Thomas Friedman argues there are six measures of success for this war. I agree with all of them but #4, and have a slight quibble with #2.

I am not opposed to an independent Kurdistan emerging from this war. The Kurds are in no real way “Iraqi” and they have a right to national self-determination.

I agree that the war will not be successful without the removal of Saddam from power. It does not, however, follow that this is therefore “a war against one man.” If Saddam were removed but one of his sons or cronies emerged as the leader of a Saddam-like regime, this war would still be a failure. The war is about regime change first and disarmament second–the opposite of the way it has been portrayed.

With those exceptions noted, I believe we will indeed achieve each of Friedman’s goals. Military victory is a given, only the cost in blood and treasure is uncertain. And Friedman’s scorecard seems to be one that the Coalition is using as well.

FILED UNDER: Iraq War, , , ,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.