- One notable aspect of the political tempests now swirling around Iraq is that neither in Iraq nor in the U.S. has there been any significant movement calling for the U.S. to delay or reverse its continuing pullout.
I truly think this is significant. The adamant refusal of just about all (non-Kurdish) Iraqis to ask the US to rescind or reverse its withdrawal plans surprises me not one jot. But I do think the fact that no-one in the US is calling for the US to “do something” to prevent further carnage inside Iraq is particularly notable.
I say this as someone who has always said that the American military is the organization that’s just about the most ill-suited in the world to be able to “help” Iraqis if political turmoil overtakes their country…. This is a part of my deep opposition to “liberal hawkism” in all its manifestations.
So fundamentally I’m really glad there are no significant American voices calling for the US to use its military to try to “help” Iraqis right now.
(Of course, it also helps that it was the Bushies who signed off on the Withdrawal Agreement. So the republicans are not now able to raise the whole question of the advisability of a US withdrawal from Iraq as an ati-Obama partisan issue.)
But I am still, also, more than a bit mystified. Where have all the people gone who, before the Bush administration’s conclusion last November of the Withdrawal Agreement with Iraq, were ominously warning that the US “could not” withdraw with anything like a fixed timetable from Iraq because afterwards Iraq might “spiral into bloody chaos”, or whatever?
Where are those people now?
What I’m sensing is that– perhaps especially after the economic collapse of last fall– most Americans have turned their back on their previous fondness for exotic foreign military adventures. Both Iraq and Afghanistan turned out to be not nearly as much “fun” as they used to be for those people.
This is mainly good– especially if it means there will be far fewer loud calls within the US political elite for foreign military interventions, for allegedly ‘humanitarian’ or any other purposes, over the years ahead, than there have been throughout all the years since the end of the Cold War.
But it’s also a bit worrying, if it means that Americans have become much more inward-looking and xenophobic.