THE White House ought to be the least surprised by the millions taking to streets around the world, crying ‘Enough!’, enough of the blood spilling that the crazed power lust of a few brought to Iraq exactly five years ago this week.

Enough of the lies, double-talk and political hypocrisy that keep war drums beating and fires of hatred fuelled enough for the madness to continue. Enough of ‘shock and awe’ and ‘democratisation drive’ like catchwords that lend political mileage to a despicable crime — murder of hundreds of thousands for a cause that has been long lost. Enough, in short, of the war in Iraq!

Yet by the goings on in Washington and Baghdad, there is practically nothing to suggest that the carnage in Iraq will be brought to a halt anytime soon. Even Democrats campaigning on promises of a pronounced shift in the war policy deliberately remain vague about details, since there is nothing to offer as change. Iraq has simply entered the phase where things will continue to worsen with the United States forced to remain committed until the whole house of cards of the farcical war against terrorism comes down crashing, and that may not be too far off.

Still, no matter how grim the reality, a soul searching cost-benefit recap is in order as the ugliness stemming from Iraq completes its first half-decade. Boasts of democracy and ballot successes appear as lame as those making them because the story since Saddam’s fall has only been one of constant degeneration in Iraq’s social and political life alike.

The so-called only people’s government in the region is continuously shamed by terrorist elements having a free run, killing, raping and maiming with reckless abandon while the official machinery tries its best of learning from its peers in Washington about straight faced politically correct rhetoric to justify its existence. The more the occupation forces point to ending Saddam’s brutal dictatorship and ushering in democracy as their successes, the more people appear nostalgic for an era when most could see through the average day with enough water and electricity.

As bombs go off on every other road corner without missing a day, inflation and unemployment flirt with the heavens, and parents fear even sending their children to schools, the Bush and Maliki dispensations only embarrass themselves by attempting to paint optimistic pictures of a land whose people have been reduced to one of the least fortunate anywhere in the world.

While a feasible exit route may remain elusive for some time to come, those running the war must make a start by publicly admitting the magnanimity of their collective folly. It is just not fair to the Iraqis, and concerned quarters across the world, that the masterminds behind this war crime have their day in the sun before simply retiring to a comfortable drawing room.

The buck has to stop somewhere, and the millions marching in all parts of the world to push the White House into stopping this war express appreciable solidarity with suffering Iraqis, hoping to create enough noise for the ‘enough’ message to reach those pulling the strings.

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