Coalition of the More Willing Before You Shot our Agent

“YOU TELL THAT TO SILVIO BERLUSCONI!” So shouted the President in a peculiar irrational moment at one of last year’s ceremonial “presidential debates.” Well, Silvio Berlusconi just thought of something to tell to the President: “Thanks for shooting my agent and the journalist hostage whose life he just saved. It gives me an excuse to withdraw Italy’s 3,000 troops from your not so excellent adventure.”
Berlusconi himself is running for reelection in 2006, and kind of needs the heavy Mesopotamian albatross off of his political neck, as he removes his (4th largest) 3,000 troop contingent; South Korea’s 3,600 are third and the UK’s 8,000 (you thought it was more, didn’t you?) is second; we are carrying over 160,000 troops. You figure out the math to decide if our Coalition of the Window-dressing is, in fact, a coaltion at all (for Christ’s sake, the British had a higher proportion of Hessians here to occupy US than we have of non-Americans there!) Query if Tony “I hate my own country so I’ll join the irrationality of yours” Blair will join the wave (Holland and Ukraine and Poland are in process of their own draw downs; anyone remember Australia? They seem to be good and gone, mostly!) .
Well, no matter. This WAS after all, an American policy. God knows we’re paying for it, so it may as well be our people getting killed to advance it, right? Well, as I’ve been mentioning in recent posts, we’re in for a penny, in for a pound. Our oil consumption profligacy forces us to import oil, which in turn, forces us to defend Middle East oil, has us kind of boxed in. As someone I know once said, “I hope you like the Middle East. It’s YOURS, America.”