Bush Maintains ending US Occupation of Iraq will Infuriate Terrorists
I can’t imagine why he says that. If we weren’t occupying Iraq, how would that infuriate al-Qaeda and the Muslim radical fringe?
Can you imagine the discussions in the cave in Waziristan?
“They got out of Iraq!”
“Damn them, this is unacceptable.”
“How dare they leave a Muslim country alone?”
“They are imperialists,aren’t they? Why don’t they imperialize? I am confused.”
“The Iraqis are rejoicing, saying that they are independent and can practice Islam freely.”
“It is horrible, I tell you, horrible.”
“It cries out for vengeance! It is not acceptable for them not to colonize us!”
“I say we hit them where it hurts.”
Or you could try here. Robert Pape is a social scientist and has crunched the numbers.
As for the argument that withdrawing from Iraq will encourage the terrorists and make them feel victorious, we can turn Cheney’s argument around. What had we withdrawn from in the mid to late 1990s that precipitated 9/11? Bin Laden cited Beirut (two decades earlier!) and Yemen (where we just stopped refueling). This was a pitiful attempt on Bin Laden’s part to convince himself that the US is a paper tiger, not a realistic accounting of strategy! Do Bush and Cheney really want to rely on al-Qaeda propaganda in making their own policies?