In March of 2003, the United States along with the United Kingdom and a few other countries sent troops to Iraq. Within weeks the regime of Saddam Hussein was defeated and the capital city of Iraq, Baghdad, had fallen in war. That war, although ephemeral in form, continues on to this day.
After what can be objectively seen as an eight-year war, it is time to bring an end to at least the overwhelming majority of our military presence in Iraq. There are many valid and idealistic reasons to conclude this war for the benefit of the nation and our general public. When considering any foreign policy and its effects, what must also be considered are its costs; most important to take note of is the relative effectiveness of a plan of action proportionate to its costs. Much like a car loan where the remaining payments and interest exceed the value of the vehicle, this war effort has become upside down (in more ways than one).
There are many tenets to a war such as this, unfortunately as time wears on there is a tendency for there to be a shift in the disparity between good and bad. There are the casualties, in the beginning phases they are perceived as necessary to reach the collective goals of our country, but over time, the tedium of such loss coupled with a decline in results makes for a less enthusiastic justification. In addition, as a world power, the actions of our country are relevant to all the other countries of the world and are thusly scrutinized accordingly. Our continued participation in an unpopular war has a non-positive effect on the perception of our country and its policy decisions. Not to mention that insofar as the rest of world can separate the average American citizens’ mores from said policy decisions, there is a bad precedent set as to how much control the average American consensus has over what goes on in our government. One of the most important tenets that comes to thought when discussing a grand scheme such as this along with abstract valuations of emotion and morale is the concept that is most often thought of when discussing value; actual fiscal value. This war is expensive, in the immediate (upfront costs) and with recurring costs caused by the loose ends (post-military health care, repair efforts, etc.) that it brings into existence. Finally, there are the soldiers themselves, war has a profound and mostly debilitating effect on those who participate in the front lines, for those who do not succumb to death, there is much mental, psychological & emotional damage that causes difficulty with reintegration into society & a disruption of family upon return among other things. The culmination of these points leads to the notion that this war is past its point of value, as will be proven in this paper, and must be discontinued.
One of the most obvious consequences of a war is the death toll. “4,442 U.S. servicemembers and 13 Defense Department civilians had been reported killed in the Iraq War.” (USA Today) While...