Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Tripartite Iraq?

Joe Biden continues his novelty campaign outside the harsh glare of media lights, national attention, or voter recognition. He's gotta be running for Secretary of State, because I've got a better chance of being President. Despite that, he's got the only serious plan for dealing with Iraq. According to Biden, who appeared on Bill Maher's show three weeks ago, we have three choices in Iraq: occupation, a Saddam-style strong man, or:
". . . a federal system where you let people control the fabric of their daily lives. Local police forces, their laws relating to marriage, education, those issues that affect their everyday life. And a federal government that controls and army, the borders and currency and the distribution of natural resources. There’s never been any other, other than those three alternatives."
The major problem with how the Iraq war was conceived and implemented, and the major problem confronting us in the civil war, is that every politician in Washington has treated it as a domestic policy issue.

Bush and Cheney got warm and tingly thinking about how they'd be received in Boston when the Army was greeted with flowers in Baghdad. Later, Bush was unwilling to alter the course because he couldn't stomach the idea of what the New York Times would write. The Democrats have, sadly, been no better (with the sole exception of Russ Feingold): during the run up to the war, they were sufficiently cowed by the administration and didn't want to risk what meager power the GOP meted out to them. Then came the horrific Kerry period of voting against it after they voted for it. Finally, the get-the-hell out phase, which rests on the sole, dubious belief that our mere presence is what causes the violence.

Democrats aren't picking up on Biden's plan for domestic policy reasons, too. It's clear that a tripartite Iraq requires international oversight and ongoing support--something the Dems don't seem to have the will for. When I first started blogging, I constantly railed at the Dems, who employed politics as if they still had power, instead of recognizing they were in a back-alley knife fight with Karl Rove. The opposite appears true now--they're so concerned with getting back into power, they're not thinking about how to govern when they do.

Ultimately, someone's going to have to be a grown-up and take responsibility for Bush's mess. There are no reasonable plans on the table except Biden's. Having done the math, I'm prepared to go with it.

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