Sunday, June 12, 2005

Positive out come of war in IRAQ? I hope this gentleman is correct.

I have seen many good ideas put forth about why taking on Iraq is a good strategy, and how different approaches to the other members of the "axis of evil" are appropriate. I think there is something more profound happening in the Bush administration, a policy change whose outlines are now appearing and whose scope is breathtaking in its sweep.
Prior to 9/11, Bush was considered an isolationist. There were worries about America disengaging from the rest of the world. Folks, that is exactly where the endgame of the current global strategy is leading. President Bush and his advisors are cutting the Gordian knots which tie the US into permanent global deployment.
We've got large numbers of troops pinned down in the Middle East. Steven den Beste has already shown how the conquest of Iraq removes the reason for basing large numbers of forces in the Middle East. Troops can be withdrawn from Saudi Arabia, the Emirates, Kuwait, Turkey and god knows where else. Remove Saddam and there is suddenly no need for it. True, it will take some years to get Iraq Inc up and running the way we got Japan Inc going 50 years ago, but it will happen.
With Iran moving towards liberalization; with Iraq a capitalist democracy and with the Russians building a huge new oil terminal in Murmansk for sales to America, we not only get cheap oil... we undermine the very tool which allows Saudi's to support billion dollar terrorist movements.
And then there are the Cold War leftovers in Europe... Another commentator I've read recently - where I unfortuneately do not recall - has suggested Rumsfeld wants to return the US to its classical military stance: a sea power. Maritime powers do not need large numbers of troops permanently based around the world. They only need ports for repair and refueling.
Where else are we pinned down? Korea... 37,000 Americans in harms way on that hellish armistice line. It is a no-man's land of a half century old war that has never ended. Rumsfeld's latest move in Korea is telling. US troops are to be pulled back. They will no longer be the Korean's border canary.
SecDef Rumsfeld has stated in a number of recent public appearances South Korea has an economic capacity over thirty times that of North Korea and should be able to defend itself. He has suggestd it would be better for our soldiers and their families if they were based at home rather than in long overseas rotations.
In each area where there are large permanent American troop deployments, we see disengagement. It might take a war in at least one case to get us extricated. We are getting extricated nonetheless.
There is even a bonus prize. The UN is about to self-destruct. Put it all together and project ten years into the future. We see an America with a powerful naval and air force; with relatively few soldiers based outside the nation. An America looking out for its' own interests and finally rid of most of the "entangling alliances" brought about by World War II and its' aftermath.
We're at the start not of Empire, but of the return to Fortress America... with a global reach via naval and air capacity to handle anyone who comes to our shores looking for trouble.
I think I could live with that.

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