I have a friend who continues to maintain that the Iraq War was one of George W. Bush’s few “genius” maneuvers. And he’s not being tongue-in-cheek. He sees the endeavor as a success, and with Wednesday’s news of “Final US Combat Troops Withdrawing” he’d proudly affirm: “mission accomplished.”
My retort now is the same as it was 5 years ago when we first started arguing: how many lives make that “success” worthwhile? Is it a fair trade?
Here are some statistics from a source (http://antiwar.com/casualties) you may find dubious, but they document their sources, which appear credible:
|Since war began (3/19/03):||4415||3493|
|Since Capture of Saddam (12/13/03):||3954||3187|
|Since Handover (6/29/04):||3556||2860|
|Since Obama Inauguration (1/20/09):||187||88|
Is American military “mission accomplished” worth the cost?
I would argue without hesitation: absolutely not.