Philip Carter, Slate writer and correspondent for their "War Stories" column, and himself an Iraqi veteran, is calling for a withdrawal from Iraq. (Indeed, in May he outlined a plan for it.) I don't consider him to be the world's biggest dove, proof 1 of which might be the fact that he served in Iraq. You can object to war on principle and still serve in the Armed Forces, but that hardly qualifies you for pacifist-of-the-year. What I'm saying is, this is yet another call from someone who can hardly be characterized as a crazy left commie pinko effectively pro-terrorist weak-kneed girly man, but someone who a) seems to know what they're talking about and b) would likely support a politico-military "plan for victory" in lieu of withdrawing if, in their opinion, there was one. I've had something like this viewpoint for a while now, but it's nonetheless good to see it gaining steam, some years later than I'd've liked. (And while one may say, "Well, years ago we didn't know it would turn out like this," please see some of the other countries we've reconstructed post-WWII-reconstruction: Haiti (#1 poorest country in our hemisphere, very high intervention by the US for decades), Nicaragua (#2 poorest country in our hemisphere, high intervention, most of it illegal i.e. Iran-Contra), Afghanistan (not doing so hot), Guatemala (ended up helping a prolonged civil war continue with thousands of civilians killed), Greece, Brazil, Grenada, Libya, overthrowing the democratically elected Shah of Iran, and sundry other examples. In other words, there was no real reason to think intervention by the US was going to lead anywhere good in this case either. Go ahead, closely examine the history of US intervention -- results like those we've seen in Haiti, Nicaragua, and Iran are far more common than those for post WWII aid to Germany and Japan.
A distant cousin (but close childhood friend) once said that he wanted to go into the field of history to make sure that the US learned its lessons and never went completely the way of the British Empire through the course of making the same mistakes, for the love of God. He's since gone into a different area -- it doesn't seem like the slack's been taken up on this one, hmm?