Thursday, March 20, 2008

Calling Their Shots

The ever-elusive Osama bin Laden has just released a new tape to al Jazeera in which he calls Iraq the "perfect base to set up the jihad to liberate Palestine."

I'm putting the over/under on days it takes John McCain or the administration to completely misinterpret history and use this as a reason our occupation of Iraq is necessary at two.

While anyone with a basic understanding of history and the region will instantly understand that said base was created by the United States and that as long as foreign forces occupy their soil there will be no peace.

As long as Saddam was in power, bin Laden utilizing Iraq as a jumping-off point would have been impossible. It is only into the vacuum created by the US forces that al Qaeda or other groups can slip into. One need only recall how bin Laden obtained the position he's in in the first place. The United States helped drive the Russians out of Afghanistan in the '80s and the Taliban filled the vacuum, creating a safe harbor for terrorism and bin Laden.

Yet, the President and his cronies don't see things in that light. They refuse to acknowledge the correlation between the US occupation and the insurgency. To them, that one is the root cause of the other is sacrilege. Instead, they continue to insist that we must stay until the insurgency comes to a halt, illustrating a willfully-blind belief that cessation is possible without vacation.

In that light, I give the administration or John McCain-whichever strikes first-two days at most to say something to the effect of, "just the other day, bin Laden himself said that Iraq would make a good base for terrorism against our friends and allies. We must not let that happen." And no one will stand up and point out that that sanctuary was created by the same people who decry its existence.

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