Friday, September 17, 2004

Eclipsed: Bush, Kerry, Vietnam & Iraq: "The United States is 'losing' in Iraq, literally losing territory and population to the other side. Careful readers of the leading newspapers may know this, but I doubt most voters do. How could they, given the martial self-congratulations of the President and relative restraint from his opponent? ... Falluja, Samarra, Ramadi, Karbala, the Sadr City slums of Baghdad-these and other population centers are now controlled by various insurgencies and essentially ceded by US forces.... Meanwhile, Bush's war is destroying the US Army, just as LBJ's war did. After Vietnam, military leaders and Richard Nixon wisely abolished the draft and opted for an all-volunteer force.... After Iraq, men and women will get out of uniform in large numbers, especially as they grasp the futility of their sacrifices."

"Iraq is Vietnam standing in the mirror.... Kerry could describe in plain English what's unfolding now in Iraq and what must be done to find a way out with honor. In other words, be a truth-teller while holding Bush accountable. Kerry won't go there ... Bush can't go near the truth for obvious reasons. If elected, he faces only bad choices-bomb the bejeezus out of Iraq, as Nixon bombed Vietnam and Cambodia, or bug out under the cover of artful lies. The one thing Bush's famous "resolve" cannot achieve is success at war. Never mind, he aims to win the election instead. So this presidential contest resembles a grotesque, media-focused war in which two sides skirmish for the attention of ill-informed voters. Bush won big back when he got Iraq off the front pages and evening news with his phony hand-off of sovereignty and his chest-thumping convention."

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