In today’s Washington Post, 12 Army Captains deliver a sober assessment of the war:
What does Iraq look like on the ground?
…Many roads, bridges, schools and hospitals are in deplorable condition. Fewer people have access to drinking water or sewage systems than before the war. And Baghdad is averaging less than eight hours of electricity a day.
How do you like yer democracy, Iraq?
Iraq’s institutional infrastructure, too, is sorely wanting.
…At the local level, most communities are still controlled by the same autocratic sheiks that ruled under Saddam. There is no reliable postal system. No effective banking system. No registration system to monitor the population and its needs.
The gist of the article is that we either need to get serious, instate a draft, and really try to win, or immediately withdraw.
I have been saying for some time that if this Global War on Terror is the conflict of our generation, then let’s have us a draft. Quit screwing around and ask the American people to actually, you know, sacrifice something.
Why was World War Two won in four years? Because we pulled together and actually fought a war. The whole nation had War on the Mind 24/7. We rationed. We volunteered. We acted like it mattered.
Call me cynical, but I believe we never would have continued down this road to War Profiteer Hell if we had instated a draft. This war seems to be about power and oil, and nothing else. And as these Captains point out, we have made no headway in the last five years.
There is one way we might be able to succeed in Iraq. To continue an operation of this intensity and duration, we would have to abandon our volunteer military for compulsory service. Short of that, our best option is to leave Iraq immediately. A scaled withdrawal will not prevent a civil war, and it will spend more blood and treasure on a losing proposition.
America, it has been five years. It’s time to make a choice.