This is shaping up to be quite the active political season. On the one hand, you have the Republicans trying desperately trying to salvage what little political clout they have left after their trouncing in the ’06 elections. On the other hand, you have the Democrats who are trying to not only strengthen their already majority-backed agendas, but they are also in a showdown with President Bush over war funding.
And this is just on one front.
On the other front, you have the pending presidential elections. Many say that the election season really gets started with the first debate, which happens to be tonight. The campus of South Carolina State in Orangeburg hosted the first debate of the season for either party. On the ticket for tonight’s debate were front runners Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, along with the other 6 primary candidates: Joe Bidden, Christopher Dodd, John Edwards, Mike Gravel, Dennis Kucinich, and Bill Richardson. The debate, which was simulcast by MSNBC on the internet and their cable channel, proved to show just how adept some were to political debate and how some were not. The South Carolina debate was the first of many for the Dems and the first of very many for both parties.
On the other front:
Congress is sending the white house that bill. It’s the one the Dems wanted (in some form or another), and the Republicans love to hate. This is the bill that contains that much-debated ‘non-binding resolution’ that spells out a timetable of events for the remainder of the Iraqi war. Most notably, the timetable states that the pull-out must begin no later than October 1 of this year.The heart of this debate is really one of semantics. One side calls what’s going on in Iraq a “civil war”. The other side calls it “sectarian violence”. What’s the difference? Well, “sectarian violence” denotes two or more sects, or divisions of population, fighting over whatever they want to fight over. The term “civil war”, especially to Americans, really denotes a country divided with large groups supporting at most two opposing national agendas. Now here’s where it can get a bit confusing. The situation in Iraq actually falls under both definitions. On the one hand, there are many religious sects fighting over land, political power, and revenge for what the other sects have done to them. At the same time, however, there is a larger Sunni vs. Shiite conflict that’s dominating the whole of the country.
This begs the question “what do we do?” Do we stay and try to stop the sectarian violence and try to bring all interested parties to the table? Or do we cut our losses, let the civil war play out however it will without our unwanted (and unneeded, I think) intervention? After all, if, by some chance, we do happen to end the rampant sectarian unrest in Iraq, there’s still that nagging civil war thing to fight. And lest face it, if a husband and wife are fighting over whatever, it’s best to just sit it out and let things take their natural progression. After all, if you jump in the middle (like we did), both will come after you.