Saturday, November 19, 2005

Rep. Murtha Unleashes War Debate

U.S. Representative John Murtha (D-PA) made some very stunning remarks on in Washington the other day. In essence, the decorated Vietnam war veteran and senior House member demanded that, unless a concrete strategy and timetable for U.S. involvement in Iraq is laid out and implemented by the Bush administration in short order, the U.S. should withdraw all of its troops within six months. No ifs, ands or buts. Either find a way to win the war - and do it - or come home.

Needless to say, Rep. Murtha's position unleashed a firestorm of debate on Capitol Hill. In fact, some Democrats and Republicans in the House nearly came to blows over a Republican House member's accusations of cowardice.

While such hostility on Capitol Hill has been rare over the nearly three years since the U.S. and its token coalition forces invaded Iraq early in 2003, perhaps it's about time that we begin to see some passion from our lawmakers, many of whom now believe that they were duped into supporting the war effort in the first place.

Murtha's overt call for troop withdrawal has sparked a debate that needs to happen. In fact, it's long overdue. While it may not actually result in the immediate withdrawal of U.S. forces, it may bring about a much-needed discussion of why we are there and what we are trying to accomplish. And this is where the issue begins to get really, really sticky.

Clearly the Bush administration and, in particular, the neo-conservatives ensconced at the Pentagon, have plans for the military beyond just Iraq. Iraq gives them a central base of operations from which to intimidate and potentially attack surrounding regimes in countries such as Iran and Syria. To bring the troops home would completely unravel their grand plans, and I don't think they're going to give in so easily.

There's no question that Rep. Murtha's points should be well-taken. Either implement a strategy to win the conflict in quick fashion or get the hell out. We didn't do that in Vietnam, and we all know how that turned out.

But I go back to the neo-con agenda, which isn't to win quickly and get out. They have no intentions of leaving the area militarily. In fact, a quagmire, per se, suits their aims as well as anything, along with a President and Vice President who bait their own constituents - the American people - with the "Americans don't run and hide" or "Americans don't give up" propaganda. Consequently, we're forced to remain indefinitely.

We have to come to the realization that this is not, in fact, a war. It is an elaborate mind game. And the neo-cons must control the minds of Americans in order to effect their grand vision for the Middle East... and the world. Even the other key players in the Middle East, notably Saudi Arabia and Israel, know that their respective futures are in doubt without direct U.S. involvement in the region. The attacks of 9/11 happened for a reason. Never underestimate that as the rest of the neo-con agenda unfolds and the mind game continues.


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