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8/21/2005
BAINBRIDGE: A THOUGHTFUL BUT FLAWED CRITIQUE OF THE WAR
CATEGORY: War on Terror

The summer seems to have turned into a season of discontent for conservatives. As the President’s popularity plummets and support for the War in Iraq wavers, Administration policies that perhaps should have been questioned long ago but for the intervention of politics and the November election have come under attack. It’s hard to recall at this point the absolute necessity in supporting the President when the choice was between Bush and the conspiracists, fantasist’s, and simpering internationalists who wished to subsume American interests to the execrable anti-Americans at the United Nations

Far from being the monolithic entity we are accused of by our critics on the left, the center-right Shadow Media has been roiled in recent months by several high energy, high profile issues, revealing cracks and splits between religious conservatives, secular conservatives, neo-conservatives, and libertarians. The Terri Schiavo imbroglio was instructive in this regard in that it exacerbated tensions that already existed between the religious conservatives and libertarians while revealing the true fault lines in the conservative movement that exist between rationalists and theists.

But where these fault lines seemed to knit together and ultimately unite conservatives was at the water’s edge. Schiavo, intelligent design, the courts - all the issues that divided us were put aside once the debate turned to the War on Terror. The overarching need to support the President as Commander in Chief and our troops in the field against the hard left whose policy prescriptions would eventually lead, I believe, to an unthinkable terrorist attack on the homeland outweighed any quibbles we may have had with the Administration’s tactical and strategic thinking.

Sadly, this has now changed.

This was, perhaps inevitable. The rumbling on the right regarding the President’s less than conservative governance is nothing new and have recently exploded into full throated howls of protest about the President’s budgetary policies and social activism. And now, several high profile, influential conservatives have begun to desert the President on Iraq.

Greg Djerejian has recently written several scathing critiques of war policy both from a military and political standpoint. He’s called for the resignation of Defense Secretary Rumsfeld and additional troops on the ground in Iraq in order to give the nascent Iraqi government a chance to succeed in a more secure environment.

John Cole and others (myself included) have broken with the Administration on their detention policies, believing them to be inhumane and political disastrous. And now one of the right’s more thoughtful and respected bloggers has pretty much come out and said the Iraq war is a failure and we need an exit strategy.

Professor Stephen Bainbridge doesn’t pull any punches in this critique of both the President’s policies and his leadership. The first shot across the bow is a doozy:

It’s time for us conservatives to face facts. George W. Bush has pissed away the conservative moment by pursuing a war of choice via policies that border on the criminally incompetent. We control the White House, the Senate, the House of Representatives, and (more-or-less) the judiciary for one of the few times in my nearly 5 decades, but what have we really accomplished? Is government smaller? Have we hacked away at the nanny state? Are the unborn any more protected? Have we really set the stage for a durable conservative majority?

Meanwhile, Bush continues to insult our intelligence…

The good professor then lists the left’s talking points on Iraq and apparently adopts them whole hog:

After all, if Iraq’s alleged WMD programs were the casus belli, why aren’t we at war with Iran and North Korea? Not to mention Pakistan, which remains the odds-on favorite to supply the Islamofascists with a working nuke. If Saddam’s cruelty to his own people was the casus belli, why aren’t we taking out Kim Jong Il or any number of other nasty dictators? Indeed, what happened to the W of 2000, who correctly proclaimed nation building a failed cause and an inappropriate use of American military might? And why are we apparently going to allow the Islamists to write a more significant role for Islamic law into the new Iraqi constitution? If throwing a scare into the Saudis was the policy, so as to get them to rethink their deals with the jihadists, which has always struck me as the best rationale for the war, have things really improved on that front?

The trouble with Bush’s justification for the war is that it uses American troops as fly paper. Send US troops over to Iraq, where they’ll attract all the terrorists, who otherwise would have come here, and whom we’ll then kill. This theory has proven fallacious. The first problem is that the American people are unwilling to let their soldiers be used as fly paper.

First, as for WMD in Iran and North Korea, the professor’s question as to why we’re not at war with them will be answered soon enough. The mad mullahs in Tehran seem hell bent for leather on enriching enough uranium to build nuclear weapons. The fact that the Iranian theocracy has based it’s entire existence on the destruction of Israel has not gone unnoticed in Tel Aviv. I daresay it will become more and more difficult to restrain the IDF the closer Iran gets to realizing its nuclear ambitions. It should go without saying that any military action taken by Israel will by necessity embroil the United States in whatever crisis ensues. I would think that we’ll have more than enough war for anyone’s taste if that occurs.

As for Kim, he has impoverished his country to build a weapon that he can’t possibly use. North Korea’s improving trade relations with China as well as their dependence on Bejing’s food shipments may give enough leverage to the six party talks to pry those weapons from his hands. It’s still possible Kim will lash out at his neighbor to the south. But that eventuality is fading as both Russia and China - Kim’s major trading partners - follow the lead of the United States as we seek to make the Korean peninsula a nuclear free zone.

As for the justifications for war, Bainbridge uses the same narrow interpretation - the WMD argument - to take the Administration to task for changing the rationale for war as the left. In fact, UN Security Council Resolution 1441 lists a hosts of justifications for the invasion. The fact that some of our erstwhile allies whose assistance would have been appreciated and was much needed at the time were apparently bought off by Saddam’s oil for food bribery is not mentioned by the professor. Nor his well documented ties to terrorists, including Osama Bin Laden. Nor does the professor once mention 9/11 whose shadow will color American policy for the forseeable future.

On the subject of OBL, the professor channels John Kerry:

While we remain bogged down in Iraq, of course, Osama bin Laden remains at large somewhere. Multi-tasking is all the rage these days, but whatever happened to finishing a job you started? It strikes me that catching Osama would have done a lot more to discourage the jihadists than anything we’ve done in Iraq.

C’mon professor! We just lost 19 brave men in the mountains of Afghanistan who by most reports, were following up on a solid lead as to Bin Laden’s whereabouts. What would you want us to do? Send a couple of divisions into the mountains to tramp about aimlessly in some of the most forbidding terrain on the planet? Wherever Osama is hiding, he’s hardly inspiring anyone at this point. Consequently, his capture would not “discourage” the jihadists. And his death may in fact make him a martyr. Besides, he may very well be in an area where sending large bodies of troops would be politically impractical. General Musharaf of Pakistan has enough problems with restless provinces without allowing several thousand Americans to upset the delicate control he’s trying to maintain.

I will say that the professor’s take on the so-called “flypaper strategy” is spot on:

The second problem is that the fly paper strategy seems to be radicalizing our foes even more. For every fly that gets caught, it seems as though 10 more spring up. This should hardly come as a surprise to anybody who has watched Israel pursue military solutions to its terrorist problems, after all. Does anybody really think Israel’s military actions have left Hezbollah or Hamas with fewer foot soldiers? To the contrary, the London bombing suggests to me that it is only a matter of time before the jihadists strike in the US again, even though our troops remain hung out as fly paper in the Augean Stables of Iraq.

I agree that the fly-paper motif, while politically useful, has become a silly rationale for the reconstruction of Iraq. But this critique makes no sense:

Conversely, the latest news about that rocket attack on a US Navy ship in Jordan seems to confirm my concerns: “The Abdullah Azzam Brigades — an al-Qaida-linked group that claimed responsibility for the bombings which killed at least 64 people at Sharm el-Sheik in July and 34 people at two other Egyptian resorts last October — said in an Internet statement that its fighters had fired the Katyushas, bolstering concerns that Islamic extremists had opened a new front in the region.” Indeed, the NYT reports that: “The possible involvement of Iraqis and the military-style attack have raised fears that militants linked to Iraq’s insurgency may be operating on Jordanian soil.”

The very nature of our decision to take out Iraq presupposed an expansion of the war with jihadists. This was a given from the very start. We had a choice; we could have sat home and hoped against hope that radical Islamists would leave us alone or we could take the war to them and flush them out. Not flies to flypaper, professor but smoke to cockroaches. The expansion you speak of is the inevitable by-product of our success, however limited so far, in Iraq. Besides, the Islamist’s goal of destabilizing Arab regimes predates our involvement in Iraq. They hardly needed to be radicalized in that regard.

Finally, Bainbridge posits a bleak future for Republicans:

What really annoys me, however, are the domestic implications of all this. The conservative agenda has advanced hardly at all since the Iraq War began. Worse yet, the growing unpopularity of the war threatens to undo all the electoral gains we conservatives have achieved in this decade. Stalwarts like me are not going to vote for Birkenstock wearers no matter how bad things get in Iraq, but what about the proverbial soccer moms? Gerrymandering probably will save the House for us at least through the 2010 redistricting, but what about the Senate and the White House?

In sum, I am not a happy camper. I’m very afraid that 100 years from now historians will look back at W’s term and ask “what might have been?”

I’m happy to hear that the professor will refrain from totally abandoning the Republican party for the sandal wearers and incense burners of the left. That said, his analysis does not take into account that 2006 is still a long way off and 2008 may as well be in another quadrant of the universe. Unless something untoward happens to radicalize those soccer moms, demographics alone are trending so much the Republican’s way that it would take a seismic shift in the electorate for the kind of disaster predicted by the professor.

There is good sense to be found in the professor’s words. I’ve been writing for months that the President has taken a back seat on the war and it’s time for him to get out in front and lead again. The sporadic way in which Bush has gone about defending his policies has been his single greatest failing. And as many of us - including Professor Bainbridge - have been saying for months, it’s time to inject a dash of realism into the Administration’s war talk and start telling the American people exactly what the stakes are if we fail. The cost of defeat in Iraq is too horrible to contemplate. And while the professor’s critique does make some good points about the increasing sectarian nature of the Iraqi government, I believe we’re soon going to discover if some kind of liberal democratic system is compatible with Islamic law.

If as I suspect, it is, then the blood and treasure expended by the United States in Iraq will not be seen 100 years from now as a might have been but rather as the cheapest and most efficacious way to win the War on Terror.

By: Rick Moran at 8:10 am
29 Responses to “BAINBRIDGE: A THOUGHTFUL BUT FLAWED CRITIQUE OF THE WAR”
  1. 1
    Marv Loopstra Said:
    9:57 am 

    I am not in the league of thinkers that usually post comments here but something seems to be missing here in the “flypaper” argument. Feel free to tell me where I am going wrong here.

    It is my opinion that the Bush administration thought this out more than they are given credit for. Mistakes, sure they have made them. But not in the initial planning. This is why:

    It is immediatly appearant that you can’t fight this enemy without a battleground. Options: Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran.

    Our biggest problem is Iran. So why aren’t we in Iran? Look at a map. By taking care of Afghanastan and Iraq first we have surrounded Iran.

    Granted, Iraq is not going as well as hoped or expected, but it is crucial.

    Listen, I don’t care what reasons are given for going into Iraq. He is CIC and has a war to run. He knows way more about it than I, has the intellegence to back it up and I see no reason to second guess.

    There are many things he cannot say because of international and domestic politics, political correctness, security, strategy etc. and there is probably a bit of disinformation involved as well.

    Am I entirely happy with the way things are going? No. I would like a much more “aggressive” approach.
    Do I abandon him because of it? NO.

  2. 2
    Rick Moran Said:
    10:05 am 

    I would say that your comment places you in league with the best who write here.

    That said, I don’t think Bainbridge is abandoning the President. Nor am I for that matter. But the way things are going now (not so much with the insurgency but more with the political situation) Iraq could degenerate into all out civil war that would destroy the government and put us back to square one.

    Worse, Iraq could become a Shia theocracy like its next door neighbor. Either way, we lose.

    As for being more agressive, that’s just not in the cards. We’ve hitched our wagon to Iraqi defense forces and are presently paying the price for shortsightedness in disbanding the Iraqi military in the immediate aftermath of the war. That said, there are some who are calling for more troops. This may be the only way to really pacify Iraq enough so that the new government gets a head start in gaining legitimacy.

  3. 3
    AcademicElephant Said:
    1:08 pm 

    If we are indeed pursuing the Bush Doctrine, which I interpret as the encouragement of global democracy, in Iraq this is a long term process and we cannot completely ensure agaist either civil war or a Shia theocracy without destroying the very freedom we are trying to create. The fundamental question is if it is better not to attempt this risky experiment, which comes with inevitable setbacks and mistakes (the only sure things being death and taxes, and we and the Iraqis certainly have these). I would argue it is our best, possibly our only, chance at achieving a secure future, and that more good than harm has been done so far, but clearly Bainbridge is starting to have his doubts. Well, he’s entitled to them, but the policy is developing and being more consistently applied, and I wouldn’t want to be on his side of history 100 years hence.

  4. 4
    Bill Egbert Said:
    5:45 pm 

    The flawed execution of the Iraq invasion has gutted our volunteer army to the point that we couldn’t sustain military action against Iran if we had to, much less respond to a crisis in N.Korea of Latin America. The failure to secure Saddam’s explosive depots armed our enemies, and corruption in the reconstruction has turned the population against our troops.

    Allowing N.Korea to amass enough fissile material for several nukes while getting bogged down in Iraq was the biggest strategic mistake since Rumsfeld refused to send enough troops to Iraq and (and sent the few he did deploy into battle without proper armor of combat vehicles). To say that Kim is less of a threat because his economy has collapsed is ridiculous. His poverty makes it EVEN MORE likely to sell a nuke to a Saudi-funded terrorist group (remember how he funded his regime through the 1990s by selling missles and nuke-tech to Pakistan?).

    Bush is losing the war in Iraq by running it based on domestic political priorities rather than the military facts on the ground. It’s more important to this Administration to act like it’s winning the war than to actually do what’s necessary to win it. His political strategy of insulating the American people from the realities of the war is not backfiring bigtime, because the only way to win now is to bring some hard realities out in the open.

    The worst way that the all-powerful White House political team is preventing success in Iraq is by staking Bush’s credibility as a leader on “staying the course” when that course is undeniably leading to disaster. They’ve painted Bush into an impossible corner in which any change in strategy will be seen as a retreat. He’s going to have to find a way to correct our course if he’s going to keep asking the American people to stay with it.

  5. 5
    Raising Kaine » Conservatives Start Bailing on Iraq…and Bush Pinged With:
    6:04 pm 

    [...] ack at W’s term and ask “what might have been?” Ouch! Meanwhile, the “Rightwing Nuthouse” (love t [...]

  6. 6
    Southern Appeal Trackbacked With:
    9:04 pm 

    Going All Wobbly

    Looks like somebody’s spiked Prof. Bainbridge’s wine with a good dose of leftism. He has…

  7. 7
    Decision '08 Trackbacked With:
    9:29 pm 

    Prof Bainbridge Is Mad As Hell

    Our good friend Professor Bainbridge has had enough of George W. Bush:
    It’s time for us conservatives to face facts. George W. Bush has pissed away the conservative moment by pursuing a war of choice via policies that border on the criminally in…

  8. 8
    Cutler Said:
    12:23 am 

    We can still take out Iran and North Korea, but it means ditching the notion of “you broke it, you bought it,” and giving up on neo-conservativism. It also means preparing Americans for much more bloody and total warfare, a desire we’ve spent years suppressing to humanize the enemy.

    Both Iran and North Korea are getting nukes, and probably would have anyway even if we hadn’t gone into Iraq. We can’t deal with North Korea so long as the South Koreans have stockholm syndrome, and considering the costs of war, we probably wouldn’t anyway. Expect North Korea to glow in the dark if we get hit with a nuke we either can’t trace or trace to them.

    Consider it a blessing that we didn’t invade Iran while still under the illusion we could rebuild these societies so easily. Considering our problems with a country 1/3rd the size, it would have been a disaster. Defense spending needs to go up and the army increased before we can think about invading a country that’s unlikely to welcome foreign liberation to disarm them.

    Of course, if we stopped holding back militarily we can wreck both of the above examples, but it means giving up on the romantic notion that we can rebuild them back better than before.

  9. 9
    Cutler Said:
    12:26 am 

    “Expect North Korea to glow in the dark if we get hit with a nuke we either can’t trace or trace to them.”

    Forgot to say the same for Iran too.

    Also expect Saudi Arabia and other countries in the reason to start looking into going nuclear too, probably with the aid of Pakistan.

    Nope, not going to be a stressless 21st century.

  10. 10
    Cutler Said:
    12:30 am 

    Oh yeah, shortsightedness about disbanding army. Iraq may have been a fool’s errand, doomed because of our unrealistic goals, but considering those goals it was the correct thing to do. You couldn’t build a new Iraq on a corrupted military which had been staffed by Hussein cronies and carefully balanced to maintain Sunni rule. The problem was we screwed up initially in rebuilding the new military, not in choosing to do so. Everything now depends on the good airborne general getting it right the second time.

    Just my opinion.

  11. 11
    TJ Said:
    6:01 am 

    Bill said “undeniably leading to disaster” … I would argue that it is very deniable, in fact - that is most of the purpose of this post, no?

    Cutler - exactly. While in hindsight perhaps the military should not have been disbanded (retooled / screened) … at the time, with what we knew - I agree that is was the correct action.

    /TJ

  12. 12
    NIF Trackbacked With:
    6:12 am 

    So, we’ve made it back to Monday …

    Today’s dose of NIF - News, Interesting & Funny …

  13. 13
    BBoot Said:
    7:40 am 

    I am surprised by my first visit to this home of right-siders at the simple minded trust in GWB who has lied, dissembled and manipulated us all for 5 years. Not one of his policies has had the outcome predicted; rather they have benefited a small clique of wealthy business owners or served to irritate useful but not majority constituences. His most recent political deployment into intelligent design is perhaps the most egregious since it serves no one well: science is denigrated in service of politics, schools become battlegrounds for diversions of purpose, and even those who support GWB are puzzled about the point. He appears, like Nixon, to be appealing to a narrower and narrower constituency whose volume belies their size.

  14. 14
    Bill Said:
    8:26 am 

    TJ– “Bill said “undeniably leading to disaster” … I would argue that it is very deniable, in fact – that is most of the purpose of this post, no?”

    The current “strategy” is destroying our volunteer military, establishing an Islamic Republic allied with Iran and making the US look weak, cruel and incompetent. That’s pretty much a disaster in the eyes of any American patriot.

    “Cutler – exactly. While in hindsight perhaps the military should not have been disbanded (retooled / screened) … at the time, with what we knew – I agree that is was the correct action.”

    Disbanding the Iraqi army sent thousands of young men home with plenty of guns, lots of resentment and no jobs. That was patently stupid and directly resulted in the current insurgency that’s wearing down our troops just like the mujihadeen bled the Soviets dry in Afghanistan. It’s ridiculous to suggest that it ever made sense. The more excuses you make for past incompetence the more you harm the war effort going forward.

    TJ, Cutler, you need to get your heads straight and support the troops. Defending failed strategies for political reasons is what’s losing this war.

  15. 15
    Beth Said:
    10:43 am 

    This wishy-washy bullshit with “oh no, troops are dying” (in a WAR, no less!) is patently ridiculous.

    I’m “anti-war,” because I don’t want a single American to have to die due to war…BUT! I’m not against war when it’s 1) a reality, and 2) a necessity. There ARE things worth defending, you know. (Cindy Sheehan’s protests to the contrary aside.)

    I’m tired of the war, too, but it seems to me that too many people have too short an attention span and very limited strength of their convictions. I recognize real people die and shit gets broken in war; what the hell did Bainbridge and others going soft expect would happen? That’s all it is; impatience leading to doubt. NOBODY said it would be easy.

    Could there be changes in how the war is conducted? Of course. But the truth is, the war will be lost or won at HOME, not on the battlefield. The antiwar left knows that; pity Bainbridge and others don’t.

  16. 16
    Beth Said:
    10:51 am 

    Another thought: perhaps it’s only those who have served in the military who understand that war planners actually do have reasons for why certain strategies are pursued?
    Far from being “chickenhawks,” the doubters are more armchair strategists.

    It’s also becoming apparent that the ones who have a realistic view of “timetables” (a stupid concept) are the ones who understand warfare (as in, the troops and veterans, AND yes, the civilian leadership that determines strategy).

    You’re right, Rick, that the President should communicate the stakes better, because all the talk about timelines and exit strategies are pointless and basically stupid.

  17. 17
    Bill Said:
    11:02 am 

    We have to fight this war to WIN!

    Trying to win this war on the cheap ISN’T WORKING. That much is clear. The reason so many conservatives are throwing up their hands and joining the “Troops Out Now” camp is frustration at the White House’s lack of resolve in doing what’s necessary to win on the ground in Iraq.

    Sending too few troops with inadequate equipment was the first blunder. Refusal to establish order and allowing the looting of hospitals, government ministries, public utilities and ammo dumps was the second catastrophic mistake. Cutting military benefits and veterans programs has also eroded our military capacity. And the failure to articulate any strategy, objectives or metrics for success is causing the general public to turn against what is increasingly starting to look like a PR campaign with more hollow talking points that substance.

    Bush’s political advisors are controling our war policy, not the military. That’s a recipe for defeat.

    If you support the President and the war effort, you should be pressing Bush to free himself from the political hacks and give the commanders in trhe field what they say they need — namely more troops and better equipment.

    Continued failure to do that will only increase opposition and turn ever more war supporters into fed-up Out-Nowers.

  18. 18
    Bill Said:
    11:14 am 

    Beth– I agree that arbitrary timelines are foolish, and that is most clearly demonstrated by the Administration’s counter-productive, slavish clinging to the election/constitution timetable which is today resulting in a nonviable constitution for the Islamic Republic of Iraq (aka Greater Iran).

    Insisting on holding the elections before his State of the Union address (again for domestic political consumption) when even the White House admitted that large portions of the country weren’t secure enough to even have a legitimate vote — and that the entire country was so unstable that candidates couldn’t even reveal their NAMES, much less campaign like an actual democracy — assured that the Sunnis would be shut out of the government (which has, as you may have noticed, INCREASED the violence in Iraq, not lessened it).

    Now the Shiites are poised to ram though their theocratic constitution, which will only fuel the Sunni insurgency and delegitimized the new government.

    Yes, clinging to timetables in spite of realities IS stupid, Beth. You should write to the White House and remind them of that, because their devotion to arbitrary deadlines is going to cost a lot more American lives.

  19. 19
    Cutler Said:
    11:59 am 

    “TJ, Cutler, you need to get your heads straight and support the troops. Defending failed strategies for political reasons is what’s losing this war.”

    Wrapping yourself around the flag won’t get you any more points with me than Cindy Sheehan.

    “Disbanding the Iraqi army sent thousands of young men home with plenty of guns, lots of resentment and no jobs. That was patently stupid and directly resulted in the current insurgency that’s wearing down our troops just like the mujihadeen bled the Soviets dry in Afghanistan. It’s ridiculous to suggest that it ever made sense. The more excuses you make for past incompetence the more you harm the war effort going forward.”

    As I’ve already said, considering the goals, it was the correct thing. There is a difference between objectives and the steps taken to achieve those objectives. If Iraq ultimately is a defeat, then it will primarily have been due to its unrealistic objectives, not the unbanding of the military, which was necessary to achieve those objectives.

    Of course, the unrealistic goals were due to the desire to end this war without the even more deadly and longer lasting bloodbath that a less sanguine look of our options will guarentee. If we can’t reform these societies, and they continue to pose a threat to us, in time we will merely destroy and cower them.

    “The more excuses you make for past incompetence the more you harm the war effort going forward.”

    Oh really? So are you, like the Democratic Party, convinced that our future relies on an unending debate on the mistakes(?) of the past? I’m sorry, here I thought debating the future more competently moved the war effort forward. Your declaration that you are correct and that’s that it is underwhelming.

  20. 20
    Cutler Said:
    12:01 pm 

    Your declaration that you are correct and that’s that’s *all there is to it* is underwhelming.

  21. 21
    Solo Dialogue Trackbacked With:
    3:11 pm 

    The Dregs of Summer. (Politically Speaking)

    Congress is in recess, the President is on vacation (again), much of Washington is on the Delaware Shore, heck even The Note is away. So there is little, or nothing going on in Washington. Cindy Sheehan and how hard the Democrats will blast away at J…

  22. 22
    docdave Said:
    5:35 pm 

    I’ve come into this debate too late to catch all of the argument but here are my views.
    First and least important, I am not impressed by anyone who is addressed as professor and has a phd (pile higher and deeper) after their name. 99.9 percent of those called professors are leftist liberals anyway.
    Second and most important is (and I at least partial agree with Beth) that Iraq and Afghanistan are the first phase against this war against terrorism (Islam). People, this current war is just the continuation of the Crusades which begin in the eleventh century and regardless of the Catholic bashing was a war for supremacy between Christian Europe and Islam mideast!! Today the Islamic movement has money, people and has widely infiltrated most Christian based societies primarily due to loose immigration policies and multi-culturism and despite their recent setbacks, the Moslems think that they are winning. So how can one expect an end to a battle that has been raging off and on for a thousand years or more. We have no choice but to take the war to the enemy where ever they reside and they reside almost everywhere so it probably doesn’t matter much if Iran is next or not. The presence of nuclear weapons may be the deciding factor of who is invaded next but remember that Pakistan already has them. Hunker down, folks, the war won’t be over for a long time and it won’t matter much who is president after we are nuked.

  23. 23
    Classical Values Trackbacked With:
    10:37 pm 

    Partisan political war?

    Unless I am reading him wrong, Professor Bainbridge seems to think that success in the Iraq war should be measured by whether it benefits partisan (in this case conservative) politics:The conservative agenda has advanced hardly at all since the Iraq…

  24. 24
    Eunomia Trackbacked With:
    11:22 am 

    Another Republican Turns on Bush

    It’s time for us conservatives to face facts. George W. Bush has pissed away the conservative moment by pursuing a war of choice via policies that border on the criminally incompetent. We control the White House, the Senate, the House…

  25. 25
    tj Said:
    2:49 pm 

    The unbelievable twists and turns by those who seek to justify an obviously flawed, inept, ill advised campaign reminds me of Johnny Cochrane and all the obfuscations he used to confuse the jury and set free the flagrantly guilty OJ.

    Get over yourselves. Own up to your collasal mistake.

    Iraq had nothing to do with the war on terror. The Juice wasn’t chipping golf balls.

    Bush is an addled little rich boy who isn’t going to be bailed out on this one by Daddy’s friends at the SEC or rich baseball investors. If the glove doesn’t fit, Iraq will trap the terrorist flies.

    Please have the intellectual honesty to admit that your heads were/are fimly up your collective conservative asses.

    To quote that great Republican Lincoln:

    “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all the people some of the time, but you can’t run around with your head in your ass and have thinking folk take you seriously.”

  26. 26
    polyphonic tones Trackbacked With:
    1:03 am 

    polyphonic tones

    polyphonic tones
    polyphonic tones - polyphonic tones
    You are going to have a new love affair.
    You can create your own opportunities this week. Blackmail a senior executive.

  27. 27
    secured credit Trackbacked With:
    9:25 pm 

    secured credit

    secured credit
    secured credit - secured credit
    Do not sleep in a eucalyptus tree tonight.
    You will be winged by an anti-aircraft battery.

  28. 28
    body sculpting system Trackbacked With:
    6:32 pm 

    body sculpting system

    body sculpting system
    body sculpting system - body sculpting system
    All I know is what the words know, and dead things, and that
    makes a handsome little sum, with a beginning and a middle and
    an end, as in the well-built phrase and the long sonata of …

  29. 29
    Big Dogs Weblog Trackbacked With:
    6:47 pm 

    BAINBRIDGE: A THOUGHTFUL BUT FLAWED CRITIQUE OF THE WAR

    Jack ABSCAM Murtha has been a disgrace to his service and a disgrace to the Congress. He has also provided, along with all the other Democrats, talking points to the terrorists we are fighting. Here is what bin Murtha said about the plan to increase …

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