Wednesday, October 17, 2007

The Classic Bad News/Good News Story from Iraq

Those that know me know that I like very few things more than I like to argue. Since I majored in Finance in college and currently work in the mortgage industry, I invariably find my way toward arguements about the economy with many of liberal friends and colleagues. At this point, it is, in my mind, beyond discussion that the tax cuts served as a stimulant for the economic recovery and boon that followed. I find the tortured logic of any counter arguement to be amusing. For instance, many of my liberal friends point out the fact that the manufacturing sector has struggled since the recovery. This is of course a bogus arguement since it isn't the President's job to prop up one sector. He is there to provide stimulus to the economy as a whole and what happens from there is beyond anyone's control. Economies like everything else evolve. For instance, we don't have any blacksmith's any longer. Were there similar types screaming at the top of their lungs at the end of the eighteen hundreds that the President wasn't doing enough to protect their industry. There may have been and they would have been no less wrong.

Well, it turns out that the Iraqi economy is going through its own revolution, and as a result, one of their industries is unfortunately struggling. Of course, everyone in the industry is struggling along with it. That is the bad news. The good news is what industry it is that is struggling


At what's believed to be the world's largest cemetery, where Shiite Muslims aspire to be buried and millions already have been, business isn't good.

A drop in violence around Iraq has cut burials in the huge Wadi al Salam cemetery here by at least one-third in the past six months, and that's cut the pay of thousands of workers who make their living digging graves, washing corpses or selling burial shrouds.Few people have a better sense of the death rate in Iraq.

"I always think of the increasing and decreasing of the dead," said Sameer Shaaban, 23, one of more than 100 workers who specialize in ceremonially washing the corpses. "People want more and more money, and I am one of them, but most of the workers in this field don't talk frankly, because they wish for more coffins, to earn more and more."


No doubt there are a few anti war types that will blame the surge strategy for destroying the ditch digging industry. I am of course reminded of the classic Caddy Shack line now,
well the world needs ditch diggers too

True, however, in Iraq, it needs significantly less of them. It is this sort of scientific evidence that should convince everyone that things have turned. I know that most of our MSM is ignoring it and many politicians continue to parrot the same tired line about finding a new strategy however we have found a new strategy and its working, and if you want evidence of how well its working, just look at the struggling ditch digging industry in Iraq.

Incidentally, you can count Barack Obama among those politicians that hasn't seen the light yet. I emailed him for comment about the Betray Us ad controversy and here is his response.


Thank you for contacting me to voice your opposition to the MoveOn.org advertisement referring to Gen. David Petraeus as "General Betray Us." I appreciate hearing from you and share your distaste for such attacks on our military leaders.

General Petraeus is a distinguished, highly capable military leader doing the best that he can in an extraordinarily difficult situation. And though there are different views of the war in Congress, there is no disagreement about the tremendous sacrifice being made by the men and women who are serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. They have performed valiantly under exceedingly challenging circumstances. They have done everything that has been asked of them.

For this reason alone, our troops deserve better than partisan squabbling over a newspaper ad. I am focused on addressing the serious challenge we face in Iraq. Today, nearly four thousand brave young Americans are dead, and tens of thousands more have been wounded as our troops have become targets of the exploding sectarian violence in Iraq. Our military has been strained to the limits, and the cost to American taxpayers has already reached hundreds of billions of dollars.

As I have said repeatedly, the Administration's decision to invade Iraq and its disastrous handling of the war have left us without good options for dealing with Iraq. With full recognition of this reality, we must be as careful getting out of Iraq as we were reckless in the decision to invade Iraq. In the coming months, I will continue to push for a new course in Iraq that immediately begins a safe and orderly withdrawal of our combat troops, that changes our military mission to focus on training and counter-terrorism, that puts real pressure on the Iraqis to resolve their grievances, and that focuses our military efforts on the real threats facing our country. I hope you will stay in touch in the days ahead.Thank you again for writing. Sincerely,

Barack Obama

United States Senator


Well, Senator, as I have shown in these pages, we don't need a new strategy. The current counter insurgency strategy has lead to the classic war strategy of divide and conquer. Violence is down, and we only need to look at the ditch digging industry for evidence.

1 comment:

LOL said...

you're a sad petulant little man