What I am about to say is so obvious that I am almost embarrassed to say it. Should not the Iraqi people be allowed to vote on a referendum to decide whether the US should stay or go? Our government made such a big deal about free elections in Iraq, and we saw so many images of smiling Iraqi citizens proudly extending their ink-stained thumbs after their elections, that it warmed nearly all Americans' hearts. I suggest we repeat that happy picture.
From my perspective, expressions of either support for or discontent with the American occupation have been largely anecdotal. We ought to employ our military to ensure the fairest vote possible, and let the people of Iraq express their opinion about whether or not the United States should continue to occupy their country. If the majority truly want us to stay, the Administration and its supporters will be vindicated; otherwise we should make a quick and orderly exit from their country.
I think the war was wrong from the outset, and our forces should leave Iraq, but it should not be up to me or other Americans to decide the fate of the Iraqis. I think an Iraqi referendum on our continued occupation would be great for both Iraq and the United States. Iraq would get what its majority truly wants, and the United States can save face, since we would either stay with the endorsement of the occupied people or we could abide by the Iraqi people's wishes and leave without appearing to have suffered defeat at the hands of the insurgents.
Sep 12 2007 - 9:33am