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Global Education

Back to the drawing board

By Denebola
Published: October 2007
By David GabrielOn April 30, 1975, the United States armed forces pulled out of Vietnam. It was neither glorious nor was it honorable, as we had hoped. We pulled out because of the alarming number of our “boys” that were returning home either dead or mutilated.
Our withdrawal, however, resulted in the merciless death of thousands of South Vietnamese men and women who fought side by side with American troops.
President George W. Bush warned us this past August that a withdrawal of U.S. troops from Iraq would lead to mass bloodshed similar to what happened during the Vietnam War.
If we leave Iraq, we, the American people, will not actually fix the mess we made. Even if civil war or inconspicuous “chaos” does not ignite in Iraq, an immediate pullout will mean that we will never look back on the problems we created by invading, Bush assured. The President urged critics of the current war to “learn something from history” and “resist the allure of retreat.”
The invasion of Iraq was unjustified, to say the least. The country had no nuclear weapons, nor was there a link between al Qaeda and Saddam Hussein. George Bush lied to the American people, and Colin Powell lied to the United Nations.
Both men put the United States’ and other nations’ troops on the line to fight a war that was based on lies and falsehoods. Leaving a nation that is in the midst of a civil war and is plagued by the largest refugee crisis in the world, however, is unjustifiable from any ethical standpoint.
How can we solve the Iraqi crisis then? Immediate pullout of our troops with a set date is irresponsible, as Senator Hillary Clinton of New York stated in September 2005. “I don’t believe it’s smart to set a date for withdrawal. I don’t think you should ever telegraph your intentions to the enemy so they can await you,” she said.
Unlike other politicians who have proposed similar points of legislation, such as troop withdrawal and a troop surge, Senior Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Joe Biden, has proposed an idea of a three state solution.
This idea is the most basic and most simple position. Joe Biden was not the first to consider a “three state solution” in Iraq, which is loosely based off of the seven states formed after the Kosovo War that has been relatively successful.
The “three states” would include Kurdistan, a self-autonomous region in northern Iraq, populated by the Kurds, an ethnic minority of Iraq. The Sunnis and the Shiites, two different religious sects of Islam, which are in the midst of civil war, would control the two other states.
Critics claim that a move like this would be dividing a nation, as the British and French did almost 75 years ago. This new plan, however, would return Iraq to a nation formed along religious lines, instead of along oil reserve boarders.
The United States government must return to the drawing board on Iraq, and both Democrats and Republicans together must decide what solution will solve the twofold problem of Iraq; what will benefit our troops as well as the Iraqi people. We the people of the United States must prevent another Vietnam, both by helping our “boys” and those we leave behind.

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