Friday, February 03, 2006


Is this the best that the war party can do after three years of war in Iraq? Being, R. Emmett Tyrrell of the American Spectator it probably isn't. The current Tyrrellian justification for the Iraq Quagmire is that:

America had suffered 3,000 casualties at home, not one of whom had been engaged in warfare against anyone. The tyrant we took down had taunted us, boasted of his danger to us and hosted terrorists in his capital. There was no debate about this. The United States had attacked a modern-day Hitler who was not as clever as the original and was encouraging enemies of our country. The brute Saddam was actually sending rewards to the families of terrorists.

What kind of zanies would join a peace movement against this military effort to do about what Franklin Roosevelt and Winston Churchill did in the early 1940s?
President Roosevelt did what he did despite the Neutrality Acts against military assistance to foreign powers, even foreign powers defending themselves against the Nazis. Very boldly Roosevelt broke the law, and he did so repeatedly.

Ignore for a moment the casual way that Tyrrell conflates the actions of Bush and Blair with those of Churchill and Roosevelt who, no matter what criticisms one might make of them, were fighting against the real Axis. You know, the one that had invaded Poland, bombed London and attacked Pearl Harbor. Missing from Tyrrell's bill of particulars against Saddam is any claim that he attacked and murdered the three thousand Americans that he refers to in the first sentence.

The whole point of this most recent after-the-fact justification for the disasterous Iraq invasion -- I seem to remember a lot of loose talk about "mushroom clouds" before -- is to give Tyrrell a chance to fling poo upon Cindy Sheehan. Now, I don't particulary care for Sheehan. I feel for the loss of her son, but her contribution to the public debate is to make it easier for nitwits like Tyrrell to avoid addressing the arguements of people such as Andrew Bacevich, who manages to make devastating criticisms of the Iraq invasion without cuddling with the thuggish Hugo Chavez.

P.S. Since this is about Emmett Tyrrell, who idolizes the late H.L. Mencken; feel free the to insert the following Menckenisms into the text at random the way that Tyrrell often does: Piffle! Mountebank!, Poltroon!, etc.

1 comment:

Imperator said...

You mention that Roosevelt and Churchill were fighting the 'real Axis' but if I recall from my history studies, only one of the three actually attacked us. If we want to get into details and talk about 'imminent threats' Germany and Italy were hardly threats to the US. Germany couldn't hardly invade Britain, much less the US. Italy could barely conquer Ethiopia.

Then again, Japan, the Axis power that actually attacked us, was relegated to a secondary status where the main effort was to defeating Germany. I wonder if anyone was asking FDR why we were concentrating on Hitler instead of Tojo?

The one question I always ask is whether or not Iraq would have been better off with Saddam? In the wake of the insurgency which is primarily Iraqi Batthists it would seem yes. That said, that would then be admitting that it is better to have a nation live under a brutal dictatorship because it can keep order rather than give the people a chance for freedom and defeat the ones who want to turn back the clock.