I know I'm an amateur on this stuff but I'll give it a shot....
As the war drags on and on in Iraq, the arrogance of the Bush administration (and much of America) continues to astound me. Of course it is now clear that he and his cronies (and a whole lot of Democrats!) started an unprovoked war for reasons that had nothing to do with national defense and everything to do with worldwide dominance. Ironically, the war that America created is now a serious one and not to be taken lightly. By elininating Saddam and infuriating Muslims with our presence in Iraq there is no question that the country is now loaded with bad guys that need to be exterminated, if possible. Should we stay?
Bush would have you believe that we do indeed need to "finish the job" which has, since 2003 consisted of:
a) Attacking a country unprovoked.
b) Creating a haven for terrorists who dared not enter Iraq during Saddam's reign.
c) Creating an extremely effective recruiting tool (our very presence) for Al Qaeda's operations.
d) And finally, rallying around Bush who, as Commander in Chief, is ultimately responsible for creating this mess!
But like the boy who cried, "Wolf," Bush's credibility is long gone. Only two years ago he bragged, "I have earned political capital and I intend to spend it." Well, ladies and germs, that capital has been spent and now, like most Americans, Bush's capital has been turned into gnawing debt.
But if the war is now so important (it is) why aren't we rallying around our troops' brave efforts? Part of it is simple abandonment of the politicians who created this mess. Why would we trust our leaders to win a war that they themselves created? But more importantly, it has become clear to most that we can not win the war, even if we stay a hundred years. This may or may not be true but most of us agree with Bush's own leaked security reports which revealed that we are creating far more terrorists in Iraq than we are eliminating.
So our actions in Iraq will probably turn out to be an utter waste. ALL of our soldiers will have died in vain (Barack Obama was correct on this count before he lamely apologized). And we will be far worse off in all ways than we were in early 2003, not to mention hundreds of billions of dollars poorer. So what do we do about all the terrorists when we finally pull out of Iraq? They won't simply vanish when the troops come home. It will be a terrible problem. You should certainly ask people far smarter than me but I'll give it an amateurish shot...
What's really bothered me since 9/11 is America's complete lack of humility. And that has caused severe problems. Should we make any excuses for the monsters who killed 3,000 Americans six years ago? Of course not. So, what the hell is my point? Well, since Clinton left office six years ago, our "worldwide approval rating" has gone from about 75% to about 25%. The world is angry at America. Not just the terrorists. The world. "Who cares, bitch?" you might hiss as you crack open a cold one and watch rednecks drive 500 miles in a circle. Well, to begin with, it is logical to assume that the world as a whole is just as "reasonable" as we are and we should respect (if not act on) other countries' opinions. To conclude otherwise is xenophobic nonsense. Therefore it logically follows that our behavior, in general, over the past six years has been offensive to the world. It also follows that, if you anger reasonable people, unreasonable people are much more likely to try to kill you. And being dead is a drag.
Soooo, why would we want to do unreasonable things that also endanger us?! We have attacked Iraq (unreasonable to the vast majority of the world) and simultaneously created far more terrorists who wish to bring America to its knees (and just might be able to do it). In the future, can we behave in ways that are morally sound AND create less of a terrorist threat AND help our own country overall? "Shut up, hippie!!!" you may bellow from your SUV as you glare at an immigrant. But let me give you a simple example.
I have learned that we need only increase our gas mileage by about 5 miles per gallon (per vehicle) to completely eliminate our need for mideast oil. So why has this not been pursued ferociously since 9/11?! Why did we go to war in Iraq rather than dramatically decrease our need for involvement in the area? Why are we using a finite resource (oil) as if there's plenty to go around for our grandkids? There isn't! We have instead bought larger and larger vehicles, completely ignored the needs of future Americans, and created more terrorists. Super! Why not get the hell out of the area where we are despised if we need to sacrifice so little? The answer from most Americans? "WE"RE NUMBER ONE!!" Yawn.
In conclusion (and I know this was not expertly written), the world is tired of hearing such inane slogans as "you're with us our against us" or "we're the greatest country on earth." We need to shut up and realize we can no longer ignore world opinion. We've done this for many years and we are far worse off for it. America as a whole has spent its political capital and it will take decades to get it back. Let's be very careful who we vote for in the future....