Happy O.I.L. Day


Bush_statue_baghdadToday is the 3rd anniversary of the invasion of Iraq.

It is a solemn occasion. It is time to reflect upon the 2,350 Americans, and 208 ‘coalition’ troops, killed in this war of Bush’s creation. It is a time to rededicate ourselves to the purpose of ensuring that that our government does the right thing by their bereaved families, and by the 17,469 soldiers seriously wounded in this war.

We must also take responsibility, as the free citizens of a democratic republic, for the tens of thousands of innocent Iraqis killed in this war (estimates range from 33K to over 100K). We are justified in assigning primary responsibility for these crimes to Bush and his cabinet of criminal cronies, but we cannot escape the fact that this is a democracy, and we are not yet oppressed by dictatorship, and still we allowed our government to commit such atrocities. Our hands may be clean, but our consciences must not be.

We owe the people of Iraq more than we can ever repay for what we allowed our government to do. Perhaps ending the tyranny of Saddam Hussein’s regime is a small down-payment, but I fear the eventual successor government will be just as brutal, and yet, in years to come, too many will wish to price deposing Saddam as the whole amount due. I fear that the hardship and carnage is only beginning for the people of Iraq as a bitter sectarian civil war begins to spiral out of control. Irrespective of our motives, we have touched off a long-term humanitarian crisis in Iraq, and we must not fail to do everything in our power to alleviate it.

I remain convinced that one thing cannot alleviate further Iraqi suffering; the further deaths and injuries of American servicemen and women stationed in Iraq. There is simply no benefit from further loss of American lives, nor from the exacerbation of civil tensions attendant to our continued military occupation of Iraq. As the opposition party, Democrats must continue to advocate for withdrawal and to propose innovative and thoughtful ways to approach re-establishing peace in Iraq. Democrats do not gain political advantage by being the party of "yeah, what he said…" Our ‘leaders’ have far too often found militaristic solutions to political problems convenient and expedient. If Iraq teaches us anything, it is that disastrously poor policy is grounded in the kind of bipartisanship born of fear and political cowardice, instead of a shared dedication to the national interest.

Now, as the Bush Administration begins once again to beat the drums of war (this time for pre-emption in Iran), we must continually remind ourselves, and our fellow citizens, of the disastrous effects of this Administration’s last attempt to keep ‘WMD out of the hands of madmen’. Have we learned so little? After Vietnam people said, "Never again!" and it took roughly 30 years for us to forget those bitter lessons sufficiently for a con-man to lead us back into an unwinnable and mismanaged war. With the lessons of Iraq barely 3 years old, and more proof arriving every day, we must not allow ourselves to be duped again by exaggerated claims of doomsday threats.

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Michael founded BlogForArizona as the Howard Dean campaign blog for Arizona in 2003, and has been blogging ever since. Michael is an attorney living in Tucson with his wife Lauren Murata. In 2008, following some health issues and new time constraints, Michael stepped back from regular blogging and began remaking BlogForArizona into a collaborative project. Michael now contributes occasionally to the blog and provides editorial and publishing direction. Also if you want to keep up with the latest Arizona and National political news that Mike finds important, check out the Donkey Feed, which he curates. If you are curious about what books Mike is reading (or planning to read) you can check out his public library feed or his Amazon book wish list.


  1. The Democratic party must be ready to counter a real problem,and I hear it everywhere I go, we want to throw out both Parties and vote Independent. District 8 has over 100,000 Independent voters whom admit it!

    C-Span today also had call after call saying the same thing. These calls are from Democrats!

    If Ross Perot was running in 2008 it would look like the 1992 election but the “Sucking Sound,” is Democratic Voters leaving The Democratic Party!

    As I said before, I was a Pima County Deputy Registrar in the 1960’s and Pima County had less than 100 Independent Voters!

    There weremore registered Communists than Independents.

  2. When a rubber band is stretched beyond its limits, it must depend on its own cohesion to avoid being torn apart. If it can do this, it will propel in the opposite direction with equal force – but much faster.

    As far as cohesion, the probability of a disparate group of peoople to act as one body is greatly increased when rallying against a single person or idea. We currently have such a focal point.

    In this way, with the current political climate in both parties, I see the the eventual unforseen fulfillment of a certain campaign promise to be “a uniter – not a divider.”