Let Iraq disintegrate, America must not re-intervene

The media’s frenzy over the Sunni mujahideen advance toward Baghdad is a stark reminder to all Americans of the dire costs exacted from them by the U.S. government’s unnecessary interventions in the affairs of other countries and peoples. Today’s stories from Iraq underline the total waste flowing from the 2003 U.S. intervention in Iraq, the costs of which exceed $1 trillion, 5,000 dead U.S. service personnel, many more thousands of soldiers and Marines wounded and maimed, and an unending and apparently un-endable war with the Muslim world.

It was easy, from the start, to see where U.S. intervention in Iraq would lead. Even a dumbass like myself correctly predicted the mess we are now seeing there in the substance of several books published between 2002 and 2011. Such predictions were not rocket science, a little knowledge of human nature and history were all a person needed to know that today’s events were all but inevitable. And if you did not have time for studying human nature or history, you merely had to recall what the Founding Father’s said about the unavoidable lethal consequences for the American nation that would flow from unnecessary U.S. intervention abroad.

In a nutshell, here is what the bipartisan U.S. interventionists and Neoconservatives — remember Hillary Clinton, Joe Lieberman, and most pro-Israel Democrats wanted war — managed in the space of little more than a decade.

  1. They took a stable and effectively if brutally governed Iraq and destroyed it, and had nothing in hand or mind to maintain that status quo ante.
  2. They destroyed, ironically, Israel’s last, best hope of survival by eliminating Saddam’s regime, which blocked the westward movement of Sunni jihadis. Now Iraq and Syria are verge on being controlled by Islamists, and, once that is a reality, Jordan will be knocked off. The bipartisan U.S. supporters of the Iraq war — many of whom are dogmatically pro-Israel — brought the jihad to Israel’s borders.
  3. They supported the ethnic cleansing of Baghdad’s Sunnis and gave the city and country to an oppressive Iran-supported Shia regime, thereby knowingly planting the seeds of Iraq’s current sectarian/civil war and disintegration.

Quite a decade’s worth of negative achievements for the fundamentally anti-U.S. American interventionists, is it not? They invaded and occupied a country where American had no genuine national interests at risk as long as Saddam held sway. Though never intending to win in Iraq, they merrily plowed the lives and limbs of our soldiers and Marines into mostly sterile soil of a place irrelevant to the United States, but invaluable to the U.S. oil and arms industries and the domestic and foreign lobbies that poison and manipulate our political system.

What to do now? First, stay out of Iraq completely and utterly. To re-intervene would cost more American money and lives, and it would drive-up oil prices even faster. It also would amount not only to the United States again intervening in an oil-rich Muslim country, but intervening in a Sunni-Shia religious war on the side of the Shia, who are fiercely hated by the overwhelmingly Sunni Islamic world. Since the Obama administration — like its predecessor — would not intend to win or finally settle anything if it re-intervenes, the Sunni mujahideen will prevail; their victory will be seen by most Muslims as the Islamists’ defeating the United States In Iraq for a second time; and that victory will reinforce bin Laden’s promise that no nation-state can defeat the mujahideen if God finds their efforts worthy, which He seems to have done in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Second, the national government must act to defend the United States here at home in North America by getting the hell out of the way. Because Obama and his fellow environmental ideologues have done nothing since 2008 to move the United States toward energy self-sufficiency — all successful efforts on energy have been private sector-led — Americans are going to have to tighten their belts and ride out the higher gas prices that are coming because of events in Iraq. But, now, the XL Pipeline must be immediately started, and permits for drilling on Federal on- and off-shore lands must be issued as quickly as possible. Energy self-reliance is still years off but now is the time force Obama and his lieutenants act for the first time as American patriots, rather than elite professors who regard Americans as laboratory animals upon whom they can conduct their social, economic, environmental, and interventionist experiments to see how much tax they can pay and how much pain they can stand.

Third, Americans must look sharp and finally see that the Republican and Democratic interventionists — they are majorities in both parties — are killing the United States economically and politically; are earning us nearly innumerable enemies; and are involving us willy-nilly in unnecessary wars to protect, with American blood and money, the interests of countries from Eastern Europe to the Middle East to Sub-Saharan Africa, countries where a change in government or even their demise would have no quantifiable impact on the genuine national security concerns of the United States.

The truth is that since the end of the Soviet Union, unrelenting bipartisan U.S. interventionism under the two Bushes, Clinton, and Obama has earned America only defeat, hatred, death, limb-less soldiers and Marines, bankruptcy, and diminished national security. History will show that Dr. Ron Paul was right about the nation-killing costs of foreign intervention score at every step of the way. Perhaps the current disaster in Iraq will show whether his Senator-son is a chip of the old block and eager to defend America, or an acquiescent interventionist willing to tack in any direction necessary to have a shot at the presidency.

Author: Michael F. Scheuer

Michael F. Scheuer worked at the CIA as an intelligence officer for 22 years. He was the first chief of its Osama bin Laden unit, and helped create its rendition program, which he ran for 40 months. He is an American blogger, historian, foreign policy critic, and political analyst.