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British General Says we should Admit Defeat

A former General in the British Army says that the US and the UK should admit defeat and withdraw from Iraq.

General Sir Michael Rose also said he understood why insurgents were attacking coalition forces and said he believed they were right to try and force invading troops out of the country. Asked on BBC2's Newsnight if he thought the insurgents were right to try to get the American forces out of Iraq, he said: "Yes I do.

"As Lord Chatham said, when he was speaking on the British presence in North America, he said 'if I was an American, as I am an Englishman, as long as one Englishman remained on American native soil, I would never, never, never lay down my arms'.

The Iraqi insurgents feel exactly the same way. I don't excuse them for some of the terrible things they do, but I do understand why they are resisting the Americans."

He added: "It is the soldiers who have been telling me from the front line that the war they have been fighting is a hopeless war, that they cannot possibly win it and the sooner we start talking politics and not military solutions, the sooner they will come home and their lives will be preserved." Asked if that meant admitting defeat, he said: "Of course we have to admit defeat.

"The British admitted defeat in North America and the catastrophes that were predicted at the time never happened.

In the coming days, I'll be supplying some examples of the incendiary rhetoric among British Parliamentarians agonizing over the question of whether to continue fighting the American rebels for control of the colonies. The rhetoric used then was very similar to what we hear today in the US Congress' debates over the Iraq War. Ultimately, the British made the difficult but correct decision to abandon the colonies. Eventually, we will do the same in Iraq.

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Comments (1)

Paul Hamilton:

I'm reminded of WW2, when Hitler invaded the Soviet Union. When it first happened many of the people there, who hated living under the brutal dictatorship of Stalin welcomed the Germans as liberators.

Then the Germans instituted their scorched-earth policies and started acting on their beliefs that the Soviets were subhuman and started methodically killing and abusing them.

I'm sure that when we went into Iraq, there were also many people who believed the stories we were telling them about how we were there to free them from Saddam and how we'd bring a new day to Iraq.

Then we allowed the maniacs to riot in the streets and loot everything in sight -- except for the oil ministry. We allowed the most brutal and insane elements in Iraq society to help themselves from Saddam's vast stores of weapons that we didn't bother to secure in our mad rush to Baghdad.

And over the next months and years, our troops, perhaps driven mad by the never-ending tours of duty, and the Bush administration's "stop loss" orders which did not allow them to leave the army even when their enlistment was fulfilled became a reflection of the chaos we created. Just this evening on MSNBC there was a story which stated that a poll of soldiers serving in Iraq showed that over half of Marines and almost half of Army personnel wouldn't even report a case to their superiors of a fellow soldier killing an innocent Iraqi civilian.

And we wonder why we are losing. We wonder why they never did -- or never will -- throw flowers at us for saving them from Saddam.

And this is why so many of us are saying that it's all over but the bleeding and the best thing we can do for ourselves and for Iraq is to bring the troops home. Yes, there will certainly be a temporary upsurge of violence, but let's not kid ourselves -- we aren't STOPPING the slaughter by being there, we're just dragging out the misery.


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