Ed Koch: Exiting Iraq


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I will no longer defend the policy of keeping U.S. troops in Iraq to assist the Iraqi central government in the ongoing civil war. While our men and women in the military suffer casualties daily, the Iraqi government refuses to take the major political actions required to end the civil war.


The U.S. government told the Iraqi leaders that it needed to achieve 18 goals. Our administration’s recent report to the U.S. Congress on how close the Iraqis have come to achieving those goals states that eight have been achieved, no progress has been made on eight others, and two have had mixed results.

With regard to the most important goals, which include bringing the Sunni population into the government with the Shia by removing the bans against those (primarily Sunnis) who had served in the prior Baathist regime of Saddam Hussein, the grade was zero.

The Iraqi government similarly received a zero for failing to enact legislation that would equitably divide the oil income it receives among the three ethnic regions of Kurds, Sunni and Shia. Currently the Kurds and Shia share the oil revenues and have no problem doing so because the oil fields are located in the areas they control. The Sunni areas have very few oil fields.

For well over a year, I have urged the administration to issue an ultimatum to our Muslim allies of Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Jordan and Kuwait, all Sunni nations and our NATO allies in Europe. Unless they joined us with boots on the ground and contributed to the ongoing cost of the war against Al Qaeda and the insurgency in both Iraq and Afghanistan, we would leave.

In September, our new commanding general on the ground, David Petraeus, will report on whether the military surge is working.

The American people no longer support our presence in Iraq. They made that clear in the 2006 congressional election when the majority in both Houses of Congress shifted to the Democrats. My own position has been that we were better off fighting Islamic terrorism in Iraq than abandoning and having that battle shift to American soil, which I am certain will happen when we depart Iraq. But my support for remaining in Iraq was conditioned on our allies joining us in Afghanistan and Iraq. Sadly, very few have done so. Instead, many of those same allies criticize us for staying in Iraq.

Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri Kamal al-Maliki stated over the weekend, “We say with confidence that we are capable, God willing, of taking full responsibility for the security file if the international forces withdraw in any time they wish.”
The civil war escalates. This week alone, on a single day more than 100 Iraqi civilians were killed and near 200 injured in two car bombings in the ongoing civil war. Our soldiers cannot end the civil war for them. Their soldiers have to do that.

I propose that we do what the British did when they withdrew their troops from the historic Palestine Mandate they had assumed in 1922. They simply notified the United Nations that they would be gone by May 15, 1948, and they were, leaving the U.N. to find a solution to the ongoing civil war.

I believe we can be out of Iraq in a few months if we want to leave, departing by way of Turkey in the north and via Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and Jordan in the south and west.

We should prepare for the battles that will take place on American soil by the Islamic forces of terror that are engaged in a war that will be waged by them against Western civilization for at least the next 30 years. They must be defeated for if, God forbid, they defeat us they will put us, the infidels, to the sword. They refer to Christians, Jews, Hindus, Buddhists and other Muslims they disagree with religiously as infidels.

Remember the words of Khalid Sheikh Mohammed after he killed Danny Pearl on February 1, 2002: “I decapitated with my blessed right hand the head of the American Jew, Daniel Pearl, in the City of Karachi, Pakistan.” He is the same Khalid Sheikh Mohammed that CNN referred to as “the suspected mastermind of the September 11, 2001, terror attacks.” He is now in American custody.

Remember, they have threatened to kill Pope Benedict XVI. Remember also how we refused to take seriously the threats Adolf Hitler made in his book, Mein Kampf. There were only 80 million Germans at the start of World War II. There are now 1.4 billion Muslims worldwide. There is still not yet a majority who subscribe to the Wahabist fundamentalist belief popular in Saudi Arabia that they have a duty to kill the infidel who will not convert or pay tribute, but there are tens of millions of Muslim fanatics, including English doctors and their supporters, who believe that is their sacred duty. Wake up, America.

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