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    From the US Army, Strategic S..., 2003-01-31 00:00:00 | Main | In trying to understand the U..., 2003-02-05 00:00:00

    On pondering conversations with folks from the pro-war left, and skimming Matthew Hogan's line-up of pro-war arguments not made of pure bullshit I have to say about the only argument that I find even worth considering is the "liberation of a people" line, and if I thought that was what we were doing I would, given international support, quite likely be moderately supportive.

    The problem is that, even when we supposedly try, we apparently now stink at liberating other people (we have three successes that I'm aware of: ourselves and two world wars). With Karzai effectively a pauper begging an unresponsive Washington for aid it's odd to hear Bush describe the situation during the SOTU as: "In Afghanistan, we helped to liberate an oppressed people, and we will continue helping them secure their country, rebuild their society and educate all their children, boys and girls."

    If this is his idea of "liberation" then what should we expect for the people of Iraq? I was moderately opposed to the Afghanistan campaign to begin with, on the grounds of my own mistrust of the administration, the frightening appearance of the humanitarian crisis, the apparent sabotage of diplomatic efforts to acquire the expulsion of Bin Laden peacefully, and the total lack of an effort to address the roots of the problem with no honest accounting of recent history. Quite enough to piss me off indefinitely. It was a war of impatience more than anything else.

    The one hope I had was that we would truly contribute to the political and social liberation of a people from their masters (hope for economic liberation, given my politics, is an obvious impossibility given the nature of the "liberators", but one can dream). We haven't, and I would far prefer, and would support, greater efforts to engage Afghanistan and Pakistan. When talking about "reforming Islam" why don't we finish what we already started before leaping off to another militant foray? If either WMD or economic interests, to hit both sides on the head, are what we're really after what interest will there really be in solidfying a democratic revolution in Iraq?

    I haven't attended any anti-war protests yet, and I'd much rather attend protests for Afghanistan (but hey, if we can drag Mumia into it I suppose its a pretty open field for second issues, I'll have to paint up an AFGHANISTAN FIRST! sign or two).

    Then I look to Iran, and wonder if the Muslim world really needs an oppressor-come-liberator to go bombing through, bestriding the colored hordes with a saddle and a big stick. Maybe we just need to remove the sadddle.


:: posted by buermann @ 2003-02-01 00:00:00 CST | link





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