April 20, 2008

"All done, go home." - IRAQ

Another one from Alternet, an interview with Jonathan Steele, author of Defeat: Why they Lost Iraq:

Also, people expected great things from Americans, things that were perhaps a bit unrealistic -- electricity and water and jobs immediately. But they had the idea, "It's a superpower; they toppled Saddam in three weeks, how come they can't get the electricity going?"

Encapsulating the mood, about three months after the invasion, a graffito appeared on the plinth of the famously toppled Saddam statue. The graffito said, "All done, go home." I think that summed it up. It's the same sentiment I remember hearing on great march of [Shia] pilgrims through Karbala within three or four weeks of the toppling of the statue -- "Thank you, and now goodbye."

click here for the whole thing

I think American discourse often overlooks the fact that a lot of Iraqis, a majority according to most polls I've seen, want the US troops out of their country, now. Most Americans are against the war now, but as far as I can tell there's not much support for a total withdrawal either. The fact that every reason the White House, CIA, and Pentagon gave us to justify the invasion turned out to be total crap should be reason enough to withdraw all troops yesterday. But let's also not forget what most Iraqis actually want.

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