John McCain is basing much of his presidential campaign on Iraq. He has strongly supported Bush's escalation, or "surge," which has failed in its purpose: providing a political agreement among the three large sectarian groups in the country. Without that progress the surge has failed (someone please clue in Jim Gerlach about this, too). McCain said this yesterday while campaigning in Florida:
"If we surrender and wave a white flag, like Senator Clinton wants to do, and withdraw, as Governor Romney wanted to do, then there will be chaos, genocide, and the cost of American blood and treasure would be dramatically higher."
I have news for Sen. McCain: that already happened and it happened because we invaded Iraq with no legal justification under international law. Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan called the U.S. invasion illegal. It was.
We lost this war early on because of massive policy failures by President Bush. Disbanding the Iraqi Army, deBaathification and our refusal to form an early governing coalition including Iraqis doomed this as surely as the lack of planning for a transition to civil government following the regime change. Bush never deployed enough troops and refused all advice to do so until he initiated his "surge." We aren't surrendering by withdrawing, we're ending our occupation.
John McCain does not want to end our occupation. He spoke about this in New Hampshire and said he envisions American troops remaining in Iraq for 100 years, maybe more. The violence in Iraq began because of our foreign occupation. We initiated a rebellion against our presence just as we invited the attacks by Al Qaeda by stationing troops in their Holy Land. We are culturally blind to the effects of our policies on these peoples so we continue to pay the cost of these failures.
Electing John McCain will perpetuate the failed policies of George W. Bush. It means maintaining the foreign policy status quo, more American bloodshed for nothing and more of our treasure drained away in the deserts of Iraq. 70% of Americans want this war and occupation ended. John McCain's (or any of the others) nomination at the Republican National Convention spells doom for the GOP next November. Combining their failed economic policies with their failed foreign policies, disturbing signs of global warming made worse by their denial of the problem all mean deep coattails for Democrats.