One Year. As we look back on Iraq, let's assess the positives and the negatives of our occupation.
1) Saddam Hussein is gone. That is certainly very, very, good.
Unfortunately, that's the ONLY positive I can think of. Can anybody think of any others?
And even that is not unqualified: we don't know yet what will replace it. Dictators are usually replaced by other dictators. If we rule the country, it is likely that we will become dictators ourselves in an effort to keeps Shi'ites, Sunnis and Kurds from each others' throats.
1) 550 Americans Dead. 550 families bereaved. So far.
2) Several thousand injured: losses of arms, legs, eyes. So far.
3) Tens of Thousands of Iraqi civilians dead. God knows how many wounded. So far.
4) No end in sight.
5) The REAL war on terror was pushed to the backburner for a whole year.
6) Al Qaeda has been allowed to regroup because we have been busy elsewhere
7) During the most threatening period in our history, almost our entire armed force is being used as a local police force, occupying a country that WASN'T a threat to us.
8) We have no way to leave without creating an even BIGGER disaster.
9) Our civil rights have been abridged. There is no plan to reinstate them.
10) Hundreds of billions of dollars are getting poured into a gaping endless hole, and we are piling up debt at unprecedented rates. We have no money left to do anything useful.
11) There has been NO increase in our own safety.
And unlike the first list, I could easily make this one much longer.