Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Six months to eternity

By Michael J.W. Stickings

We knew this was coming. The surge has not worked (or only worked in a temporary and limited way), contrary to the claims of the warmongers, but Petraeus wants more time -- in fact, he wants six more months, just like it was all about six months last year. It's all part of what I've called "the surge deception," with Bush and Petraeus and the rest of the warmongers changing the rules of the game while the game is already underway, which is to say, altering the timelines, redefining the definition of success, and reestablishing the very purpose of the surge. Remember when the goal was political reconciliation and the long-term stability of the government in Baghdad? Remember when last September was the key date, before it wasn't anymore?

And now they want more time?

Basically, I'm with Hullabaloo's dday on this:

As Andrew Bacevich said the other day, this was actually the real goal of the surge -- to keep our troops stuck in Iraq for as long as possible, so the occupation could be passed off to the next President. The idea was to create enough security success in the short-term by flooding the zone with troops to offer a propaganda victory, to allow the neocon wags to sputter "We're winning!" and forestall the inevitable drawdown. Now, death tolls are actually rising again, and the Shiite militia cease-fire could be ending. But Iraq has moved off the front page, and the endless shouts of victory from the right have dampened any effect of this new data. And the warhawks are essentially running interference for those like Bush and Petraeus who are simply trying to prolong matters.

The truth about Iraq needs to be told -- and needs to return to the front pages. If not, and if Iraq is not the major issue this year we though it would be (and it may not be, what with the recession and all), the warmongers' strategy of washing their hands of their self-made disaster may prove far more successful than their surge.

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