Saturday, August 21, 2010

Iraq-Will It Be The Legacy Of Obama Or Palin?

I voted Republican for the first time in my life in 2008 after supporting as a teen and voting as an adult for every Democratic party nominee since Stevenson in 1956. These early years were a time of massive struggle for equality for Blacks and women, for a rightful share in prosperity for workers and a time of raised social consciousness for youth. The lofty rhetoric of Stevenson, the inspiration of a new generation with Kennedy, and the rise of the civil rights movement under Johnson's watch reinforced a natural tendency to liberalism especially as I was living in New York City.

It is not that one moves from liberal to conservative necessarily because one changes ones views on the important issues, rather it is because those issues have been settled to enough of a degree that further agitation for them on the previous heady level is perhaps counter productive.

Thus in 2008 there was, to my mind, little difference between the two parties on social issues such as the rights of minorities and women-that those issues need supporting by all is settled to a large degree. Right up until the economic crisis hit late in the 2008 campaign there was little perceived difference in any major degree on economic matters either. It was in foreign policy and specifically the Iraq/Afghanistan wars where the major differences lay.

In looking at the Iraq situation, the massive dislocation, loss of life, both  Iraqi and American (and allies) the destruction of infrastructure and the lack of a political structure to govern the country, it appeared to me be be immoral for America to even consider abandoning the Iraqi people to an unknown fate.

Whether or not the decision to invade was right or wrong, was based on faulty intelligence or outright deception, was not the over arching concern. The facts are that the decision was made, massive casualties resulted and Iraq is in a perilous situation. The choice was clear-McCain/Palin with a commitment to staying the course beyond  "victory' for America, but staying for as long as took to see a functioning, popular, honest Iraqi government in place .

The Obama/Biden alternative was an ending to the war as soon as possible, the leaving of a minimum amount of troops behind in an "advisory' capacity, with no commitment to the long term assistance in nation building which will be required to ensure stability, and that sectarian violence is ended. To see also that there is an equitable distribution of resources amongst the religious and ethnic groupings and  there is power sharing after free and fair elections.

American has been holding the peace in Korea for 60 years.This commitment to stop aggression has seen a stable  prosperous ally grow, and is a tribute to the various administrations  who have supported the Korean people.Why should our commitment to the Iraqi people be any less than the Koreans?  The possible aggressors are internal in the case of Iraq (and possibly external) but the possibility of descent into chaos is very much there and needs to be guarded against for as long as it takes and with whatever resources in men and material it takes.

The Obama administration has begun the process of abandoning the Iraqi people to their fate. To do so is unacceptable and the  possibility of this happening was enough to change a lifetime of voting habits for me. A McCain/Palin administration would never  allow the abandonment of Iraq to happen and I look forward to a Palin administration which will be solidly committed to Iraq, Israel and Afghanistan  protecting them and the USA.

If before the election of the next, hopefully Palin led, Republican administration which will save and succour Iraq, the country descends into the maelstrom of ethnic violence, dictatorship or fundamentalism, the Obama administration that allowed that scenario would be forever castigated as a waster of American and Iraqi blood, treasure and nationhood-this must not be allowed to happen on the most clear of moral grounds.

As for the possibility of The Obama administration through the offices of Senator Kerry handing over Afghanistan to the Taliban in exchange for them promising to be good little boys as soon as the US troops leave, well the first woman to be stoned to death under the new improved Taliban government will be sheeted home to the conscience, or lack of it, of those who abandoned her and her country to be sacrificed on the altar of the radical left of the Democratic party.

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