Monday, November 21, 2005

Why are we listening?

At best, now that all of the excuses for entering this confrontation have been shown to be lacking, the Iraq war has been shown to be what its creators intended it to be - a single (and in my opinion misguided) battle in the War On Terror (WOT). This reality leads me to the opinion that no valid debate can occur if this battle is treated as if its absolute victory is necessary in order to win this war. The fact that the current administration is taking this stubborn stand is the very reason that the American people have given those against the war (in all their variations) there current elevated status.

The reason that more and more Americans are giving a favorable ear to these dissenting voices is because having "failure is not an option" as a battle plan is no longer good enough - not after three years and thousands of deaths. What the American people are beginning to realize is that they want leaders who can effectively adapt to whatever reality the enemy creates in this particular battle and in the many future ones which will inevitably occur. Leaders who can innovate toward a victory that, if necessary, is good enough to make progress in the WOT. Leaders who are creative in the way that they use existing American assets and in the way that they develop new ones.

The dilemma for America is that at the very time that we need an adaptable, innovative, and creative president we find that we only have a stubborn and stay the course one. A president who puts loyalty above performance and stubbornness before rationality.

The real scope of this debate goes beyond what needs to occur with respect to the single battle in the WOT that some saw in Iraq. It really is a debate about the kind of leaders that America needs to ultimately win in the WOT. The one thing that I know for certain is that with each of their stubborn inactions I become more and more aware that our current leaders are not those leaders.

And this is why Americans are engaged in this debate with both their ears and their words. Their intent is not to find the absolute solution - it is with the hope of hearing a leader.