Brilliant proposition, but there is a third “mine” – undermine.
George Bush has trapped America into a field of all three mines. Bush stepped on the first when he took the country war without any intellectual, historical or even strategic homework. The invasion was armed with nothing more substantial than a tactical military plan, which ended up in tatters within three months. Bush could have escaped if he had gotten out in those first hundred days, leaving Iraq to Iraqis.
A separate mine had already gone off when Saddam Hussein's foot was forcibly lifted, but it needed post-Saddam Iraqis, of all persuasions, to find their way through the debris. Bush's hubris set in even before the first cloud of smoke cleared. He undermined the American people, extracting a savage price in both American and Iraqi blood.
How do you defuse Iraq? The nature of the conflict is often misunderstood, since media presence is simply not widespread enough to offer clarity. Media reaches the scene after the event, when it reaches it at all, which is rarely. There are no set-piece battles; America would have won such a war long ago. The insurgency – which is planned by men who understand power and the local rules of the game – has two missions: to corrode morale wherever Occupation troops have a "safe" haven. This is done either through sabotage or a constant mortar barrage from points outside the reach of Anglo-American troops.
And second, to use its mobility to wear down the Occupation asymmetrically. While the Occupation may have helicopters, the insurgency can move anywhere in the country among the population. The first can't match the second. Occupation troops patrol and go back to their bases. The insurgency can strike and then melt away. How does a stressed-out patrol find a target in a melting pot? Forget about stepping on one mine: the insurgency has turned the Occupation into an over-stretched centipede that cannot negotiate any of its feet through the mine field.
If you want to defuse the situation, the first priority is to remove the cause that lights the fuse. Occupation troops have lit many fuses. America already has floating bases called nuclear carriers in the Gulf, and stationary bases in Qatar, Jordan and Saudi Arabia. If these cannot meet the nation’s "security" requirements in the region, then a million troops in Iraq will not make America more secure. Yes, the mine might go off when the foot is lifted, but at least it will be only that mine, and the Iraqis will be able to find a way out of the debris. They have a vested interest in stability.
The American presence breeds fresh mines each day. That is how America has undermined itself.
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