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The nature of failure

I don’t have anything really brilliant to say about the Baghdad bombing. What’s there to say? A lot of people died — a lot more people died, I should say, because it’s been a busy summer for terrorists in Iraq — and that’s depressing.

The buzz is that it was an Al Qaeda operation. Oddly, Jay Bremer disagrees. “These are probably people left over from the old regime who are simply fighting a rear guard action by attacking Iraq’s assets.” I’m not sure what that means; the Bush administration has been pushing the theory that the US occupation will act as flypaper, and if the UN bombing was not carried out by Iraqis, that would support their theory. But maybe Bremer just thinks Bush is wrong.

I’ll say this, though. If Iraq becomes a breeding zone for anger against the US, we’ve failed no matter what. Doesn’t matter if we’ve pulled out or if we’re losing ten soldiers a day; we’ve failed.


  1. Is the Bush administration actually pushing “flypaper”? I thought that was just people trying to make “Bring ’em on,” sound like something a rational human being who had graduated from high school might say.

  2. t.rev t.rev

    Dude, every-fucking-place is a breeding zone for anger against the US. *livejournal* is a breeding zone for anger against the US. I don’t know how damaging anger is, but trying to avoid it doesn’t seem to have a very good track record in recent decades.

  3. Granted, but there are degrees. Our anti-UN fanatics have killed slightly fewer people than their anti-UN fanatics.

  4. t.rev t.rev

    So we’re breeding anger against the *UN*? That’s different. And who will that inconvenience?

  5. Nope, we’re breeding anger against people perceived as Westerners. Saying ‘they’re doing this to threaten the US’ or ‘they don’t want the UN occupying the country’ is a mistake (and I’ve seen people making both of those). We risk reinforcing the perception of the West as a conquering regime.

    And yeah, it’s pretty difficult to avoid that, because in many ways it’s accurate. My point being that we’re looking the inevitable consequences straight in the eye.

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