Making progress in Iraq

I don’t know what to make of the claims that we’re finally making progress in Iraq, because we’ve been lied to so many times already. So this is significant:

U.S. Rep. Brian Baird said Thursday that his recent trip to Iraq convinced him the military needs more time in the region, and that a hasty pullout would cause chaos that helps Iran and harms U.S. security.

“I believe that the decision to invade Iraq and the post-invasion management of that country were among the largest foreign-policy mistakes in the history of our nation. I voted against them, and I still think they were the right votes,” Baird said in a telephone interview from Washington, D.C.

“But we’re on the ground now. We have a responsibility to the Iraqi people and a strategic interest in making this work.”

…Baird said he would not say this if he didn’t believe two things:

• “One, I think we’re making real progress.”

• “Secondly, I think the consequences of pulling back precipitously would be potentially catastrophic for the Iraqi people themselves, to whom we have a tremendous responsibility … and in the long run chaotic for the region as a whole and for our own security.”

Baird was my Congressman when I lived in Washington, and I’ve been getting his constituent e-mails for years. If he believes we’re finally making progress in Iraq, then so do I. It’s one thing for invasion-boosters (as I was) to claim progress, as they’ve pretty much been doing that all along, but when invasion-bashers make these claims, it’s news.

Link via Protein Wisdom.

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