It's about time the American media began unmasking John Kerry's Iraq pipe dream.
Kerry in recent appearances and interviews has been intensifying his effort to spotlight what he sees as the Bush administration's mistakes in Iraq � especially the failure to broaden international involvement � as a fundamental difference between the two candidates. But Kerry's proposals depend on changing the minds of foreign leaders who do not want to defy their electorates by sending forces into what many consider to be a U.S.-made mess.No France, no Germany, no more from Britain, no Japan, no Russia, no Arab countries. Who is left? More East Europeans? Central Americans?
"I understand why John Kerry is making proposals of this kind, but there is a lack of realism in them," Menzies Campbell, a British lawmaker who is a spokesman on defense issues for the Liberal Democratic Party, said in a typical comment. . . .
The French and German governments have made clear that sending troops is out of the question. British officials have made no such categorical statement, but they have expressed concern that their troops are overstretched.
Although Japan has supplied a 550-member noncombat force as a symbol of its international commitment, analysts there see little chance the nation would agree to send more.
Russia's ambassador to the United Nations, Andrei Denisov, ruled out a commitment of troops. "We are not going to send anybody there, and that's all there is to say," Denisov said. . . .
Kerry has at times said he would particularly like to bring in troops from Arab countries. But diplomats, including those from Arab nations, say they consider the scenario unlikely. The Iraqi interim government has for months excluded the possibility of any peacekeeping troops coming from immediate neighbors, in part because the Iraqi people would be suspicious of neighbors' intentions.
The recent collapse of a Saudi proposal to bring in peacekeeping troops from other Arab and Muslim countries also indicates the long odds against the idea.
I understand that it is the special job of a politician to speak all day long and never say anything. This 'Iraq plan' (which isn't a plan at all) is merely a place holder inserted into speeches whenever Kerry feels pressed to explain or is asked how his policies will differ from those of Bush; a long stretch of silence is rather uncomfortable and also violates the prime directive of every politician (see first sentence in this paragraph). Still, it is good to see somebody besides General Glut proclaim that re Iraq, this emperor-in-waiting has no clothes.