The news from the latest Democratic debate is that most of the candidates admitted that they might not immediately pull troops from Iraq.

When the left wing activists have been pressuring them to say the opposite, why would even someone like Obama who opposed the war in Iraq, hedge his bets?

The first reason is that the removal of US troops would lead to chaos. The dirty little secret is that there is a chaotic sitution in the region, and only dictatorships keep the hatreds under control. The danger is that denying democratic outlets for such ideas is like a pressure cooker: And one only has to look at the hundreds of thousands killed when the former Yugoslavia imploded into a regional civil war with ethnic hatred.

The low grade civil war in Iraq is just now getting under control. But removing the “moderate” influence of the US Troops before the Iraqi police and army can take their place is not an overnight work.

And if the positive trends in the middle East continue, any Democratic candidate who limits their choices based on old data is likely to find the world has changed and his or her position is now passe.

And those on the left who cite Viet Nam to prove such insurgencies cannot be defeated ignore that similar communist insurgencies in many other countries, from El Salvador to Malaysia to Luzon, have been defeated, and that jihadi insurgencies in Asia are not in good shape: Indonesia has recently shut down their own Alqaeda funded insurgency, with the Philippines being not far behind.

RayRobinson is publishing a new book about the isolation, collapse and destruction of foreign Al Qaeda  in Afghanistan.

What is important is that he finds links between the recent German jihadi arrests and the German troops success in Afghanistan. (and two kidnappings of Germans in that country, one of whom has been rescued, as a way to remove the German troops).

What has changed in the last year however is Europe: Both France and Germany have elected more pro American leaders, despite their traditional Anti American press (which hates Bush almost as much as they hated Reagan in the 1980’s).

The dirty little secret is that a simplistic view of the war on the ideology of Islamofascism is not limited to Iraq, and that one can argue from now to doomsday about if the US should go to war, but if one is aiming to be president, one has to take into consideration all the “ifs” and decide on the least bad choice.

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Nancy Reyes is a retired physician living in the rural Philippines. Her website is Finest Kind Clinic and Fishmarket. 

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