For those of you that are students of history, there is a pertinent comparison of developments in Iraq versus those during the US Civil War… This is an excerpt from an interview with Victor Davis Hanson:
“Sherman was not liked. However, he understood one central fact, and I don’t want to be cynical, because it comes from Sherman, not me, that most people, not you and I on the right, or people like Howard Dean on the left, but most people have no ideology, the 80, 60, 70% in the middle, but they do react to the winning side…
And Sherman knew that — this is even more controversial — he knew that while he didn’t want to burn Atlanta, he didn’t want to kill people, he knew that in the ultimate judgment, if he took Atlanta, then that would sort of settle history’s assessment of him.
And I think Petraeus understands that. He secures Baghdad, and everything else, Abu Ghraib, Guantanamo, Fallujah, all that will be ancient history, and then people will come back on board, and it’ll be good.”