One of the charges lodged against Bush and Cheney is that they invaded Iraq as a way to secure American domination of the Iraqi oil fields. The dwindling supporters of Bubble-Boy's folly react to this charge with rightous indignation. "No,no," they cry, "America is not interested in oil, America is interested in finding weapons of mass destruction/overthrowing a bloody dictator/establishing democracy in the Middle East/whatever reason you like, but we are not interested in Iraq's oil." Then you get stories like the following.
Tony Snow today said that Bush saw Iraq being like South Korea, where American troops are there to guarantee Iraq's security, but not necessarily at the front. Well, here is the problem, the United States has been in South Korea for over 50 years, that's right, over 50 years. This means that Bush sees American involvement in Iraq for the better part of this century, or long after he, Cheney, and Rumsfeld are dead and gone.
What earthly reason could there be for American troops to be in Iraq for 50 years unless it is to make sure that America controls the oil fields of the Middle East? Having American troops in Iraq means that we have influence over the Saudis, the Iraqis, and the Iranians. All countries that have vast oil fields.
Of course, it also means that America will be the target of terrorist attacks for the foreseeable future. Contrary to what Bush likes to say, terrorist attacks have their own form of twisted logic. That logic is that terrorist attacks are almost always over the occupation of land by a power that the terrorists see as ill legitimate. What the terrorists want is that occupation to end and acts of terror is how they plan to accomplish that ending.
American troops in Iraq will be seen by many as an occupation and will become a magnet for terrorism. Groups like Al Qaeda will use their presence to rev up their followers and to justify new attacks on America. It will not necessarily be a situation like South Korea where the populace accepts American troops as necessary to protect it from invasion by the North Koreans.*
If the Bush Administration truly sees American troops in Iraq for the foreseeable future then obviously the idea that September will be some magic moment when Bush realizes that he needs to start getting America out of Iraq is just a ruse. A ruse with tragic consequences for American soldiers.
*South Korean acceptance of American troops seems to be increasingly a reluctant acceptance and this from a population which still remembers the invasion from the North in 1950. You can read the whole article about Snow's comments by clicking on the link in this entry's title.