There has been a lot of chewy writing about Iraq and the War on Terror in the last few weeks. For your reference, and mine, a round-up.
- Maj. Eric Egland in the Weekly Standard: “American leaders, especially the nominee for secretary of defense, should consider a bottom-up plan to win that taps the collective grass-roots wisdom of successful battlefield innovators. In particular, there are six course corrections that can be taken almost immediately.” (via Blackfive)
- Jeremy Greenstock in The Washington Post: “The internal and regional dimensions of the Iraq tragedy must be brought together in a conference that reaches beyond the narrow objectives of financial burden-sharing. … A new dynamic could be created and a new hope offered, with no participant able to say truthfully that the collapse of Iraq is in its particular interest.”
- Belgravia Dispatch: “[A] dramatic move to regionalize our approach to the Iraq issue is desperately needed. …we should convene a major Iraq Contact Group consisting of the Americans, British, Germans, French, Russians and Chinese—with full participation by each of Iraq’s neighbors (Saudi Arabia, Iran, Syria, Jordan, Turkey, Kuwait), as well as other critical Arab and/or Islamic countries as observers to the Contact Group (Egypt and Morocco, for instance).”
- The Belmont Club: “Any conference aimed at effectively handing a victory to the Iranians would be as pointless as putting out a fire in your hair with a hammer in order to feel better.” See also this comparison of Iraq with the Philippine-American War.
- Mark Steyn in the Chicago Sun-Times: “[T]o choose to lose Iraq would be an act of such parochial self-indulgence that the American moment would not endure, and would not deserve to. … We think we can just call off the game early, and go back home and watch TV.”
- Josh Manchester in TCS Daily: “The world will know that when Iraq becomes the next Taliban-like state, or the next Rwanda, that it was only because the United States, the most able, powerful, and wealthy nation in the history of the world, gave up.” Lots of good writing at Mr. Manchester’s The Adventures of Chester, including this podcast article with Fred Ikle.
- David Blue at Winds of Change: “[W]e have to oppose and diminish a system that is intractably and (in the context of proliferating nuclear weapons) fatally hostile to us, even though that will enrage and alienate the large absolute numbers of genuinely good and moderate people within that system…” See also Joe Katzman’s Fibonacci’s Nukes II.
- Armed Liberal at Winds of Change: “I continue to believe that we have no choice but to succeed. A bogus ‘declare victory and leave’ solution, as appealing as it may be to many of us in terms of domestic politics, will only result in a bloodbath within Iraq, will embolden the exact movement we went into Iraq and Afghanistan to push back, will strengthen the hand of the anti-American forces within Iran, and will almost certainly lead to a wider and bloodier set of wars within the Middle East…”
- Lt. Peter Hegseth in the Princeton Alumni Weekly (via Tigerhawk): “[W]e simply do not have enough troops in Iraq, and we need them now.”
- Michael Leeden in the New York Sun: The Iraq war is unlike the French War in Algeria in that “[i]t is much bigger than a single country, and ideology is much more important in vital areas of the battlefield. The insurgents in Iraq do not just depend on the Iraqi people for support, because they have enormous support in Syria and Iran.” And in National Review Online: “[C]an the people of the region believe we are going to win? They won’t believe it until they see us waging war effectively, which means we have to be able to threaten Iran and Syria with defeat.” (via Power Line)
- George Packer in The New Yorker: “The argument that Iraq would be better off on its own is a self-serving illusion that seems to offer Americans a win-win solution to a lose-lose problem. Like so much about this war, it has more to do with politics here than reality there.”
- Michael Young in The Daily Star: “With George W. Bush so roundly beaten, don’t expect much American interest, in the foreseeable future and probably beyond that, for liberalism in the Middle East.”
What did I miss? Let us know in the comments.