DEMANDING & IMPOSING CONSTITUTIONAL DEMOCRACY:
THE U.S. MILITARY PRESENCE IN IRAQ
By Alan Caruba
America’s military power is such that no nation would challenge it. This did not occur by accident. It is a policy that reflects both the Cold War and the Vietnam experience.
The Iraq war was not about expanding territory. It was about expanding constitutional democracy. The fundamental theory for the war was predicated on the belief that the Middle East would remain an endless cesspool of terrorism and strife. Unless something was done to introduce some movement toward constitutional democracy, the rule of law, freedom, and human rights, the U.S.A. could count on more 9-11 attacks. (It is useful to note there have been no such attacks since.)
Having destroyed al-Qa'ida’s base of operations in Afghanistan, it was fairly obvious to people like myself that President Bush would find a reason to invade Iraq. You didn’t have to be a genius to figure this out. You only needed to look at a map of the Middle East. Iraq, centrally located, would allow pre-positioned troops to bring pressure on Iran, Syria, Pakistan, and Saudi Arabia. They could also provide protection for Jordan and, of course, Israel. The other Persian Gulf nations that had thrown in their lot with us would also be afforded protection.
A good deal for everyone, just so long as they understand that (1) the days of the ayatollahs are numbered, along with Syria’s dictator, and (2) the last day for "constitutional" monarchies was just around the corner. In short, democratize and constitutionalize or face the wrath of the U.S.A.. Why? Because genuine constitutional democracies are far more stable nation-states than those under other types of political regimes. Constitutional democratic states have far less incentive to go to war.
Yes, we need and want the oil that comes out of the Middle East region, but what we mostly want is to reduce the capability of these people to threaten our economy by withholding the oil or jacking up the price of it too much. The good news is that there are other sources for oil in a world that seems to be finding it everywhere these days.
In 2001, nearly 50% of the oil we imported came from Canada, Mexico, and Venezuela. Another 18% came from Angola, Britain, Nigeria and Norway. If the Russians can just get their act together, the Russian Federation can increase its position as a major producer and exporter of oil. And, if we can just begin to drill for oil in Alaska and offshore areas of America, we could manage nicely, possibly even replacing the 18% of oil we imported from Saudi Arabia and the 8% from Iraq. That said, I think Iraq is going to be very happy to sell us as much crude oil as we want for a long time to come.
These days, the Democrats are screaming that the Bush administration “lied” and “misled” the nation into the Iraq war. Former Vice President Al Gore, getting loonier by the day, said Bush “betrayed” the nation. Others in the Democratic Party structure have claimed the President was AWOL from his National Guard service. Yawn.
When it comes to weapons of mass destruction, I suspect that no one was more surprised than the Bush "War Cabinet" to discover there were no great stores of WMDs in Iraq. The combined intelligence services of many nations ALL believed Saddam Hussein was sitting on a pile of WMDs and would not hesitate to use them.
Even Saddam thought this was true. Even his generals assumed that the next division or battalion over the hill had them. It was the immaculate deception!
All this brings me to the recommendation that you read James Mann’s new book, Rise of the Vulcans: The History of Bush’s War Cabinet ($25.95, Viking). This is a brilliant look at the personalities who were selected by George W. Bush to be his advisors and his Cabinet. They include Dick Cheney, Colin Powell, Condoleeza Rice, Paul Wolfowitz, and Richard Armitage. They dubbed themselves the “Vulcans.”
Most of us just don’t have a lot of time to look into the history of our government service, the people in the service, and their rise to positions of power, but Mann has done this in a way that provides the “ah-hah” experience. As you read about each one and the relationships between him and others in the service, you constantly find yourself realizing that, sooner or later, Bush was going to find a way to shake up the Middle East and, in the process, realign our nation’s relations with the United Nations, our allies, and our enemies.
We shall never know whether their combined post-Cold War attitudes about building the strongest military in the world would have led inexorably to war with Iraq, but September 11, 2001, made it inevitable. First there was their remarkably swift response to the Taliban and al-Qa'ida in Afghanistan, and then there was the build-up toward the invasion of Iraq. The Bush administration dropped multilateralism and literally ignored France, Germany, and Russia.
Despite seeking cover from a United Nations resolution, Bush was in no mood for more diplomatic chatter when, on March 19, 2003, he gave the green light to Operation Iraqi Freedom. Three weeks later, the U.S. military was in downtown Baghdad. The one thing the “Vulcans” had not anticipated was that Iraq’s governmental infrastructure, based entirely on fear, hardly existed in any real sense. Minus the Baathist Party gangsters and, of course, Saddam and his evil sons, Iraq, it turned out, needed everything from a decent supply of electricity to the provision of clean water. And just about everything else that constitutes a modern nation!
So, life is full of surprises, but let us not be sidetracked from the obvious. Iraq no longer poses a threat to any of its neighbors and you can bet they are very grateful to the United States of America. Libya has decided to give up its nuclear and other WMD programs. Iran and Syria are yielding to the pressures the new dynamic in the Middle East has demonstrated. These are all positive changes resulting from the Iraq war. Then, too, there was no massive uprising or response from the socalled “Arab street.” Remember all those experts who said how angry they would be? About the best response they could manage was to run about saying that Iraq should be turned over to the United Nations. This is the same UN whose headquarters in Baghdad was blown apart by Islamic terrorists and which has a record of failure dealing with any crisis.
What Operation Iraqi Freedom told everyone was that the United States of America is now in charge of events and intends to stay that way for a long time to come. Take note Red China. Be nice Russian Federation. Watch your step European Union. Get out of the way France and Germany. Clean up your act Mexico and South America. Make peace India and Pakistan. Be very careful North Korea.
Now ask yourself one more thing. Do you want to elect a President who thinks terrorism is “a law enforcement” problem? Or who voted against the funding to finish the job we started in Iraq?
The Problem of Rogue States:
Iraq as a Case History
The Middle East & the Arabs
Islamism & Jihadism -- The Threat of Radical Islam
Page Three Page Two Page One
War & Peace in the Real World
Page Two Page One
Islamist Terrorist Attacks on the U.S.A.
Osama bin Laden & the Islamist Declaration of War
Against the U.S.A. & Western Civilization
Islamist International Terrorism &
U.S. Intelligence Agencies
U.S. National Security Strategy
Africa: Black Africa *
Africa: North Africa *
American Government 1
American Government 2 * American Government 3 * American Government 4
American Government 5 * American Politics * Anglosphere * Arabs
Arms Control & WMD * Aztlan Separatists * Big Government
Black Africa * Bureaucracy * Canada * China * Civil Liberties * Communism
Congress, U.S. * Conservative Groups * Conservative vs. Liberal
Constitutional Law * Counterterrorism * Criminal Justice * Disloyalty * Economy
Education * Elections, U.S. * Eminent Domain * Energy & Environment
English-Speaking World * Ethnicity & Race * Europe * Europe: Jews
Family Values * Far East * Fiscal Policy, U.S. * Foreign Aid, U.S. * France
Hispanic Separatism * Hispanic Treason * Human Health * Immigration
Infrastructure, U.S. * Intelligence, U.S. * Iran * Iraq * Islamic North Africa
Islamic Threat * Islamism * Israeli vs. Arabs * Jews & Anti-Semitism
Jihad & Jihadism * Jihad Manifesto I * Jihad Manifesto II * Judges, U.S. Federal
Judicial Appointments * Judiciary, American * Latin America * Latino Separatism
Latino Treason * Lebanon * Leftists/Liberals * Legal Issues
Local Government, U.S. * Marriage & Family * Media Political Bias
Middle East: Arabs * Middle East: Iran * Middle East: Iraq * Middle East: Israel
Middle East: Lebanon * Middle East: Syria * Middle East: Tunisia
Middle East: Turkey * Militant Islam * Military Defense * Military Justice
Military Weaponry * Modern Welfare State * Morality & Decency
National Identity * National Security * Natural Resources * News Media Bias
North Africa * Patriot Act, USA * Patriotism * Political Culture * Political Ideologies
Political Parties * Political Philosophy * Politics, American * Presidency, U.S.
Private Property * Property Rights * Public Assistance * Radical Islam
Religion & America * Rogue States & WMD * Russia * Science & Ethics
Sedition & Treason * Senate, U.S. * Social Welfare Policy * South Africa
State Government, U.S. * Subsaharan Africa * Subversion * Syria * Terrorism 1
Terrorism 2 * Treason & Sedition * Tunisia * Turkey * Ukraine
UnAmerican Activity * UN & Its Agencies * USA Patriot Act * U.S. Foreign Aid
U.S. Infrastructure * U.S. Intelligence * U.S. Senate * War & Peace
Welfare Policy * WMD & Arms Control