Tuesday, August 09, 2005

Guardian Unlimited Politics | Comment | Goodbye Mr Cook and thanks for opposing the war

This will have to do as an epitaph for Mr Cook. It is an excellent article denouncing the madness of Blair's policy on America and Iraq. On the theme of western values Mr Cook tried briefly to offer us an ethical foreign policy.
It is no longer convenient to have an ethical foreign policy. Western values are back with greed and crude self interest as usual.

"Their present approach (to Iraq) is fatally flawed by two delusions.

The first is the belief that they will win if only they can kill, capture or bury under rubble every insurgent. After relentlessly pursuing this approach for two years, the US military is worse off than when it started. In June there were more casualties among coalition troops and Iraqi forces than a year ago in the same month - before the handover of sovereignty that we were promised would transform security. We will continue to lose this conflict until US forces grasp that they breed more insurgents by the indiscriminate use of firepower and by putting higher priority on killing rebels rather than protecting civilians.

The second delusion is the insistence that military occupation of Iraq is the solution to the violence and not a large part of its cause. No strategy to end the insurgency is going to succeed unless it includes an exit plan for foreign troops.

Both George Bush and Tony Blair appealed this week for strong nerves from everyone else. But they also have a responsibility. Peace in Iraq will only be possible if they show the humility to admit the mistakes of the past and to accept that the recent strategy is not working."