I've been laid low for the past several days by the flu, but today I managed to compose the following letter to the editor of the SB News Press. The idea that our continued presence in Iraq fuels the terrorists organizations that are the true threat to the West in its "war on terror" isn't new, but it's been lost in the debate about the "surge," with the result that no one seems to reflect on how the surge is actually Osama's briar patch.
"To the editor:
Among their arguments against withdrawal of U.S. forces from Iraq, Bush supporters contend that “if we pull our troops out of Iraq, we’ll be doing precisely what the terrorists want us to do.” While this may be true of some of Iraq’s disputing factions, it is not true of the terrorists who struck our soil on 9/11. That group, which, it is reported, now maintains affiliated cells inside Iraq and is growing in numbers throughout the world, has consistently said its goal is to destroy the world powers that it claims have long dominated and exploited the lands and people of Islam.
That group doesn't want the U.S. to leave Iraq, not at all. It wants to be able to continue to point to the violent U.S. occupation as proof of Western intent to dominate the region; to exploit U.S. troops’ transgressions there (murders, rapes, torture) to fuel their recruitment; and to bleed our nation’s fighting force and treasure. Osama bin Laden (from whatever cave he could be heard) was cheering Bush on as he announced the “surge” ten weeks ago.
If Bush’s “war on terror” is really that, why don't we pull of out Iraq so we can free ourselves to fight it, instead of feeding it?"