A poster at Jihad Watch recently took issue with some comments I made by saying, “No politician can stand before the people and say they want to pull out of Iraq so that the Muslims will slaughter each other. ”
I don’t expect any politician to say that, so baldly. I never did. I expect them to say something like “We have done quite enough for the Iraqis. We freed them from a monstrous regime. That regime was in power for 35 years, and that regime attacked two of its neighbors — one Shi’a, Iran, and one Sunni, Kuwait. That regime ordered the mass slaughter of both Kurds and Shi’a Muslims. That regime was prepared to continue for another 35 years. Saddam Hussein and his sons and his collaborators were moral monsters, and they are now permanently removed from the scene. We brought an experiment in democratic elections, and should the people in Iraq wish to repeat the experiment, if they wish to entrust their destiny to the expressed will of the people — that is, themselves — we will be satisfied, but of course it is their decision.
“So far we have lost more than 3,200 men. We have had nearly 25,000 men wounded, many with wounds that will require us to take care of them for their lives. We have spent billions of dollars, and will spend billions more once the committed costs of taking care of those wounded for their lives, and of replacing the equipment that, from the stores of both the regular army and the National Guard, have been used up at such a terrific rate, are calculated. Those costs include trucks and Humvees and helicopters and planes that have been damaged in war and have also suffered because the desert conditions degrade such equipment at a terrifically accelerated rate. We have gone around the world and obtained nearly $100 billion in debt cancellation from the countries of the West, and we still await a promise by the Arab creditors that they, too, will cancel the debts incurred by Iraq under that monstrous regime of Saddam Hussein.
“We have done all we could, and much more. We have remained in Iraq now, for more than four years. We have, that is, been at war on behalf of the people of Iraq, in order to liberate them from a despot and so that they could get unused to the habit of submitting to despotism, and begin to experience some notion of democracy. This is longer than we were at war during the Revolutionary War, or the Civil War, or World War I, or World War II, or the war in Korea. It is now time — some would say it is long past time — for the people in Iraq to decide if they are indeed the people in Iraq, or if they are the “Iraqi people.”
“We cannot stay to make that decision for them. We cannot stay to fight the battles of this side against that side, or that side against this side. That would be a terrible thing to expect us to do. We will not do it.
“I now declare that American forces will be withdrawing from Iraq, starting May 1, 2007. That withdrawal does not depend on what the Iraqi government tells us it wants. We will do what the American people tell us they want, rather, and it has told us, in any number of ways, that it wants us out of Iraq.
“Our country is a democracy. Democracy is not defined only by the election results. Between elections, those who have been elected have a duty to take the pulse of the nation. Only a madman could ignore the fact that 3/4 of this nation wants our troops out of Iraq and many of those people want those troops out today, or yesterday. The opinion polls show that this is not close, not nearly. Those against remaining in Iraq outnumber those who have not declared themselves against by a margin of nearly 3 to 1. That is simply too great to ignore. If it were to be ignored, this country would no longer seem to be a democracy, but would rather be akin to a runaway train, with a mad engineer who refuses to stop even as the passengers pull the cords and scream at the top of their lungs.”
Something like that will do nicely, thank you.
It has a virtue, the little speech I just composed above. It is unlike the utter nonsense we have heard about “bringing freedom” to “ordinary moms and dads” in the Middle East, unlike the misguided phrase “war on terror,” unlike the cheapness of those warnings about those who, opposed to the war, have been stupidly described as merely wanting to “cut and run.” It is unlike those who now use this idiotic phrase, “if we don’t fight them over there, they will follow us home.” (Can anyone say that phrase and not be an idiot?) There are many people in this country who are fully aware of the menace of Islam, of the Jihad. They are fully aware of the weapons of Jihad that might be fought better, in a more sensible and effective way, if we were out of Iraq and allowed the fissures, sectarian and ethnic, to take their natural course within Iraq and among Iraq’s Muslim neighbors, so as to allow us to concentrate on many other things: ending the Jizyah of foreign aid to all Muslim states, meeting with NATO allies to discuss the security threats that arise from a growing Muslim population in Western Europe, encouraging widespread publicity given to the St. Petersburg Declaration and beaming into Muslim lands the words and ideas of Ibn Warraq, Ali Sina, Wafa Sultan, Ayaan Hirsi Ali, and all the others who so terrify the fake “moderate” Muslims — because unlike them, the people who took part in the St. Petersburg deliberations are the real, and not the phony, thing.
And then there is the possibility of seizing southern Sudan and Darfur, until such time as a referendum on independence can he held. How hard would it be to destroy the Sudanese air force, and all of those helicopters that support the Janjaweed? How many American soldiers would it take to seize and hold that area, and thereby to send a signal to black African Christians that they will not be abandoned, and that the slow march of Islam down from Egypt through Sudan with Ethiopia as the big prize (“Christian” Ethiopia), a country that Egypt wishes to islamize and insure that it never gets to divert the headwaters of the Nile, will not be allowed to continue? How many men? A few thousand, greeted by grateful black Africans? And what would the government of Egypt, what would the Arab League, do then? Declare it has a divine right to kill black Africans, either because they are non-Muslim as in the southern Sudan, or because they are non-Arabs, as in Darfur?
And finally there is Iran. And Iran must be dealt with, and can only be dealt with, with the American troops out of Iraq, and with Iraq itself in a state of confusion. The Iranian government wants the Americans to stay. It wants them there, and it wants to be able to keep them tied down there and subject to low-level but constant assault. This fits Iranian policy. Some argue otherwise, and think the American presence somehow scares Iran. But this just shows how silly they are about the usefulness of those forces, their mobility, their relative freedom from attack.
Iran must be dealt with from afar. Offshore, way offshore, and from the sky. It can be done, and must.