Pull My Finger Conservatism

|

Says Jonah Goldberg:

Gotta love the cover of the NY Post.

I don't think you gotta, necessarily. For a while it surely seemed cool to have popularized a catchphrase that made reflexive bashing of Iraq War doubters a little easier so the glorious liberation could go forward. But doesn't that look less awesome in retrospect?

OK, even if it doesn't, can't we agree that people that respond to even the "Ahhh, fuck it" recommendations of Baker and co. like this are dangerous idiots? (Talking about the Post brain trust now, not Goldberg.)

UPDATE: As usual, Roy Edroso sees the same thing and has a much more entertaining response.

NEXT: Samurai Knock Over Gas Station

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Dave, if the “Post brain trust” is a bunch of “dangerous idiots,” and Jonah thinks they’re cool, doesn’t that make him a “dangerous idiot” too? Or are you afraid that Jonah’s gonna kick your ass if you get too personal?

  2. As far as I can tell, Jonah just thinks it’s cool to see his/The Simpsons catchphrase going strong. He didn’t endorse the Post’s opinion.

  3. AHHHHH God-Damnit. Every time I click on an NRO link my head explodes, and growing back a new one really hurts. Jonah Goldberg is pure evil. He deserves to have his eyeballs plucked out and the sockets filled with salt.

    Now that the Republicans took a thrubbing in the last election, can’t we start ignoring their cheerleaders? Plllleeeeeease.

  4. Alan Vanneman,

    One can find dangerous idiots cool, in an entertaining way, without being one.

    Actually, not being one is part of the coolness of being entertained by them!

    Also, as much as I admire Mr. Goldberg, he does not strike me as the “ass kicking” sort. If it were between him and Gore Vidal I would put my money on Vidal.

  5. “…can’t we agree that people … like this are dangerous idiots? (Talking about the Post brain trust now, not Goldberg.)”

    Why not? Unless you merely want to remove the “dangerous” qualifier. Jonah Goldberg is a world-class idiot, and I could live a long and happy life without being further subjected to his excreta- er, “thoughts and opinions.”

  6. That’s funny as hell, Guy.

    Anyway, I think people are overstating the ramifications of the commission.

    It’s true purpose, in my opinion anyway, is to grab the back of George W’s santimonious, smarmy prick of a head and rub his nose in the fact that he’s dragged the country into a tarbaby of a cluster fuck.

    The most substantive parts of the report have less to do with how to proceed and more to do with how “grave and deteriorating” things are.

    So I see this as George Sr.’s way of slapping some sense into the boy by proxy for disrespecting his daddy’s judgement.

    The religious right wackos and the neocons are getting a richly deserved slap-down by the only guys with any credibility in the Middle East – the realpolitik players that won the First Gulf War.

  7. “jonah Goldberg is pure evil”.

    Wow, doesn’t leave much room for those who : throw people into wood chippers (Hussein), spread feces on a child to bring attention to one’s self (Sharpton), or get head from an underling and call her a liar for her troubles (no name needed here), but maybe ‘pure evil’ just doesn’t mean what I think it means.

  8. madpad,

    Why thank you. Now for the over-due link to my /. journal (don’t worry, the whole thing is reprinted here with my permission:

    That Iraq Report
    Thursday December 07, @10:03AM
    Montag Newswire
    7 December 2006
    65 Years After “The date that will live in infamy.”

    The Iraq report must have been ghost-written by sports writers while the panel was in Georgetown knocking back martinis and Single Malt Scotch.

    ‘The USA is not going to win unless they start scoring more points’ is a perfect summation of that ‘report’.

    Apparently they were getting paid by the word.

    Any of you pro writers who have done these reports, please feel free to chime in and verify.

    English teachers, please go back to torturing your students with random references to the Harbrace Style Manual and spare us how valuable ‘wordiness’ can be.

  9. I don’t know, doubled.

    If the evil room is getting crowded, maybe it has something to do with all those folks who’ve made a cottage industry over the past few years using “evil” to describe homosexuals, liberals and war dissenters.

  10. madpad,

    Ah, common ground. I don’t understand why hot girl on girl action is ‘evil’ either. I think it is beautiful! All of my porn is homosexual porn as described in the previous sentence.

    However, the other two you mention are quite evil. Don’t forget Leftists.

  11. doubled,

    Rev. Sharpton did not spread feces on Tawana Brawley.

    Also, it’s interesting that you think that getting a BJ and lying about it is pure evil.

  12. The Iraq War was a mistake.

  13. “the only guys with any credibility in the Middle East – the realpolitik players that won the First Gulf War.”

    The first gulf war was won? This is the confusion that the media loves to give, that getting rid of Hussein was a NEW war. Bulls&*t. The Gulf war was interupted to give Hussein a chance to prove he had no WMD’s . This was never accomplished . If it was , why was Hans Blix still asking for MORE time. Like Bush, he was a liar too?

    The U.N. for 12 years bastardized the oil-for-food program to enrich themselves and Hussein, all the while groups like Amnesty International bitched about the evil (maybe they said pure evil) U.S. and how we were killing 500 kids a month or day, or whatever stat they were throwing around depending on whatever lancet type study they were using.

    That’s victory?

    Setting up a (hopefully in the future) viable democracy in Iraq is already a failure?

  14. Brilliant,Guy. Like Yogi Berra said, “You wouldn’t have won if we’d beaten you.”

  15. “Also, it’s interesting that you think that getting a BJ and lying about it is pure evil.”

    My opinion is not that geeting a hummer is evil. Making Monica out to be an obsessed liar is.

  16. ‘Rev. Sharpton did not spread feces on Tawana Brawley.’

    I have no ideas who actually spread the crap. But , it was Sharpton who tried to frame some white kids for it. That is somewhat evil in my mind , if not of the ‘pure’ variety.

  17. “Setting up a (hopefully in the future) viable democracy in Iraq is already a failure?”

    Yes.

  18. throw people into wood chippers (Hussein)

    Didn’t that story turn out to be so much vapor?

  19. David,

    Nope, you’re wrong. You gotta.

  20. manpad,

    Thank you again.

    If I had a slick editor (much slicker than me) they would have written The Iraq report must have been ghost-written by wordy sports writer interns while the panel was in Georgetown knocking back martinis and Single Malt Scotch.

    I promise, I am much better with all of those defense budget numbers than I am with turning a phrase.

  21. I’m glad Jonah was here to tell us that pro-war = GOP and anti-war = democrats. Jeez. Not only is Goldberg wrong, he is slightly disingenous when he compares haiti and iraq. He’s absolutely disingenuous when he laments the “dumbed down debate” with “only two sides.” Hello, Jonah, just because you only recognize two sides doesn’t mean there wasn’t election a month ago that proves you wrong. Plenty of conservatives and Republicans voted against the GOP based on the war.

    “If we had known then what we know now, we would never have gone to war with Iraq in 2003.”

    I recall close to 100,000 people protesting war before the invasion. The truth is that (1) a lot of people knew then what you finally just got through your thick skull, and (2) those who counseled restraint didn’t care what you thought you knew, they weren’t so convinced.

    I love this whole “hindsight is 20/20” defense. Plenty of people called BS on Bush’s war. It’s supposed to be some sort of counter-argument that Hillary Clinton voted for the war? Excuse me while I shit my pants.

  22. “Setting up a (hopefully in the future) viable democracy in Iraq is already a failure?”

    Yes.

    Because you want it to be a failure (they don’t deserve it , or don’t want it argument)? Or do you really beleive we just can’t get there from here?

  23. throw people into wood chippers (Hussein)

    Didn’t that story turn out to be so much vapor?

    Excellent point , I don’t really believe anything the media says , so it could so.

    Still wouldn’t put Hussein up for sainthood though. More to the pure evil side in my mind.

  24. Didn’t that story turn out to be so much vapor?

    Nope, video available on the internet.

  25. Technically it was a plastic shredder, but close enough for government work.

  26. That’s victory?

    Compared with the current situation? Yep. We won the war and didn’t stick around to get pulled into insanity. And the Middle East paid for most of it. And our allies were happy with us.

    Setting up a (hopefully in the future) viable democracy in Iraq is already a failure?

    Put that way, Yes, again.

    “Hope” is an admirable quality but is meaningless in and of itself. As Rumsfeld ruefully put it, “Hope is not a plan.”

    “Viable democracy” is one where people aren’t killing each other in huge numbers for their beliefs. Using that measuring stick, I’d say it’s at the very least, presently unsuccessful.

    Read whatever you want into my post. It looks like you’re picking a fight over little things.

    As for me, I despise Bush, but if this leads to success in the Middle East, terrific. It ain’t gonna happen because George W keeps blowing sunshine up his own ass, however.

    It’ going to happen because someone was smart enough to face reality and use some diplomacy.

  27. Lamar,

    You have a point. I will pay more heed to the protestors in clown suits, on stilts and the ones screaming at me “Why don’t you enlist?”*

    *Why a Field Grade Reserve Officer should enlist is beyond me, but as you say, these people know things that I do not know.

  28. I love seeing the Right regurgitating its propaganda from three years ago.

    It reminds everyone of the people and beliefs responsible for this mess, and makes their yammerings that muchy less likely to work the next time they try them.

    2009: If you don’t want to invade Syria, you’re surrendering to terrorists!

    Uh, isn’t that what said about Iraq?

    Game, set, match. Keep it up, NY Post.

  29. “I will pay more heed to the protestors in clown suits, on stilts and the ones screaming at me ‘Why don’t you enlist?'”

    While you have a point (what the hell does “Meat Is Murder” have to do with anti-war?), I didn’t wear a damn clown outfit, and there were, say, only 95,000 people who were not on stilts. Just because you made an idiotic decision to support the Iraq war doesn’t make all anti-war people clowns.

  30. Those NRO bullshitters can’t keep their bullshit straight.

    Here’s the straight poop–the French opposed invading Iraq because they thought the whole “WMD” bullshit was bullshit, and becasue they thought it would become a quagmire.

    They were right, and Jonah fucking Goldberg and his cakewake monkeys at NRO were wrong, just like the Idiot-in-Chief they worshipped the whole way down the road to hell.

    Yes, the French also didn’t want to fuck with Iraq because of some corrupt oil dealings they has with Suddam. Before getting all high and mighty over this aspect, however, one might consider the relationship of the Bushes to the Saudis (you remember them–one of the three nations ACTUALLY responsible for 9/11). There is hardly room for Americans to get self-righteous about things.

  31. How they did I type “cakewake” instead of “cakewalk”?

  32. Guy, doubled,

    I appreciate your determination not to learn any lessons from the past five years and, as a Democrat, entreat you with all of my might to keep it up.

    Stay the course! You were right! It’s all Mark Foley’s fault! Bill Clinton’s penis!

    Spread the word, brothers.

  33. A lot of the tighty righties right now – especially the ones of the neocon variety – remind me of communists that complain that Communism is great, everybody just does it wrong.

  34. Lamar,

    Disagreeing with you is not idiotic, it is a disagreement.

    Also, let me add that I do enjoy the hot girl on girl action at every one of your marches when your ladies get in front of the counter protestors (we would be the one with the un-burnt American flags).

    One request, could you get more of the L-Word (on Showtime) looking gals instead of the ones that have to sue Hooters for not hiring them?

    The rampant middle finger usage is cute too. That whole “you are not my parents so I can do what I want” thing demonstrates a level of depth that I will never achieve.

    About those folks who come over to our barricade to yell at us. Ever think that *some* of us may actually be part American Indian, with long-vowel Spanish origin names, who were not ‘rich’ and, I know this might be a shock, we do not cut our own deployment orders?

    Just a thought or two. Thanks!

  35. madpad,

    You said

    So I see this as George Sr.’s way of slapping some sense into the boy by proxy for disrespecting his daddy’s judgement.

    The religious right wackos and the neocons are getting a richly deserved slap-down by the only guys with any credibility in the Middle East – the realpolitik players that won the First Gulf War.

    You mean the relpolitik players who have maintained the mideast as a human rights craphole and slaughterhouse for the past few decades?

    The same relpolitik players who along with George Sr.’s told the Iraq people to revolt against saddam. The same relpolitik players who said never mind to the people of Iraq when they revolted against saddam after gulf war one and allowed saddam slaughter them wholesale. Those are the folks you admire?

    Pure evil, but you can like it if you want.

  36. Viable democracy in Iraq? It won’t happen in any of our lifetimes. The best the Iraqi people can realistically hope for is a benevolent dictator. Maybe partition.

  37. Quite right, TJIT. The realpolitik conservatives, lets not forget, are the people who got all snuggly with the nun-killers in Central America.

    But since you neocons have managed, somehow, using some sort of advances physics learned in Area 51, to make the Middle East even more of a human rights craphole and slaughterhouse than it was under the realpolitikers, I trust you’ll be reading up on foreign policy liberalism.

    Because of your fervent rejection of ideologies that countenance widespread slaughter.

  38. The French opposed the war in Iraq for the same reason they oppose the existence of Israel…because they depend on Arab oil.

    Chirac demogogued the issue because it sure beat going to jail.

  39. I didn’t bother with the Iraq article. I was much more interested in K-Fed taking smart lessons. That’s why I read the Post.

  40. TJIT,

    …the relpolitik players who have maintained the mideast as a human rights craphole and slaughterhouse

    Uh, no. The Middle Easterners themselves have done a bang up job on that one with little help from us. I’m not defending the human rights costs of the work of the realpolitic players. But at least they were realistic enough to realize the limits of our options.

    Those are the folks you admire?

    If you interperet any of my posts as admiration for anyone, that’s completely in your imagination.

  41. Children,

    We all like to say “I told you so!”

    but

    I don’t care who started it, I just want it to stop!

  42. with little help from us.

    sorry…that should read, regardless of what we do or don’t do.

  43. Guy Montag,

    If you feel the need to point out that you don’t cut your own deployment orders, why are you counter-protesting the anti-war folks?

  44. J sub D

    We think far too much alike. Are you one of my other incarnations.

    doubled

    I doubt there is a single poster on this string – pro- or anti-invasion, who would not like to see a regime in Iraq that respected human rights.

    What there is now is a low-level civil war which is progressively getting worse. Unless you are willing to commit atrocities on a mass scale, you cannot stop it.

    The present Iraqi government is not going to survive. Continuing to attempt to do so prolongs the agony and will cost many more lives.

  45. Well said Aresen

  46. It is pretty telling that a pretty non-descript character like Goldberg is described as “evil”. On a large number of topics, Goldberg marches in lockstep with libertarians. But of course he supports the war so he is “evil”. That just how desperate and fanatical people have gotten about the war.

    Seriously, how can Weigal post this crap with a straight face? After six years of Bush is Hitler, he stole the election, America is Germany in 1933, blah blah, from the left Weigal now finds a way to get offended by some dumb cover on a tabloid rag. Give me a fucking break. Poor Jim Baker and his delicate sensibilities. Why is this worth posting on an allegedly serious magazine’s blog?

    As far as the ISG, it basically argues for staying the course. If you favor a pullout, this thing is a disaster. All it does is give the Democrats and Bush cover to continue to meander around. The only dangerous part is this idea that engaging Syria and Iran is somehow part of the solution. Baker and realist colleges assume that every nation can be counted on to behave not only in its own best interest but also in what Baker and company think are its best interest. The report basically says that since it would not be in Iran or Syria’s best interest for Iraq to fall into chaos, therefore they will be willing to deal on Iraq and be helpful if given the opportunity. That may or may not be true, but who cares? What matters is what Iran and Syria think are in their best interest not what Baker thinks. Nations miscalculate and act against their best interests all the time. Does Baker honestly believe that Syria and Iran will stop bankrolling violence in Iraq if we just take the time to explain to them how that really isn’t in their strategic best interest? The bulk of the report is either warmed over conventional wisdom or just wishful thinking.

  47. Hey, I’m late to the party… good time had last nite.

    The only thing worse than this ISG handwringingpalooza is that the toadish “tying our hands” tripe arguments that were popularized by the ‘we could have won ‘nam’ crowd are dripping out of the blogosphere like a pus oozing white head.

    It goes like this–

    “This typical leftist anti-military group, is missing the Key ingredient, VICTORY!! I respect the military, you guys are teh awesome! I wish our politians were not tying your hands with their “PC” policies..”

    Blah blah blah blah PC policies blah blah tying your hands blah blah if we just bomb the shit out of ho chi minh he’ll give up blah blah.

    Fools.

    The world would be a much simpler place if everyone just wore gray uniforms with silver eagles and aryan symbols on their helmets when riding around in tanks doing bad things. Why can’t bad guys do that, eets not faaaaiiirrr.

    The leadership of the United States had demonstrated that it is utterly incapable of performing counterinsurgency warfare, because all that we give a fuck about is big fucking bradleys, big fucking Arty and big fucking B-1s blowing the shit out of big fucking soviet tanks.

    The guy in the black pajamas in the Mekong Delta and the Sunni Triangle seem to be proving this all over again.

    I want to share something with the “victory” crowd: World War II was over 60 years ago. Move. The. Fuck. On.

    Modern low-intensity warfare involves “tying hands” because nobody can point to the average man, woman or child walking down the street in Iraq and paint them as the enemy. That’s why COIN is fucking difficult hard thankless work, and why many in the military just wish it would go away so they can concentrate on their core competencies of blowing shit up (see above).

    These are the toads I remember from all those damn victory rallies back in 03… wearing their tacky ass American Flag shirts and dressing kids up in “kick ass” shirts… oooh yeah, git some baby, git some.

    Now that they’re up the river, there’s whining about it, complaining that ‘it wasn’t supposed to be like this’. Color me unimpressed.

    Toads and people like Ledeen and Malkin talk about “victory” all day, but when pressed to define it, you get nothing more than rah rah bullshit and the ‘we should just nuke em’ all’ tripe that demonstrates the intellectual capacity of a troglodyte.

    These people don’t deserve republican democracy, frankly. People deserve the government they get, and boy, did they get it.

    Some adults get together and actually try to present some ideas – hand-wringing as they are – about what to do, and cue the sniveling. And I thought Kerry operatives were whiners, my god.

    With apologies to Col. Jessup, I would just as soon they said thank you, and good day. Either that, or pick up a weapon and stand a post. Either way, I don’t give a good goddamn about what they have to say about ‘victory.’

    V

  48. ‘The present Iraqi government is not going to survive.’

    No government survives forever, the trick is to have in place a method for peaceful transfer of power. Something that would never had happenned under Sadaam and sons.

    I agree with j sub d in that perhaps a partition is necessary. But this implies that we CAN get there from here , wherever there is(in my mind a democracy which respects human as well as minority rights).

  49. On a large number of topics, Goldberg marches in lockstep with libertarians.

    That’s a bit of a mis-characterization, there john.

    Goldberg is a conservative. Lot’s of conservatives cross paths with libertarians. So what.

    Goldberg doesn’t get a pass for taking a flawed position anymore than you or I do on this board. That’s one of the beauties of posting here instead of, say…Town Hall.

    And you’re reading an awful lot into Weigel’s post that’s just not there.

  50. “I agree with j sub d in that perhaps a partition is necessary. But this implies that we CAN get there from here , wherever there is(in my mind a democracy which respects human as well as minority rights).”

    It is a little ironic that all these people are reacting in horror to the Iraq’s ethiniclly clensing themselves by moving away from each other when that is exactly what the U.S. has been enforcing in Kosovo and Bosnia. In the Balkins all the U.S. really did was separate the two sides and stand in between them so they wouldn’t kill each other. In Kosovo, the NATO bombed out the Serbs only to allow the KLA to forcibly remove the Serb minority. Sometimes separating groups isn’t just a bad idea.

  51. “Goldberg doesn’t get a pass for taking a flawed position anymore than you or I do on this board. That’s one of the beauties of posting here instead of, say…Town Hall.”

    I don’t think he should get a pass. If people think he is full of shit, they should say so. But calling the guy evil is a bit much. Say what you want about Goldberg but he is not David Horowitz or Ann Coulter. He is a serious guy who generally would agree with a lot of what libertarians believe.

  52. V,

    What??

  53. I can agree with that, john.

  54. Iraq will descend into a bloodbath whenever the U.S. leaves. Arguably that has already happened. Leave now and watch it happen on Al Jazzera seems to be the most rational choice.

    Wait a minute! Rational, George W. Bush. Nope, does not compute.

  55. “No government survives forever,”

    But the one in place isn’t going to survive 3 months.

    “the trick is to have in place a method for peaceful transfer of power. Something that would never had happenned under Sadaam and sons.”

    Right. There would likely have been a civil war. Only there wouldn’t be US, British and a few other countries’ troops caught in the middle.

  56. John,

    Mr. Weigel (please use this mnemonic when you’re typing his name, “David Weigel is not a gal”) did not characterize Jonah Goldberg as pure evil. It was Warren (third comment).

  57. Aresen, I wish I could share your optimism on the likelyhood of a civil anyway under Sadaam. The Kurds had 12 years to try and do so , didn’t, the Shiites had 12 years and couldn’t. Sadaam had shown that he would put down an uprising of his own countrymen with gas (WMD by the way). Why do you assume that the agrieved groups would have had the gumption or materials to wage a civil war agianst such a police state( the real kind , not the U.S. in the minds of so many leftists).

  58. DeStijl

    I know it wasn’t Weigel that did it. Sorry to imply it was. I meant more generally the posters on here, i.e. Warren.

  59. doubled

    I assumed you were talking about any transition from the Baathist regime, not about the actual toppling of it.

    How long would the Baathists have lasted? No idea. 30 years ago, I projected that the Soviet Union was going to last another 100 years, decaying slowly the way Spain did in the 17th and 18th centuries.

    Projecting that the present Iraqi government is not going to survive the departure of US & British troops is like projecting the survival of an uncooked egg dropped from a third-floor window.

  60. John,

    I’m pretty sure that Warren was employing just a smattering of hyperbole.

    Warren was also wrong in calling Goldberg “pure evil.” The preferred moniker is “doughy pantload.”

  61. his own countrymen with gas (WMD by the way).

    in 1988…well beforethe current situation.

    Nobody debated him obtaining WMDs…we knew exactly how much he had gotten (from us). What was debated was whether he still had them.

    He apparently didn’t.

  62. Madpad said: What was debated was whether he still had them.

    He apparently didn’t.

    Exactally , the U.N. either knew this and continued with sanctions anyway, or didn’t believe this which means Bush doesn’t deserve the liar lable. Take your pick.

  63. Aresen

    I assumed you were talking about any transition from the Baathist regime, not about the actual toppling of it.

    But there is the rub, Sadaam would never permitted a transition. Like Cook county politicians in Illinois, he was working on creating his own nepotistic kingdom.

  64. doubled

    Granted.

    However, your words were “.. have in place a method for peaceful transfer of power”

    Please explain how what has happened was ‘peaceful’.

    Politics, as the saying goes, is ‘the art of the possible.’ What was/is being attempted in Iraq is not possible. [Or at least, so unlikely that it makes betting the mortgage payment on drawing three to fill an inside straight look like a good bet.]

  65. First of all Goldberg did not popularize the phrase. Second, though Jonah has some libertarian views, he has also called libertarianism “a form of arrogant nihilism”. Just because someone shares some views with libertarians doesn’t mean what they say in general is valueable. There are tons of far left loonies that agree with libertarians on the War on Drugs, gay marriage and non-agression. Does it mean that everything they say is valuable or should be taken seriously?

  66. However, your words were “.. have in place a method for peaceful transfer of power”

    I was not explaining what happened in Iraq then or now. I was alluding to creating a country where there is peaceful transfer of power, like the U.S., or Japan or Germany (might have been hard to predict that for those last two in say 1942).

    I’m not ready to write off the arabs as incapable of self government just yet.

  67. “The difference is that Pilate just wanted to wash his hands of an annoyance, while [James] Baker would wash his hands in the blood of our troops.”

    Yep, classic rightwing moonbattery at work.

    Please tell m that Jacob Sullumn writing for Town Hall, and Reason people debating Goldberg seriously is some sort of sick joke?

  68. “Say what you want about Goldberg but he is not David Horowitz or Ann Coulter. He is a serious guy who generally would agree with a lot of what libertarians believe.”

    Riiiiiight. A serious guy who writes books like “Liberal Fascism: The Totalitarian Temptation from Mussolini to Hillary Clinton”

    It’s pretty amusing to hear someone get all riled up about calling Jonah “pure evil” as a matter of false equivalence, given that this is pretty much Jonah’s MO, along with some of the dumbest and most poorly formed arguments short of K-Lo’s incoherent postings.

  69. joe,

    You said

    Quite right, TJIT. The realpolitik conservatives, lets not forget, are the people who got all snuggly with the nun-killers in Central America.

    So are you saying that realpolitik in central america is bad, but realpolitiks in the middle east is good? I would say that history would show the track record of realpolitik giving long term good results is not that good.

    But since you neocons

    A neocon is a big government conservative and that is not me.

    have managed, somehow, using some sort of advances physics learned in Area 51, to make the Middle East even more of a human rights craphole and slaughterhouse than it was under the realpolitikers

    saddam started the Iran Iraq war. Poke around the web and you will get Casualty estimates that range from 500,000 to 1 million dead, 1-2 million wounded, and more than 80,000 prisoners. Then after that slaughter saddam decided to invade Kuwait. I think a reasonable person could argue by removing saddam from power the second gulf war prevented far more deaths then it caused

    I trust you’ll be reading up on foreign policy liberalism.

    What would you recomend I read up on, FDR’s firebombing of Dresden or Truman’s nuking of two cities in Japan?

    Because of your fervent rejection of ideologies that countenance widespread slaughter.

    Well truman and FDR both caused a lot of slaughter, should their policies also be rejected?

  70. Now, I have learned some lessons from the clown suited lesbians on stilts.

    If we pull out of Iraq it will become just like the paradise we know as Vietnam. Not sure if the Iraqis will get into pleasure boating as much as the Vietnamese did, but it will be yet another Socialist paradise none the less.

    A more detailed version of the Vietnam thing is here.

  71. andy,

    Because the “anti-war” folks keep asking us why we are not in Iraq right now. Granted, stupid questions like that should just be ignored, but I did give the answer here.

    Let’s see, why would I possibly want to be counter-protesting the troop hating surrender monkeys? Well, just possibly because I disagree with them enough to get out on the street and let them know it.

  72. Guy Montag:

    What exactly to you hope we gain by continuing to fight in Iraq?

    If the anti-war right (let’s face it, they are the only anti-war people that matter) says we can’t win and it’s no use killing more American troops, how does that equal “troop hating”? Is there something hateful about trying to keep Americans alive?

    And surely you remember that the Commander-in-Chief declared “mission accomplished”? Why is it called “surrender” if we accomplished our mission?

  73. TJIT,

    I am not saying that realpolitik in the Middle East, or anywhere else, is good. I was explicitly denouncing the realpolitik solution as only marginally less repugnant than the neocon solution.

    “A neocon is a big government conservative and that is not me.”

    On foreign policy, you supported this war, and the “regional transformation” theory behind it. On foreign policy, you are a big-government conservative.

    All of the horrors you call out to denouce Saddam took place over a decade ago. For the decade before our latest invasion of Iraq, he was utterly incapable of committin anything like the acts you describe. Our alteration of that status quo, to the current one, has dramatically increased the carnage in Iraq. If this was bizarro-1993, and we were arguing whether George HW Bush’s toppling of Saddam, and a subsequent insurgency/civil war/terrorist campaign was worse than the status quo ante, you might have a point. But it isn’t, and you don’t.

    “What would you recomend I read up on, FDR’s firebombing of Dresden or Truman’s nuking of two cities in Japan?”

    Since the possibility of our having to defeat a two superpower militaries simultaneously is fairly remote, while diffusing longstanding grudges between sects; waging low-level war against shadowy resistance groups using mainly intel and small-scale military operations; supporting indigeneous democratic resistance movements in hostile dictatorships; and establishing stable, decent regimes in failed states are the biggest tasks we’re facing, I’d recommend you read about the Camp David Accords, the Northern Ireland Peace Process, the intervention in the Balkans, the CIA-run phase of the Afghan War, and the Truman/Kennan containment strategy.

  74. “If we pull out of Iraq it will become just like the paradise we know as Vietnam.”

    If we do as you propose, and wait around until we are flying helicopters off the embassy roof, it probably will.

    That’s a big reason why it’s not a good idea to do as you propose.

    And thanks for keeping up the “surrender monkey” language, even in the face of the harsh realities everyone else in the country has faced. Your determination to stay the course is a key ingredient of the Democratic realignment we’re seeing.

    No surrender, Guy! No surrender!

  75. The Kurds had 12 years to try and do so , didn’t, the Shiites had 12 years and couldn’t. Sadaam had shown that he would put down an uprising of his own countrymen with gas (WMD by the way)

    Helicopters, actually. The gas was used years before. We actually promised them that we’d help them deal with those copters, which was why they came out of their hiding places in the first place. When we didn’t show up, they got cut down, and the prospects of a homegrown rebellion were crushed. Good for us; we really wanted to keep Saddam there, so removing any sources of instability was a good deal. Well, or so we thought…

    Why do you assume that the agrieved groups would have had the gumption or materials to wage a civil war agianst such a police state( the real kind , not the U.S. in the minds of so many leftists).

    They didn’t at that point, which was why they were keeping their heads down and waiting for their chance. When we told them we’d support them, they assumed that the chance had come. Stupid them, they believed us.

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.