Saturday, August 1, 2009
Time for Uncle Sam to Let Go of Iraq's Bike Seat?
Check out this curiously-worded memo by Col. Timothy R. Reese, the chief of the Baghdad Operations Command Advisory Team, MND-B, which has the offhandedly urgent title, "It’s Time for the US to Declare Victory and Go Home."
Among the strange, domestic-themed idioms:
"Since the signing of the 2009 Security Agreement, we are guests in Iraq, and after six years in Iraq, we now smell bad to the Iraqi nose."
"Iraq is not a country with a history of treating even its welcomed guests well."
"The [Iraqi government and Iraqi Security Forces] will tolerate us as long as they can suckle at Uncle Sam’s bounteous mammary glands."
"The [2008 Security Agreement] outlines a series of gradual steps towards military withdrawal, analogous to a father teaching his kid to ride a bike without training wheels. ... We now have an Iraqi government that has gained its balance and thinks it knows how to ride the bike in the race. And in fact they probably do know how to ride, at least well enough for the road they are on against their current competitors. Our hand on the back of the seat is holding them back and causing resentment. We need to let go before we both tumble to the ground."
To paraphrase Uncle Reese: We should put the cookie jar away because the Iraqi government wants to bake brownies. Iraq pour itself a glass of milk. And even though, in spite of Maliki's efforts to swab it all up with his old college tee-shirt, the government commits milk spills that cost the country enormous amounts of milk money; even though the den is a total mess, the garden is overgrown, and the kids are still fighting over the T.V. remote that is Kirkuk; even though the Sunnis aren't doing their homework, and Sunni hall monitors aren't getting the respect they deserve from those lazy asshole prefects and hall monitors who aren't inviting us to their parties; and even though bullies still roam the halls brandishing AK-47s and setting off bombs, the fact is that our cookies are overcooked, and we're crowding the kitchen terribly.
"Therefore, we should declare our intentions to withdraw all US military forces from Iraq by August 2010," Reese writes. Or, to put it another way: It’s time for the US to declare victory and go home!
I'm sure America's anti-war activists are wringing their hands over this one.