Josh Levy has started a blog called http://www.win-the-war.com/. He believes, as I do, that winning in Iraq is not optional but mandatory. While he has most of his focus on Iraq, I have spent much time recently dealing with Iran. In reality, Iran and Iraq are intertwined and as goes one so goes the other.
To understand, let's take things back to the beginning. I believe that one of the main reasons that Iraq was chosen for invasion had to do with geography. This is something that the President doesn't talk about however it really makes sense. Take a look at any map of the region and you will see that Syria stands next to Iraq which stands next to Iran. That is three terrorist enabling states that stood next to each other. Besides all of the other reasons that everyone discussed at the time to take out Saddam, by taking him out, we would create a democracy on the border of each Syria and Iran. In other words, by being in the middle it was the most strategic geographically.
This is important because this same principle applies. In fact, the same reasons that made sense geographically then also have led to making the mission that much more difficult. Iraq is being attacked on each border by enemies that want to do anything and everything to stop its democracy from forming. This only makes sense. The last thing the despots in Damascus and Tehran need is a democracy on their border. They will do everything in their power to stop it. Furthermore, if it forms it will go a long giant way, especially combined with the ideas that I have, to bringing both of those regimes down.
Thus, it is nothing less than troubling that some in Washington talk about a pull out from Iraq. A loss means a victory not only for the forces of Al Qaeda, the Mahdi Army, but most especially for Iran. A victory for the coalition on the other hand has the opposite effect, and the despots in Tehran now know that not only is the U.S. capable of invading their nation but we have the will to stay and finish the job.
To hand Iraq to the hornet's nest of evil means first and foremost to strengthen the position of Iran. Iran, which is pursuing nuclear weapons, threatening to wipe Israel of the map, and taking hostages at will. To me Iran is no different than any bully on any playground. The only way to stop a bully is to stand up to them. We could stand up to the at the UN, in a utopia maybe, or maybe it could have happened last year in Lebanon, or even when they took British hostages. Now, we have one last chance to stand up to them in Iraq. We have one last chance to stand up to this bully, to show them that there are no IED's strong enough, no sneak attacks, no proxies, that will break our will. It is time to stand up to this bully once and for all. They have chosen this battlefield to flex their muscle, and if we don't stop them here they will move to new battlefields with increasing strength.
We have an opportunity ladies and gentlemen. Iran is the third largest producer of oil, and yet they import more then half their own supply. They have to ration the gasoline they provide their citizens. Their citizens have stated unequivacably that they are against the regime, for Democracy, and for peace. No matter how much bluster they show, this regime can fall. There are many things we can do to tip them over, but first and foremost we must stay and finish the job in Iraq.