Vice President Joe Biden traveled to Iraq Monday to mark the end of what is called ‘formal’ U.S. combat. US troops have been withdrawn from Iraq, and now it’s time for a big thumbs-up, a smile, and a little reassurance that the 50,000 U.S. troops left over will be enough to get an Iraqi democracy smoothly running.
Biden marks what many have been waiting for. The Iraq withdrawal. The pulling out of US troops.
Since America’s invasion of Iraq in 2003, there has been constant entertainment on television for Americans. Remember the spectacular ‘Shock & Awe’ campaign, where missiles dropped from the sky into the heart of Baghdad and created the most real fireworks this nation has ever seen?
And, of course, on the television, the sight was pretty amazing, but imagine living in Baghdad when the bombs were falling. The Iraqis must have really enjoyed the show!
And America called it a new type of warfare. They meant it was a new type of cowardice, where men press buttons miles away and destroy infrastructure and human beings with even more precision than the generation before them.
Some missiles got away from them, that’s true, and some innocent people died, that’s true too, but mostly, as Americans say, the terrorists perished. America really believes that Middle Eastern people are, in general, terrorists, so a few stray missiles, rogue US troops, and other deadly mistakes aren’t much to worry about.
If a missile strikes a wedding party, or a crowded marketplace, more than likely you got a few terrorists, even if the carnage appears to be only women and children and old men celebrating or purchasing food for the week.
The entertainment was top notch. As the invasion progressed, America could watch the massacre from across the world. We were especially engrossed over dinner: the images of chaos in Iraq, the inevitable disaster zone that accompanies any country’s complete upheaval by the invasion and occupation of a foreign army.
And now, in the blink of an eye, it’s over, and all America has left is Afghanistan and the growing turmoil in Pakistan and Iran. But that’s not even very interesting. A few dead civilians here and there. But no ‘Shock & Awe’ campaigns. At least not yet.
So let’s join Joe Biden, and the Obama administration in saluting America, the US troops, George Bush Jr., Iraq, and the Iraqis for a job well done; a successful mission; the end of another fine era.