Thursday, August 18, 2005

The logic of withdrawal

The debate over withdrawal of our troops from Iraq has been cast by the Bushovics as "stay the course" versus "cut and run." Tragically, this has become the standard of discourse on the topic also, so that most Democratic politicians are buying into it, with H. Clinton and Joe Biden (two likely presidential candidates in 2006) calling for more troops in Iraq, not withdrawal. This thinking will also infect the upcoming midterm elections, probably, so that the American people will be left without a meaningful discourse on the possibility of immediate, or even early, withdrawal.

Such discourse is mandatory in a democracy, certainly over a war that has proven so disastrous and has been shown to have been the product of a fraudulent premise. And so it's heartening to find this essay, a sensible rationale for immediate withdrawal, stated in terms that demonstrate that it may be in America's interest to pull out now, as a strategic matter, not "just" as a moral one. Maybe, so clothed, the debate may find favor with politicians, who seem to prefer strategy to morality.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Baby on board?

No, I don't think so. Not if the baby's name is on the "no-fly" list.

Switzerland is so cool

They've frozen a deal to send some American-made armored personnel carriers to Iraq until they have assurances that they will be used only in noncombat situations. Neutrality rocks and democracy rules.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Intermittent outrage

It's true that lately my blogging has been sporadic. I took a long trip into the wilds of NW United States and Canada and blessedly left my 'puter in its bag; and on my return to SB was confronted with the need to find a new rental, which I've now accomplished and this post is authored from my new digs. So, while our soldiers don't have the luxury of being distracted by such silly excursions, I admit I have been.

However, I've still been doing my demonstrating, my tiny effort at informing those who pass by my streetside sign of the unending and lately mushrooming (to use Condi's word) US casualties in Iraq. And lately here's what I've experienced.

Last Saturday's march up and down State Street in SB was not only well received by the shoppers and tourists of this vacation town, but was positively uplifting. We got ceaseless honks and hoots and cordial expressions of gratitude--the strongest surge of support for our message, our chants and signs calling for an end to the Iraq war and the impeachment of Bush/Cheney that we've ever experienced in our two-plus years of weekly marching.

On the other hand, during my Sunday afternoon vigil, where I hold out my sign for an hour to the vehicular and foot traffic at the base of Stearns Wharf in SB, the reaction was muted, almost silent, as in embarrassed silence. Maybe it was Sunday, maybe it was because most folks were in a hurry to "do" their touristy stuff before they had to head back to LA...whatever. But silence, silence so constant it felt conspiratorial.

The United States has waged war, has invaded and is now occupying another foreign nation. Thousands of human beings were killed in the process, billions of dollars of destruction was wrought, millions of lives were eternally altered, all because of the faulty decision of a cadre of leaders "elected" by us to protect us from an enemy that is undaunted in its desire--and ability--to do us great harm.

I ask, and I'm not alone in asking, WHERE'S THE OUTRAGE? WHERE THE FUCK IS THE OUTRAGE?