The Commons is a weblog for concerned citizens of southeast Iowa and their friends around the world. It was created to encourage grassroots networking and to share information and ideas which have either been suppressed or drowned out in the mainstream media.

"But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place;' some swearing, some crying for a surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left. I am afeard there are few die well that die in a battle; for how can they charitably dispose of any thing, when blood is their argument? Now, if these men do not die well, it will be a black matter for the king that led them to it; whom to disobey were against all proportion of subjection." (Henry V, Act V, Scene 4)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

America’s self-inflicted war wounds

Column: America’s self-inflicted war wounds

Gideon Rachman

The symbolism of getting General David Petraeus to testify before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on the anniversary of 9/11 appealed to the White House. It should not have. It is crass. General Petraeus’s struggle to salvage the Iraq war merely underlines the fact that invading Iraq was a crazy way to respond to the terrorist attacks on New York and Washington.

Six years after 9/11, the US needs to re-think. It is now clear that Iraq was the biggest blunder of the Bush years. It is also becoming evident that counter-terrorism should no longer be the centrepiece of American foreign policy. As the official 9/11 commission demonstrated, Saddam Hussein played no role in the terrorist attacks. He also had no nuclear weapons and no significant relationship with al-Qaeda.

But the Iraq invasion was not simply the wrong response to 9/11. It has actually made the terrorism problem worse in five significant ways.

The remainder of this week's column can be read here ( subscribers only). Comments can be made below.


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