What happened to Iraq?
Posted by Reid on January 23, 2008
The general media reaction to the good news in Iraq has been the following: ignore it; or run stories about traumatic and deadly stress of veterans, or other bad news themes like the updates on the Marine trials; or talk not about the significance of victory but only of the unnecessary cost. Iraq was supposed to be the make-or-break issue for the Democrats, as they vied with one another to get the troops out the quickest. But the last two months in the theater, the number of American fatalities is starting to devolve to the number of what might be normally lost in deployments of the size of 160,000 through normal training and dangers in a noncombatant environment. (20,000 have died in military accidents since 1980).
In any case the argument is increasingly becoming moot. Americans of all persuasions want US troops to come home, the question now is mostly under what circumstances. Fears of Iran and $100 a barrel oil have made many of the old controversies of the 2003-5 years moot as well. I wrote once that the war would end with a whimper not a bang, and so it is starting to—only to be refought for the next twenty years by historians, once the tell-all, fiasco, quagmire, ‘George Bush is our worst president’ exposes clear out.