THE BLOG
03/21/2006 01:27 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Bush Surrenders; Troops Stay Put

Today, we saw our commander-in-cheap sell our fighting forces to the political machine. "Future presidents," he says, "and (wink-wink) governments of Iraq" will clean up his screw-up. He's going to nap for the remainder of his term, secure in the belief that America's discount democracy will choose someone competent next time around.

Bush has morphed from chicken-hawk to chicken-chicken, abrogating his responsibility to protect and defend the place because it's just too taxing to do the work it'd take get our soldiers home. Only this time, unlike his fratboy scooch out of Indochina, there's not just one soldier going in his place (my money's on Marine PFC D. C. Carter, born a month after Bush in New Haven, Connecticut, killed November 12, 1969, Panel 16W, Line 62 on the memorial). There's over a hundred thousand at a time, rotating in and out -- or, frequently, right back in -- originally on a fool's errand; now just on indefinite hold until somebody comes along with presidential authority and a desire to get them home with all the parts they started with.

This Bonzo has tried to fight two wars on the cheap. He sent an embarrassingly light force into Afghanistan to get the cave-mad "mastermind" who god-conned nineteen fanatics into offing themselves and as many American non-warriors as they could. The supposed strategy: buy off the already-fighting locals, horse feed being cheaper than coordinated bombing raids, and have them fight the war. The glaring hole in the head: the other guys buy off the same locals, and we end up with an escaped Public Enemy Number One, a prison camp full of farmers, and, all right, a nice oil pipeline.

On to Iraq, where the coalition of the cheap took out a local thug in three weeks. Cool! Pop the airhead, and feel the thrilling whoosh of the power vacuum. That'll be 1.7 billion dollars, please. Drive ahead.

Oh, we have to be the cops now? We have to be the strongman holding together the imaginary state? Well, as long as we can do it with underwhelming force and it only takes a decade. Won't the oil pay for it by then anyway? Well, according to the just-FOIA'ed prewar "plans" from the felonious Iraqi exiles and Cheney's flying monkeys in the "Future of Iraq" scam, there's not even enough oil capacity per year in that place to pay for two months of the cheap-ass invasion. (Fave quote: "...effective use of Iraq's resources (oil) [is key] to Iraq's future stability..." p. 40 of the "Defense" PDF) They estimated the country could spurt about ten billion bucks' worth, per annum, into our gaping SUVs, vs. the 6 billion a month it costs us to keep our guys and gals in the Halliburton chow line. Three more years, minimum, says we'll send another 200 billion chasing the 251 billion we'll have thrown down by the end of this month. For securing potential oil revenues in the 100 billion dollars a decade range, I think this deal blows.

How 'bout we invade Kansas, take their soybeans and flax, make biodiesel, and... whoops, started imagining plans where our soldiers don't get their limbs scattered. What country was I thinking?

Anyway, after this latest wimp Bush Wal-Marts the global struggle/war against violent sloganeering, he trembles when the bill arrives. I call bullshit. You don't get to just throw up your hands and cower behind Lady Liberty's skirts when there are real people patrolling your IED- and mine-infested war game.

Isn't there a natural point where the surrender monkey has to give up the reins of the war horse? Where he doesn't get to control the lid on the rapidly boiling combat zones, trapping our men and women in his mistakes like so many lobsters back at the ranch in Connecticut?

There may be, as the war-cheerleaders say, no good options in Iraq. The official leader of the force lying down on the job, though, is a no-good option for sure.