Tuesday, November 28, 2006
The Conner watch begins
Today's Conner Watch is brought to us courtesy of a couple of conservative readers of The Corner who are trying to lift the sagging spirits of long time contributor Jonah Goldberg. It seems that these koolaid drinkers are convinced that going into Iraq was the right thing to do in spite of the overwhelming and inconrtovertable evidence that indicates otherwise. For example the first letter writer says:
The Iraq war was not a mistake. It is easy to forget in the spectacle of watching the Iraqis butcher each other trying to build a stable government, but much was accomplished with this war:The writer establishes his credentials as a koolaid drinking wingnut of the first order directly off the bat by asserting that the Iraq war was not a mistake. Despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary, the writer intends to prove that everybody in the entire world except for his little band of idealogical brethren has it wrong! This should be instructive, and a bit fun as well.
1. The toppling of a regime that was a constant threat to its neighbors and, potentially at least, to us.I would say that the threat posed by Saddam to his neighbors was very effectually neutralized with the 1st Gulf War. The strategy of containment following that war worked extremely well and there was no prospect of Iraq destabilizing or invading it's neighbors until we disrupted the natural state of affairs by occupying them. As for the potential danger represented by Saddam to America, that assertion can be shouted about any nation on the Globe. Venezuela represents a potential threat. As does Ethiopia, Mexico and Romania! Potential means "possible as opposed to actual" as defined by the dictionary. The true test on this question regarding who we ought to invade must be reached by proving the case that any given country actually did or does pose a threat in reality. It is already conclusively proven that Saddam did not pose that threat.
2. Removing the Iraqi threat allowed us to move our troops out of Saudi Arabia. The US presence in the Kingdom was the #1 motivator for Bin Ladenism, and the long term benefits this will have after Iraq are hard to calculate but will no doubt be significant.How is a sane person supposed to consider this logic and not simply throw up his/her hands in frustration and walk away. Our invasion of Iraq removes the #1 motivator of Bin Ladenism? That is truly mind boggling. Thats like claiming that pouring gasoline on a grass fire removes the primary ignition source that caused the original fire... The ranks of Al Qaeda have exploded (seriously, no pun here) in numbers, their influence in Iraq (which was NIL under Saddam) has burgeoned and we are handing them a victory on a silver platter. Invading Iraq to combat Bin Ladenism?! How can you fathom that logic? After you recover from that giggle fit you must be mid way through let us move onto the next point.
3. Worst possible case scenario, we retreat to Kurdistan. No matter what happens in Greater Iraq, the liberation of the Kurds and the implantation of a nascent democracy there is a genuine success.Hmmm... worst case scenario? Try this on for size! Turkey goes ballistic with the notion of Free Republic of Kurdistan sitting on it's southern border, and allies with Iran who has their own issues with Kurdistan. Iran under this worst case scenario already has Southern Iraq as a frontier colony and these Iraqi Shiites are not going to let Kirkuk just slide into Kurdish rule without a struggle. Worst case scenario? Us propping up a stable Free Kurdistan is actually a very positive scenario... we would be lucky to have the writers worst case scenario come to fruitiion.
4. Also in the worst case scenario, we retreat not only to Kurdistan, but also to Kuwait. The virtual military encirclement of Iran will remain, and that is important. An encircled Iran, even with a nuke, is a far different scenario than the opposite.So now the writer, having already incorrectly asserted that Iraq was a threat, and the war in Iraq helps in the fight against Bin Ladenism, asserts that the final outcome of the worst case scenario in Iraq is an isolated Iran. Again, one must wonder what the heck this writer was smoking when he uses this logic. We have taken out one of Irans biggest enemies and freed millions of their religious brethren in arms in southern Iraq. How this weakens or isolates Iran is really a mystery as far as I'm concerned.
Iraq is not Vietnam redux, it is more like Korea: a defective outcome, but one that can be made into lemonade if we just keep our wits about us.
I would love to take off on the other letter in this post, but I've already gone on for an excessive amount of wordage... So check in tomorrow for the next installment of The Conner Watch!
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