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October 12, 2007

How Much Is Petty Political Vindication Worth To The Left?

I'd been meaning to note this for a while, but I was prompted by a comment to finally do so.

Patrick H wrote:

If before the war began the Pentagon and the President had known that it would cost less than 4,500 US lives to win the war and secure he peace, I think it's likely they would have still chosen to go to war. It's legitimate to argue that Iraq isn't worth a single US death, but as far as wars go this one has cost very few American lives considering the size of the task.

I don't know if I'd've been so sanguine; my guess was 2500 lives, a number we blew past a long time ago, and based on the assumption that Saddam had WMDs, which he did not. Which I think we have to take as a fact, pretty much, at this point, barring some major revelation that I wouldn't count on. Did he want WMDs? Yes. Did the program continue to exist in the "wills" of his scientists, as they said (i.e., they could reconstitute the program the moment sanctions were off, and intended to do so)? Yes.

And yet, it was true -- not that we knew this, or could know it -- that Saddam's WMD program was in fact more or less "contained" under the previous sanctions regime.

His support of terrorists...? Not so much, but the connections there are still not entirely proven. Though there is plenty of suggestive information about it.

We have to win now, but I don't know that knowing what i know now I would have supported this. One bad effect, among many others, is our skittishness in dealing with Iran, remember. We'd hoped this would serve notice to Iran; but as th war has worn on, it has been taken as green light by Iran, as we just don't have the manpower to take on another major war at the moment.

This is one of my sources of frustration with the left: They have gotten as much political credit as is necessary over this. I think most Americans would not have supported the war if they knew what they know now, and that helps the liberals.

So even if the US wins the war, the liberals still win, mostly, and the Republicans are still seen as not nearly infallible on these issues. So politically, whatever happens, the left wins, we lose.

But that's enough for them. Even having substantially won this argument in the minds of the public, they demand nothing short of full and complete US defeat and a wildly unstable middle east, just to get their full measure of political vindication.

Seems to be trading an awful lot for a couple extra senate seats, doesn't it?

But it's always about abortion, and abortion is more important than whether the US emerges from this with a much stronger strategic position or a disastrously weaker one. Gotta get those senators, gotta keep abortion, even if the world should burn for that.

The left has won all it can win, through natural effects alone, from the prolonged war in Iraq. But they seem to want more than what natural, inevitable effects would engender; they seem hell-bent on forcing a full defeat, just to boost their foreign-policy ratings by a marginal amount, and subtract from the GOP's foreign-policy ratings by an equally marginal amount.

I have difficulty crediting these bastards as "True Patriots" when they seem determined to lose an extraordinarily important war when it could be won simply so they can say "I told you so."


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posted by Ace at 05:16 PM

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