June 28th, 2005at 10:02am Posted by Eli
Some very good letters to the NYT today on the subject of Iraq. Some of my favorite bits:
All we hear is that there is no timetable and that we want a free and democratic Iraq. That is not a plan. That is a wish. Judging from this administration’s actions in Iraq, the plan is not to have a plan, to send in troops but not anticipate their needs or those of the Iraqis, and to tell people things are getting better while everyone sees a deteriorating quagmire.
It really is amazing how even now the administration appears to have no plan other than to just keep scrounging to maintain troop levels and hope that something good eventually happens.
It’s true, as the White House argues, that telling an enemy when you plan to leave gives the enemy an opportunity to wait you out. But this is true only if the enemy can wait you out. The White House admits that the enemy can wait us out, a fact that contradicts its assertion that there is “steady and substantial progress” in defeating the insurgents.
If we were making such progress, and if the ranks of the insurgents were limited, we could indeed sketch out a rough timetable. The facts are that we are still at war in Iraq and that the White House has no workable plan to defeat the insurgency.
Why has no-one pointed this out before? (If they have, I totally missed it) If the insurgency really is in its “last throes,” why should we care about unveiling a timetable for withdrawal? Can we get Reid and Dean to start hammering at this point, please?