January 15, 2007)

“The war in Vietnam is but a symptom of a far deeper malady within the American spirit, and if we ignore this sobering reality, we will find ourselves organizing ‘clergy and laymen concerned’ committees for the next generation.  They will be concerned about Guatemala and Peru.  They will be concerned about Thailand and Cambodia.  They will be concerned about Mozambique and South Africa.  We will be marching for these and a dozen other names and attending rallies without end unless there is a significant and profound change in American life and policy.  So such thoughts take us beyond Vietnam, but not beyond our calling as sons of the living God.”

–Martin Luther King, Jr., “Beyond Vietnam,” Clergy and Laity Concerned at Riverside Church, April 4, 1967.

“Succeeding in Iraq also requires defending its territorial integrity and stabilizing the region in the face of extremist challenge.  This begins with addressing Iran and Syria.  These two regimes are allowing terrorists and insurgents to use their territory to move in and out of Iraq.  Iran is providing material support for attacks on American troops.  We will disrupt the attacks on our forces.  We will interrupt the flow of support from Iran and Syria.  And we will seek out and destroy the networks providing advanced weaponry and training to our enemies in Iraq.

. . .

We are also taking other steps to bolster the security of Iraq and protect American interests in the Middle East.  I recently ordered the deployment of an additional carrier strike group to the region.  We will expand intelligence sharing and deploy Patriot air defense systems to reassure our friends and allies.  We will work with the governments of Turkey and Iraq to help them resolve problems along their border.  And we will work with others to prevent Iran from gaining nuclear weapons and dominating the region.”

–Emperor George W. Bush, Address to the nation, January 10, 2007.

Bush is escalating his own World War III.  Bush has lost in Iraq; with the ascendancy of the Shiites, Iran is winning in Iraq; Bush is now planning to lose in Iran.  What has not worked in Iraq is now going to be implemented in Iran and Syria.  There are two truths about the escalation surge in Iraq:

1) Those who have been wrong all along about Iraq are in favor of the escalation surge.

2) Those who have been right all along or have come to recognize what is right are against the escalation surge.  

Bush will get his additional troops despite and in spite of the efforts by some in Congress to reduce the American presence.  Any available Marines and Army troops should be deployed to Afghanistan; the National Guard to the Gulf (of Mexico).  The danger is that Bush is taking action that provides Iran with a moral and legal justification to escalate the situation in the Middle East.  Bush is seeking to provoke a plausible provocation for war.  He seeks to manufacture a “Gulf Of Tonkin” incident to justify doing what he intends to do without justification.  The United States must not invoke the doctrine of “hot pursuit” to justify an invasion into Iran by the additional troops being sent to Iraq.  The United States must defuse Iran without stepping foot on Iranian ground.  At this time, the United States is losing ground and is losing the high ground.

There must be a plan to get out of Iraq immediately because events will force America to “cut and run” without dignity later this year.  American units are likely to be pinned down and beyond anything but limited aerial support.  “Remember Saigon, April, 1975” must be the mantra in 2007.  When America is forced to abandon personnel and posts in Iraq, much of America’s technology also will fall into unfriendly hands.  The technology can be reverse-engineered and manufactured.  The United States should declare victory and redeploy to bases in the region.   

There are alternative approaches discussed in an e-ssay that references a lengthy essay by George S. McGovern and William R. Polk.  [See the e-ssay dated October 30].  The plan is discussed in their book, “Out of Iraq:  A Practical Plan for Withdrawal Now.”  The Iraqi Civil War cannot be stopped by American force or American forces.  [See the e-ssay dated April 17].  There is no course of action that will prevent bloodshed except possibly very subtle diplomacy involving every country and player in the Middle East to engage the Sunnis and Shiites and Kurds in a careful balance of power/terror.

Iran has issues with American actions taken in 1953; America with Iranian actions taken in 1979.  Despite this history of conflict and distrust, the situation in Iran requires a diplomatic not a military solution.  There is a percolating civil war within Iran.  The United States must not invade Iran and thereby unite the populace against the invader.  The U.S. must enlist the support of the largely young and secular population in Iran that prefers to carry an iPod rather than an AK, to use a cell phone to text messages rather than to trigger bombs, and to drive a Honda rather than to dynamite a Hummer.  That is the way to neutralize the militant forces in Iran and to bring some stability to the Middle East and even Iraq.  Out-think, out-wit and out-maneuver.

Bumper sticker of the week:

Iran is Persian for Vietnam

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