Did the Surge Work?
Why Barack Obama bothers with the likes of loofa-loving Bill O’Reilly is beyond me. Last night, Obama let the blowhard jam him on the subject of the surge. If you haven’t noticed, the surge is the right’s new holy grail. Not the real war in Iraq, mind you, or its increasingly likely outcome--but just the surge. The McCains and O’Reillys want everyone--particularly war critics--to admit that “the surge worked.”
This sort of fetish is hardly novel. There are militarists among us who claim that the U.S. won the Vietnam War. Never mind that our enemy chased us out, beat our puppet army, took over the country and have been running it for three decades. Forget that. These guys can prove to you that the American military won every battle. And that means we won the war.
In recent weeks, our chosen prime minister of Iraq and the great majority of their parliament has given us notice that they want to see the backs of our soldiery asap. Their demand is backed by innumerable polls in which great majorities of Iraqis say exactly the same thing: Yankees Go Home!
If you look at the politics of the situation, Iraq has every reason to extricate itself from the clutches of the American empire and go about its potentially fabulously lucrative business on its own. Its politicians have been maneuvering to do exactly that while their single-minded U.S. patrons have been concentrating on killing as many Iraqis as they can before they kill each other. (See my July 22 blog, “Iraq Going, Going, Gone”).
But that’s Greek (not to say Arabic) to O’Reilly, McCain and company. They simply want celebration of the surge and acclamation of our forthcoming “victory” in Iraq. What’s actually happening in the country is Halliburton and Chevron’s problem.
There’s a purported John Stuart Mill quote floating around the net to the effect that not all stupidos are conservatives, but that most conservatives are stupidos. The “surge” stricture adds to the evidence.