Thursday, November 30, 2006

Why the War was Wrong, Part the Fifth

If the war in Iraq fails, it will have been wrong.

If the war in Iraq fails, it will fail because governments and peoples, West and East, have willed it to fail.

The war will have been/will be wrong because governments and peoples wanted it to be wrong, and for no other reason.


Dave said...

I think it's simpler than that. The whole war has been a demonstration of the annoying business aphorism "Most people don't plan to fail, they fail to plan." (John L. Beckley, apparently, though I had to look it up)

The whole thing was bollocksed up before it ever started, because the architects of the campaign mistook tactical goals for strategic outcomes, failed to account for a known lack of local intelligence, failed to secure credible support from the international community (okay, the UK counts, but Spain and Australia and some Japanese engineers really really don't), failed to adequately resource the operation despite the recommendations of their own experts and (continuously) failed to respond to ground reports that contradicted their expectations.

Right or wrong, it failed because it crossed the line from courageous adventurism to reckless stupidity before the first step was taken.

(I'll try to rein the rant in, there, but thanks for helping me relocate my white hot core of outrage. I'd been starting to get a bit worried about it).

Dr. Clam said...

Nah. You might remember that article by Hillel Halkin I circulated about the time of the invasion- basically, that whatever the pros and cons of the invasions, once the die was cast the world as a whole had a duty to strive for its success? If that had happened, it could have de-bollocksed even the most lamentable lack of a plan.

I must also- feebly, with flickering embers of optimism- reject your characterisation 'it failed': it may fail, and it is looking more likely every day, but I don't think it is fair to say that it has yet.

Last I heard Italy had suffered of the order of thirty combat deaths in Iraq. Ditto Poland. They are both about as populous as the UK. Practically every country in Eastern and Central Europe had/has troops there. In the article I read about the psycho marines who were meant to be guarding a dam but massacred civilians and by now, with any luck, have been put down like rabid dogs, it mentioned in passing that they shared the dam-guarding duties with a contingent from Azerbaijan. Also nothing would have been possible without the strong logistical support of the Gulf States, who had reasons of their own for wanting Saddam removed. That is credible support. China, Russia, and Old Europe do not a international community make.