Therefore, once U.S. forces leave, it is almost inevitable that an anti-Western, anti-U.S. regime will arise.
The presidents I served under don't have anything to do with my politics.
Military officers from different countries, when they meet each other, tend to sort of fall in love, become mutual admiration societies, at the expense of realities.
It was not in our interest to enter Iraq in the first place.
In World War II in Germany, we had a ration for one U.S. soldier, or one allied soldier for every twenty inhabitants. The ratio in Iraq is about one for a hundred and sixty.
In reality, I don't think that many of the policies we've attempted to apply to deal with it are going to have any serious effect.
In fact, it struck me when we invaded last year that if we did it without European and East Asian support, we were risking losing our alliance in Europe in exchange for Iraq, and that is a very undesirable exchange.
I've decided that the political context is such that the only way reform will finally come about in the Russian military is that the deterioration goes beyond the point to which these old generals can stand up there and resist it.
I will make a general statement that we have not had anything like the policy of holding people in high office responsible for their acts that I think we should.
I have never belonged to a party. I don't have party affiliation.
I don't think that the war serves U.S. interests. I think Osama bin Laden's interests and the Iranian interests are very much served by it, and it's becoming a huge drain on our resources both material and political.
So the idea that you could put Kurds, Shiite Arabs, and Sunni Arabs in a nice, liberal, federal system in Iraq in a short amount of time, six months or a year, boggles the mind.
We've already seen proliferation. We started it with Britain, then France. Then we benignly let the Israelis do it. The Pakistanis and the Indians have recently done it. The Chinese have nuclear weapons.
Second, recent polls over there show that the majority of Iraqis want us to leave precipitously.
I remember serving in Vietnam in that war, and many of us at the major Lieutenant Colonel, colonel level were frustrated that no one in the U.S. wanted to debate it that way.
Our presence in Iraq risks turning it into a country that could become the base for terrorist operations and organizations like al Qaeda.
To say that you now trust the Russian military command and control system because some Russian general told you from the bottom of his heart that's the case, strikes me as most unrealistic.
Also, General Zinni, who commanded central command, was very much opposed to the war in the first place, as I was. We were both quoted to that effect in February of 2003.
While people out there on the spot certainly have to be held accountable for what they've done personally, the chain of command responsibility for this strikes me as just as important and should be dealt with.
Once we destroyed the Saddam regime, we knew there was going to be a civil war.
But I would make it unambiguously clear that we are going to withdraw, and if Iraq falls into civil war and if all these unhappy things occur, we're just going to have to accept them.
We need to go to the niceties of approaching the U. N. and let them have a chance to take it over, but we should set some sort of date and begin to move out and leave it to whoever takes over.
The whole notion of land property rights in the Arab world is different from that in Europe.
It was, however, in the interest of Osama bin Laden for us to destroy a secular Arab leader it was very much in the interest of the Iranians because they wanted revenge against Saddam Hussein for Iraq's invasion in 1980.
Firing off 1,000 or 500 or 2,000 nuclear warheads on a few minutes' consideration has always struck me as an absurd way to go to war.