But a debacle is what it is - the loss to progressive opinion of half a generation or more of those who might otherwise have been expected to pass on a mature wisdom to younger others. Instead, this shameful legacy.
In his usual intense and committed way Norm pins down the problem with much of the anti-war opinion expressed in the press. Despite still believing that we were wrong, it makes me sick to see some of the people this aligns me with. There was a good, liberal-based argument against the war. It didn't depend on specious parallels between the US and Nazi Germany - although such parallels can be drawn and still have a certain degree of substance - the so-called Patriot Act for example.
We are no longer arguing against a war however. Instead we have a country which for whatever reason has suffered intensely and is still suffering. The US/UK and their allies must bear some of the responsibility for those conditions and must bear some of the responsibility for putting it right. Should we pull out now, we would be handing the country either to those we supposedly targetted in the war or to the worst excesses of US economic imperialism (remember the proposal to change the mobile phone system in Iraq to that used in the US in order to keep out European - especially French - companies?). To do either would be so despicable that I cannot understand the motivation of those who continue to argue for a pull out now. Whether we like it or not the world has changed. We made a mess - we have to accept the responsibility for clearing it up.