American Elephants


The Iraq War is Over. by The Elephant's Child
November 24, 2008, 4:58 pm
Filed under: History, Iraq, Military, Terrorism | Tags: , , ,

That’s what Michael Yon reports today in the New York Post.  Michael Yon has been reporting on the War on Terror since December 2004 at Michaelyon-online.com. His latest book is  Moment of Truth in Iraq , and I highly recommend it.  The civil war, he says, is completely over. Muqtada al-Sadr has lost a lot of support among the Shia.  Many view him as one whose influence derives solely from respect for his father.

The Iraqi Army continues to grow stronger and more professional by the month. Even the National Police, who last year were thought of as militia members in uniform and drew attacks, are slowly gaining acceptance and respect.  U.S. soldiers’ mentoring is working, and bonds of trust are being built between U.S. and Iraqi soldiers, police and citizens.  “The United States”, says Yon, “has a new ally in Iraq.  And if both sides continue to nurture this bond, it will create a permanent partnership of mutual benefit.”

Iraqis are tired of war and ready to get back to school, to business and to living life as it should be.

Do read the whole short article. The media have lost interest in Iraq, and prefer to think of it, if they think of it at all, as Bush’s failed war.  It is instead, a great Bush success.  It’s hard now to remember what an awful situation Iraq was in 2003.

I remember the Iraqis voting for the first time. We all remember the purple fingers. U.S. soldiers guarding the Iraqis lined up to enter the polling place noted a very pregnant Iraqi woman in line.  She went into labor while she waited in line, and a U.S. Medic came to her aid, delivered the baby, and the woman planted the baby in the soldier’s arms, and went in to vote.
Do not belittle Iraqi democracy. A people who endured the torture, the terror and brutality of a tyrant like Saddam Hussein could teach us a few things about the importance of the right to vote.


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One time nineteen gang members crashed their cars in my yard. One car made both of my tool sheds collapse, and the other one destroyed one side of my pentagonal gazebo. The police, with the help of a local vigilante group called the “Northern Alliance” scattered the gang members out of Portland and forced them to take refuge over the Gresham border.

Then the police chief told all his officers to start tearing up my yard and put in a miniature golf course. When I asked what was going on the police chief said it would take a long time and be a lot of hard work, but my front yard was now the central front on the Fight Against Gangs.

And it wasn’t cheap. He keep sending me “continuing resolutions” so I could keep the money flowing and the work moving forward. But accidents kept happening which sometimes burned up my cats and dogs. The police chief blamed this on “friendly fire.”

After three years my yard still didn’t look anything like a Goofy Golf course, so I fired the construction committee and hired people with (I foolishly assumed) a different philosophy on how to deal with gangs. I thought they would provide better oversight. The police chief was upset. He accused me of wanting to “cut and run” which I suppose is fair, but no one asked me if I wanted my yard turned into a golf course in the first place!

In a pique, the police chief doubled the monthly bill because he wanted to “surge” the construction of my Goofy Golf course. He made his officers work overtime and even cancelled their scheduled retirement so the work could continue. And no matter how many times I begged the construction oversight committee to set a timeline for the completion of the work, they wouldn’t do it, because they feared other voters might say they were soft on gangs.

So it came down to a replacement police chief. One of them called himself a mavericky maverick but he was 250 years old and he said, “Let me give you some straight talk my little lesbian friend. If we stop building the Goofy Golf course in your front yard, the gangs win. And the timelines offered by my inexperienced opponent are nothing more than surrender dates. So there really is no choice but to elect me. I will keep working on your golf course for a hundred years if that’s what it takes.”

The other guy running for police chief said he never agreed to build the mini golf course in the first place, and if he was elected, he would start shifting officers from my yard to the border with Gresham to go after, you know, actual gangs. This was the first police chief election in which I was able to participate. It was a very difficult choice, but I had to go with the younger guy.

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Comment by Ruby Red

Your cute little allegory would work better if you knew what you were talking about. Try some serious reading. Kenneth Pollack’s “The Threatening Storm” is a good look at the initial situation. Arthur Herman had an excellent essay on why the War in Iraq was necessary in Commentary Magazine, and Douglas Feith’s “War and Decision” is an excellent look inside the Pentagon as the war began.Highly recommended.

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Comment by The Elephant's Child

[…] us safe, at great peril and sacrifice. And I am so thankful and happy that they have prevailed and won the war in Iraq, and achieved great victories in […]

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Pingback by Be Thankful! « American Elephants




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