Thursday, January 11, 2007

Senator Obama: We're not going to baby sit a civil war

It's not exactly how I would haved described what the United States is doing there today.

To use the words baby sit; although I understand Obama's point and perhaps it sends a needed message to the Iraqi Government that the American people have limits.

I remember meeting Veterans of the Spanish Civil War here in Chicago in the 1960s. Sometimes over at the Guild Bookstore at Halstead near Armitage.

They volunteered to fight in a Civil War most Americans preferred the United States sit out. The sides were just as morally murky in the Spanish Civil War --Republicans allied with Stalinists just as we have an Iraqi Government using Shia militias-- but they fought with the Republicans and I admired them for it.

Here are the words of an Iraqi Communist Party member today. He serves as Iraq's minister of Science and Technology. Raïd Fahmi in an interview with the French Communist Party paper L'Humanite as translated in the American Communist Party's Political Affairs, said,

What we need, is for those who support the independence of Iraq, and this country’s development, wherever they may be in the world, to express their solidarity for those who are fighting for these objectives. Unfortunately, stances have been taken by some of these forces which play in favor of political currents which are opposed to democracy. On the one hand, they talk about democracy and secularism, but in fact, they take positions which weaken, rather than reinforce the democratic and progressive trends in the country. It’s possible to establish a frank and sincere dialogue with the range of progressive forces, in Iraq and throughout the world, in a mutually respectful manner. This should be done with a view to achieving our shared goal for a peaceful, independent, unified and federal Iraq. We totally assume our choices and our politics because our primary responsibility is to the Iraqi population.
So besides telling this Comrade the American People have limits, it would be nice to have heard Senator Obama send him a message of our solidarity too, and not choose words that ...weaken, rather than reinforce the democratic and progressive trends... because ultimately we can't sit out from the Civil War. We learned that in Spain.

xp Bill Baar's West Side


Anonymous,  7:49 PM  

A Green Party has already been established in Iraq.

crash-dev 8:16 PM  

I thought we learned that we had to sit out civil wars in Vietnam.

Facist Spain prevented Hitler from attacking the British in Gibralter and sheltered many Jews from Eastern Europe granting them citizen ship. While they did provide supplies and material to Germany and Italy during the war, these hardly seemed consequential.

Anonymous,  10:35 PM  

Bill, do you believe that sending another 20,000 soldiers will stop the civil war and bring democracy to Iraq? I don't think so. Either we institute a draft and triple our troop levels, or admit defeat and get out. And how about some help from our chief ally, Great Britan. What do you think the French and British would have said if we had sent only 8,000 troops overseas to fight in WWI?

Bill Baar 5:58 AM  

I was with Rumsfeld on the small foot print. A smaller number of trooops. I think one of our failures was not using the DoD plan from the beginning and setting up a prov gov in Iraq immediately with Chalabi instead of going the occupation route with Bremer.

We never got the united Muslim backlash opponents told us we would. Instead we have a Civil War and I think we best pick sides and let them make short work of it.

I know which side to pick. The one that tolerates a Green Party in Iraq. The side that wants Chicago's Alsammarae who Bremer appointed back for another corruption trial.

A good friends son is in Falluja right now. I get the casualties each day in email and scan for his name. I resented Obama calling what he's doing over there as Baby Sitting.

That rubbed me the wrong way.

JB Powers 10:08 AM  

Did we learn in Spain to sit out the murder of 7,000 Priests and Religious? Or did we learn to sit out the murder of 80,000 union members?

In either case, I am not sure the US could have made any decision other than to sit out the Spanish Civil War.


Bill Baar 11:50 AM  

Sat out we did, and defaulted to Stalin to lead the Republican cause.

We washed our hands of both sides and got the results you cite JB. Maybe things would have gone different had the US and UK confronted Fascism there instead of leaving it to Stalin to fill the void.

In Iraq, were involved. Some would have us walk away again, saying nuts to you all. We're not baby sitters as Obama put it.

I don't think that's going to work.

JB Powers 4:35 PM  

To sidetrack....the local anarchists and "liberals" did much of the butchery on the left, before Stalin got his controls over the Republicans. I know that the popular romantic idea of the Spanish Republic does fit this, but chronologically, there is no way Stalin had much to do with the initial fraticide of the Spanish Civil War.

There are some people out there that are just bad apples, with or without the assistance of Stalin.


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