Why Victory In Iraq?

What winning in Iraq will mean, and what will it look like?  This answers some questions posed by Rick at RicksBlog concerning the war in Iraq.   The war in Iraq is what I call the Iraqi front in the global war on terror.   What follows is the answer to those questions.  

Israel has been fighting Arabs for over half a century and still doesn’t have peace. We are entering our fifth year in Iraq. How can we expect peace in another year or two?

To the impatient and the microwave/video-game-war generation I say, if what it takes to make future generations safe from radical Islam is one or two, or five more years, then you’ll know what it costs to defend us and what it costs to defend freedom in our time.   It’s such a cliche but in this case, is also true, freedom is not free.

Time is on the side of the insurgents – or what Bush calls “terrorists” or what some might label “freedom fighters”. We can’t kill them all.

Some of the enemy looks like this.This picture gives a whole new meaning to the term ‘freedom fighters.’ The “some who might label” terrorists as “freedom fighters” are part of the problem, if not the terrorists themselves.  They don’t want freedom.  They say as much all the time.  The only freedom I’ve heard them advocate is the freedom to kill Americans. 

Here’s the administrations view of the three stages of victory in Iraq, from the blog.

Short term, Iraq is making steady progress in fighting terrorists, meeting political milestones, building democratic institutions, and standing up security forces.

Medium term, Iraq is in the lead defeating terrorists and providing its own security, with a fully constitutional government in place, and on its way to achieving its economic potential.

Longer term, Iraq is peaceful, united, stable, and secure, well integrated into the international community, and a full partner in the global war on terrorism.

As far as what victory in Iraq would look like? First of all, don’t expect it to be over in a year or two. The GWOT will last decades. We waited almost a decade before responding effectively, which didn’t help us.

Then, don’t expect that WE are going to kill all the terrorists because WE won’t. It’s the governments of the countries the terrorists operate in and train in that will do the killing every time they raise their ugly head. It’s a different war than any other we’ve been in for sure.

As far as similarity to Vietnam goes, it is similar in that the anti-war groups of the 60’s are now in positions of power and attempting to relive the glory days by micro-managing the war until it cannot be won, like what happened in Vietnam. To this bunch, a loss will be perceived as a victory, just like Vietnam.

And another thing, :) , in Vietnam, the commies did not have as their goal the desire to kill all ‘infidels’ (Americans) and everyone else that didn’t have the same view of ‘Islam’ as they. They’ve already demonstrated how viscous they can be.

IMHO, the only question is not what victory in Iraq is, but how many dead Americans are acceptable before you decide to deal with the problem?

This war won’t be won by playing defense. It’s going to take nations around the world to be on offense.