I once saw a piece of graffiti written on the inside of a blue Porta-John on Camp Victory in Baghdad. The scrawl said: “OIF 1, OIF II, OIF III…How much fucking freedom do these Iraqis need?”
The joke, if I can call it that, was about the name of the and length of the American mission in Iraq–Operation Iraqi Freedom, or, in military acryonomese, OIF. About every nine months or so, OIF would go up in number–I think we’re currently on OIF 13 or something, though I have to check that.
Remember, this war a war that was supposed to be over in May 2003, with only about 30,000 troops there by the end of that year.
I was reminded of the graffiti comic’s words this morning when I read about the military’s re-branding effort: starting in September, Operation Iraqi Freedom is going to be called Operation New Dawn. OIF to OND.
The idea, per the Defense Department, is that we need a new name to help “synchronize strategic communications initiatives.” Mainly, it’s another step to officially send the message that the war is over and the Americans are leaving.
Anyway, if I were going to scrawl something in a bathroom on military base in Baghdad(which I wouldn’t do, and never have done) maybe it would be this: Iraqi freedom is finished because a new dawn has arrived…Hah.