One of my pet peeves in the arena of politics is pollster’s phrasing of questions. More often than not, they’re phrased poorly. Case in point today: a Pew poll asking about Iraq, specifically the Iraq “war”. The problem I have is with the larger message. Are we battling the Iraqi government and military today? No. Our military is fighting against guerilla elements, only some of which having an association with the Iraqi government. No, the United States is occupying Iraq, against their will and against the will of Americans. Nobody in the corporate media and its lackeys is willing to admit to this, however.
And here is why it matters: if the debate about Iraq centered around our occupation and not a war against its forces, more Americans would demand an end to that occupation. Admittedly, a majority of Americans continue to think the Iraq invasion was a bad idea and a majority also want American troops to come home. In the face of Bush’s Bailout, which could cost $700 billion or more, Americans would be quite adamant about returning troops stateside, recognizing the continuing costs of occupying Iraq are too much to handle.
The quixotic wording of Pew’s questions has led to 58% surveyed saying the Iraq “war” is going well and 58% saying the U.S. is winning. It’s the winning question that really gets to me. We won the war, a very, very short time after we invaded. Since Mission Accomplished, U.S. forces have been occupying Iraq. The Iraqis continue to have no successful political progress, despite the escalation Bush ordered last year. As such, how is America winning the occupation? What is the end goal of that occupation that America is theoretically moving toward? Organizations like Pew won’t ask those questions. And this country continues to bleed $12 billion per month as well as more servicemember casualties because of it.