Wednesday, June 6, 2007

Iraq Is the New Korea

By Robert Scheer

"The 50-year Iraq war—bring it on. Not that the media or the Democrats made much of it, but the White House’s admission that President Bush is modeling America’s presence in Iraq upon the 54-year-old stationing of U.S. troops in South Korea is as outlandish as it is alarming. Outlandish, when the president of what is still presumably a representative democracy willfully ignores voters’ demands that the occupation be brought to a timely end; alarming, because Bush has clearly not understood that it is the U.S. occupation that feeds the nationalist and religious frenzy roiling Iraq, and the entire Middle East.

The president, obviously clueless as to the widespread resentment in the region over a history of Western plunder of Mideast oil, seems determined to give the insurgents of every stripe their best recruiting poster. The analogy with South Korea, an artificially divided country that does not possess oil or any other exploitable resource, is wrong—except for one ominous parallel. The main U.S. military mission in South Korea is to protect the border against a well-armed northern enemy; likewise, Bush administration officials cited protecting Iraq’s borders, particularly with Iran, as the major task of a future American deployment.....

Hear, hear. The alternative is the spectacle of helicopters eventually lifting a new generation of desperate refugees from the rooftops of Baghdad after many more American and Iraqi deaths."

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