Tuesday, August 05, 2003

Stream Of Commute - National Security And The War In Iraq

remember, this ongoing section of the blog is a stream-of-consciousness (as thought, then written) record of stuff I'm thinking about while on the daily commute. enjoy! and remember, it's largely unedited. in this particular case, totally so.

seaports and the rest

we should have

1) stayed focused on AQ and BL, kept the Deltas on them
2) spent our money wisely - not invading Iraq and spending $100 billion but assuring that 9/11 did not result in any adverse effects on our economy, their target in a lot of ways, and spending money to shore up our seaports and to assist our cities and airports in their efforts to gear up on security

if there is increasing danger of another terrorist attack, imminently, how has the war in Iraq helped us with that?

or has the war actually just diverted attention and money away from where it should have been - hunting down those terrorists who are an immediate and direct threat to us, and investing in security here at home, in all the likely and poorly secured places, to make us safer against those immediate and direct threats.

we just heard another threat. we are still very insecure. saddam was not an immediate, or direct, threat to the U.S., or to our allies. we exaggerated that, and in the process lost sight of what we all know is a definite and immediate threat. to do that, at a time when we were closing in on them and had unprecedented global support, is incompetence and bungling of the highest magnitude, and nearly criminal. especially should we get hit again, in the near future, through a means which we could have anticipated and secured against, through a hole which we could have plugged, or at least greatly filled in order to add risk to any operation to strike us through it.


so you have to ask yourself, "what could we have done with the money we spent invading Iraq unnecessarily?"

how much to get the seaports secured? the cities? the airlines and airports?

how much to keep the pressure on in afghanistan, to bribe pakistan with enough money to help us, or allow us into their country?

also, all of this money that was being spent would be going to domestic spending, investment and infrastructure, rather than going into the hands of private corporations who will need to rearm us, and rebuild Iraq, and who help with the overall war effort.

sort of like a Marshall Plan, a security plan, for us. The Bush Plan. And bush would have been remembered into posterity for such far-sighted and crucial effort, while also likely defeating our enemies in Afghanistan.

the world would still be with us, and Saddam would be so contained it would be ridiculous.

invading Iraq was a gambit. a risk of investing resources here rather than there. and the peculiar thing, in this instance, is that we moved the resources, and attention, to something that clearly seemed like less of a threat, an immediate threat, than AQ, and securing our borders, seaports, airports, food and water supplies, and cities.

there has to be accountability. there has to be a process, at some point, and hopefully not after another incident here in the homeland, or a failure abroad in Iraq, where we review the decisions that were made, with the available resources, and the results, along with the status, and risks, that remains from those things that were not addressed, those paths that were known but not taken with the available resources, including time.

the economy must be a part of this. our enemies hit us where it hurt, and have expressed hopes of dragging us down by our economy. thus, we should have always had an eye on this. instead of cutting taxes, perhaps.

ultimately, we must look at and review the whole strategy, step back and take in the big picture of the past few years, and ask ourselves if we could have done better, if we could have expected better, if we have done everything we could, if we have missed things we should have done, if we have really taken a wise and enlightened course. a prudent course. that ensures our security while at the same time protecting the very things that make us America, and the home of the brave, land of the free.