A Sad Day

Today, March 19, 2013, is a tragic anniversary.

With one exception: It is the 10th birthday of my dog, Red, a fine Borzoi, who is a splendid companion and steady friend. Happy Birthday, Red.

But it is the 10th anniversary of the unjustified, immoral, wrong-headed, foolish, ill-conceived and flat-out wrong war against the Saddam Hussein regime in Iraq.

I hold no brief for Saddam and his perverse sons and dreadful reign of terror. But Iraqis, in time, would have dealt with Saddam. It was only George W. and Dick Cheney and Paul W. and Don R. who thought we had to do it for them.

Actually, what they thought — to the degree they thought it through at all — was that they could topple Saddam quickly (right) and get out promptly(wrong), and a Jeffersonian Democracy would bloom in the Iraqi desert in his wake (Really wrong.) And, they could finish what George H.W. left unfinished a decade earlier. Sheer fantasy.

So they listened to the siren song of Ahmed Chalabi and other Iraqi hucksters about how we would be welcomed as liberators and all would be well.

Instead, we spent $2.2 trillion and 4,200 American lives and countless Iraqi lives to produce what? A fractured, violent excuse for a country that is likely to split in thirds, with Kurds running the show in the north, Sunnis in the center and Shiites in the south.

Hardly worth the price.

Anyway. Red had a fine birthday, even if he didn’t know it was his day. He got an extra treat after dinner.