July 17, 2007 -- An American veteran who claims to have participated in more than 300 combat operations in both Iraq wars — and who has grown frustrated with the current war's direction — offered a five-page "solution" to ending the U.S. occupation of Iraq — on eBay.
"I am offering the winning bidder the solution to the war in Iraq," the eBayer — identified by the New York Post as 38-year-old Army Capt. Thad Krasnesky, now stationed at Fort Hamilton in Brooklyn, N.Y. — wrote in his item description.
"This is not a flippant or facetious offer," the listing continued. "There will be no joke forwarded to you if you are the winning bidder. If you are the high bidder, I will send you a viable solution to the conflict in which we are currently engaged."
With the cost of the Iraq War continuing to escalate, its popularity at an all-time low among Americans, and partisan politics slowing policy change in Washington, Krasnesky has apparently tapped into a market eager for answers.
The listing, posted over the weekend and originally open to bidding through July 22, quickly generated well over 100 online bids. On Monday, Krasnesky's blueprint had been seen by more than 10,000 window shoppers and had spawned at least one copycat listing. By 8 p.m., the bidding process had maxed out at $99,999,999 and this morning, the eBay listing is no longer posted to the online auction site.
"This war has currently cost us somewhere around FOUR HUNDRED BILLION DOLLARS and over 3,500 American lives," Krasnesky wrote. "My buy-it-now price of 5 million seems perfectly reasonable by comparison. I'm not even asking you to risk your life."
Krasnesky did not respond to e-mails and a phone message left by ABC News. In a March 2007 article in the Christian Science Monitor, he was interviewed about his experience recruiting Arab-speaking soldiers, and was identified as the company commander for U.S. Army recruitment in Brooklyn.
In the posting, he identifies himself as an Army intelligence officer with a background in the Middle East and a proficiency in Arabic. He writes that he spent time in Iraq during Operation Desert Storm as an enlisted soldier, and returned to the current war as an intelligence officer.
"I do not lack courage or the ability to act," he wrote, adding that he also headed various humanitarian efforts in the war-torn country.
"I do not demonize any group for the actions of a few, but neither do I deify any group in some misguided attempt to show my open-mindedness," he wrote. "I have grieved for lost friends, both American and Iraqi, military and civilian."
Bidding began at just $1, but the price of the advertised Iraq solution quickly took off. To the winner, Krasnesky has offered a two-hour sit-down to explain his plan.
Krasnesky, a married father of two, told the New York Post that he would continue to fight the war, even if it meant losing his job. He also, however, said he would return to war if ordered to do so.
The eBay listing concludes with an appeal to potential legislative buyers.
"If you work for a senator or congressman or possible presidential hopeful," he added, "maybe you should get everyone in the office to chip in and purchase my solution for them."
But if a private citizen in fact wins the five-page plan, it remains unclear what he or she could practically reap from it.