It’s the Iraqis, Stupid.

TPMtv gives us the layout of John McCain’s devolving concept of American troop levels in Iraq, from liberating and leaving to maybe staying as a small force to staying ala Germany for a hundred years. It should be noted, by the way, that we have not been in Germany for a hundred years just yet – to say nothing of a thousand, or ten thousand – so whether or not that is an attainable goal remains to be seen:

Talking Points Memo

In today’s episode of TPMtv, we go back to the TPM video archives to put the whole back and forth on the Korea m
odel together. Let’s go to the tape …

But in every case, John McCain consistently makes the point that, “it’s not troop levels, it’s casualties.” Because if American soldiers aren’t dying, the American people won’t mind their presence anywhere. This shortsightedly political rhetoric ignores a very basic premise of occupation: it will not be the opinions of the American public that will determine that all-important casualty rate, but the opinions of the Iraqis, whose voice is noticeably absent from McCain’s argument.

And if Iraqis do not want long-term American presence in their country – as indeed, they have voiced many times over – then no amount of political gamesmanship here at home nor tactical maneuvering in Iraq will produce anything less than consistent casualties.

But, hey! I’m not a presidential candidate with “experience,” so what the hell do I know?


Clinton: Let’s “Totally Obliterate” Iran

OK, Dems, listen the fuck up: Clinton has decided to lay down the gauntlet for Iran.  She says that if Iran attacks Israel, she will as president “totally obliterate them.”  I saw this in a preview of the interview last night and couldn’t believe my ears.  Have Hillary Clinton and Joe Lieberman mind melded, or what?

This is in addition to making the claim that she would intervene if any two countries got into a war in the Middle East.  Her Middle East Shield proposal that went without notice in the media.  Is this what we’re hoping to elect to the presidency?  Is this what we want?


Covering His Ears and Stamping His Feet

As the situation in Iraq degrades towards civil war, The Decider continues to declare progress being made. There is not a whit of recognition, nor will there be for months, that the situation is getting close to out of control. As TPM reports, Baghdad police are leaving in droves and Iraqi soldiers (who, according to the Bush Administration, are fighting in Basra) are back-filling those positions. Meanwhile, our troops are once again filling in the front lines of the Iraqi Civil War:

McClatchy Washington Bureau | 03/27/2008 | Bush: Iraq is returning to normal

President Bush, saying that “normalcy is returning back to Iraq,” argued Thursday that last year’s U.S. troop “surge” has improved Iraq’s security to the point where political and economic progress are blossoming as well.