Irish doctor with too many thoughts, too little time and a blog that's supposed to check in on reality.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

I really don't want to get into the war but.....

I don't want to get into one of those massive war discussions - while being neither a neo-con trigger happy warmonger nor a Bush apologist I had/have no problem with the Iraq war. At this stage I need several double vodkas to entertain an earnest anti-war friend trying to convince me I'm wrong (and I don't really drink at all). Maybe I'm too proud admit I'm wrong but I'm still underwhelmed by the arguments.
Recent events (Harold Pinter and Cindy Sheehan on tour in Dublin) brought to mind this article by Victor Hanson I read a few weeks ago.
We took no oil - the price in fact skyrocketed after we invaded Iraq. We did not do Israel's bidding; in fact, it left Gaza after we went into Iraq and elections followed on the West Bank. We did not want perpetual hegemony - in fact, we got out of Saudi Arabia, used the minimum amount of troops possible, and will leave Iraq anytime its consensual government so decrees. And we did not expropriate Arab resources, but, in fact, poured billions of dollars into Iraq to jumpstart its new consensual government in the greatest foreign aid infusion of the age.
In short, every day the American people should have been reminded of, and congratulated on, their country's singular idealism, its tireless effort to reject the cynical realism of the past, and its near lone effort to make terrible sacrifices to offer the dispossessed Shia and Kurds something better than the exploitation and near genocide of the past - and how all that alone will enhance the long-term security of the United States.
That goal was what the U.S. military ended up so brilliantly fighting for - and what the American public rarely heard. The moral onus should have always been on the critics of the war. They should have been forced to explain why it was wrong to remove a fascist mass murderer, why it was wrong to stay rather than letting the country sink into Lebanon-like chaos, and why it was wrong not to abandon brave women, Kurds, and Shia who only wished for the chance of freedom.

It's probably mean just to leave this comment hanging here, but a friend described Pinter as "the Ian Paisley of the anti-war movement, but without the elegance". Reading his speech does kinda concur with that assessment, as dismissive as it is!


Blogger Fence said...

I'm anti-war. Gut reaction, and I don't think it is going to change anytime soon.

But if I was asked if I think the best thing for Iraq is a pull-out of foreign troops, then at the moment I'd have to say no.

The US and allies are in a no win situation. While they stay they are getting killed and fostering more hatred, so earning condemnation. If they pulled out then they would be leaving the regular Iraqis in the power of various fundamental terrorists. And no doubt the results would deserve to be condemned.

That's why I'm anti-war. It wasn't thought out properly.

December 14, 2005 9:30 a.m.  
Blogger Dealga said...

I'm generally pro western military intervention in failing states - like in Iraq (making a mess of it), like in Rwanda (should have happened), like in Somalia (didn't work), like in Bosnia (better late than never) and like in East Timor (seems to be working). The pity is that the Americans ballsed up the justification (told lies because the American people wouldn't have supported it otherwise), ballsed up the planning (thought it would be a peace of piss) and are ballsing up the execution. So, from their point of view, the only sympathy I have is for the kids they've put in harms way.

Like the new layout. Very kitschy. Looks like my Gran's early seventies sitting room!

December 15, 2005 10:40 p.m.  

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