February 21, 2007

War, how it is seen, how it is!

Would a war by any other name be just as odious? If we called it something else, would young and brave men and women still enlist to fight for our country? Would ideologues on the other side, still strap explosives on their person or load up their vehicles with explosives and detonate themselves in the midst of men in commerce, children playing, and mothers out for a stroll or soldiers from a number of countries trying to bring peace? Would the nay-sayers still be against any war or expression of war not suited to their purposes?

It has been called the "War on Terror" the "Global War on Terror" with acronyms like WOT and GWOT, but is it really? Is it a war against the people of the Middle East who were just minding their own business? Questions abound, few answers are apparent. Yet, if we continue to use the same old tired and overused verbage, I foresee no amount of discourse that will ever produce agreement on our goals, aims, and strategies. So I propose a new way to look at our goals and aspirations, a "re-framing" if you will.

First, who are we really fighting? Al Qaeda or the more global term "islamofascists?" I submit that this is a war, not on terror for that is a tactic and not an entity. I submit that we are not at war with Al Qaeda, though we are certainly fighting them. We are not at war with Islam, though the vast majority of those we are fighting are Muslim. We are engaged, not with a tactic, but with an ideology, and worse yet, one that is stateless, though supported by a number of states, notably Iran, Syria and Saudi Arabia (and for those of you who believe that the Saudi's are our allies, I have a bridge in Brooklyn for sale, cheap and easily transported to the location of your choice).

In all previous wars, declared and undeclared, the United States was at war with another country, one with recognizable borders and with an army, one that shot back and had the opportunity to win, if they had the strength and the will and character to do so. Fortunately for the US, and I daresay, the world, that has not happened. We, have been victorious in every war we have fought save two and in both cases, politics not strategy on the field was the deciding factor.

The first was of course the Korean War. That war was halted and an armistice was signed and nothing really resolved. Then Vietnam, the first Television War if you will. With popular opinion (perhaps manipulated via the Tonkin Gulf Resolution) behind him, Lyndon Johnson significantly expanded the war but without a clear strategy to end it (sound familiar?). Nixon ran on, and was in part elected on a promise to end the war; though it took him four years to extricate the US and declare "Peace with Honor." Our allies in that war, South Vietnam were supported by us, but that support was withdrawn by congress after years of rioting, objection, demonstrations and a loss of will.

In both cases, the United States could easily have bested both North Korea and North Vietnam but there were greater "geo-political" issues at play; specifically a nuclear armed Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and the Democratic Peoples Republic of China and that threat though maybe fairly small, was a real threat non-the-less. And so, though we almost always won on the battle field in Vietnam and Korea, we lost at the political bargaining table.

Our enemy today, and yes, it is an enemy is as deadly as any we have faced in the past. Not because of the strength of the sponsoring state, for there is none, but because of the availability and ease transport of weapons of terror. Thus, there is vast disagreement about the aims of this war. Are we engaged in a life struggle against an implacable foe or are we engaged in the spreading of democracy among those that don’t want, need or have much experience with it. So, let us consider a re-frame, a new way of looking at and describing the war.

  1. We are at war with an implacable foe who is armed with weapons of terror and whose ideology is islamofascistic in nature.

  2. The nature of the ideology is foreign both to the Islamic faith for the most part, and foreign to the behavior and activities of civilized nations.

  3. The goal of this war must be perforce victory against an ideology; not an easy task to be sure, but the only one which will preserve western civilization.

  4. The strategy of this war must also be to “take out” imprison or otherwise neutralize adherents of the enemy ideology for if we do not, then like infection grown immune to antibiotics, the infection will return with perhaps deadly force.

The realization of the above should be intuitive, but obviously it is not. There are many who believe that the west in general and the United States in particular is the big bully on the street and that 9/11 was our “comeuppance.” Many on this side, call themselves the “reality based community” (RBC) in a bit of narcissistic mental masturbation because reality is a history of attacks against the United States and other western nations by the very islamofascists foe that the RBC thinks can be negotiated with. Does the RBC believe that there are not thousands of individuals slain in terror attacks around the world? Oh, I know, I will be blasted by some because I didn’t recognize the thousands of innocents in Iraq, Afghanistan and Somalia who have been killed as a result of military action. The difference between these two groups of dead is, it would seem, totally lost on the left. In one, the deaths are acts of terrorism, in the other as a result of the prosecution of a war. Do members of the RBC think that no “enemy” civilians died in WWII or Korea or Vietnam?

It would also seem to be intuitive, though it is not, that those who call themselves progressives or liberal would understand that this fight against islamofascism is in their best intrests as those who hold to that noxious ideology, for example, liberals, progressives are big supporters of womens rights, as they should be, yet, to an islamofascist this, from today's headlines, is appropriate:

A Pakistani minister and woman’s activist was shot dead Tuesday by an Islamic extremist for refusing to wear the veil.
Can't happen in THIS country yet, one only has to look at the islamic cabdriver who ran down his fares with his cab, what happened to Theo van Gogh in Holland or the "threats" to behead those who insult Islam in England. Should Shaira become law, the beliefs of the left will be flushed down the proverbial toilet. In fact, the attitudes and practices of the left remind me not so much of a will to disbelieve that their political opponents (the right, the neocons and others who don't "toe the line" such as Joe Lieberman) are the antithesis of freedom, but that they actively practice the belief system of Timothy Treadwell.

Now, for those of you not in the know, Mr. Treadwell was a fanatic about bears

...who routinely eased up close to bears to chant "I love you'' in a high-pitched, sing-song voice..."
right up to the point where they killed and ate him. This is the ultimate fate of those who coddle the islamofascists not by espousing their hateful ideology, but by insisting that the danger is slight, the people "misunderstood" and the need to be civilized and negotiate at the table. We call that mode of thought "denial" in the mental health field and it has serious consequences as Mr. Treadwell found out to his undoing.

Which of course, brings us back to the question of war, what is it that we are engaged in. Is it US Imperialism or is it a fight to the death between the forces of civilization and islamofascism. I propose that it is indeed the latter and until those in denial wake up, the war is in danger of being lost.

Posted by GM Roper at February 21, 2007 08:05 AM | TrackBack

very, very well put, GM...we are little by little losing our national resolve to deal with anything unpleasant, much less a decisive conflict.

Posted by ric ottaiano at February 21, 2007 08:49 AM

Hiya GM..I give u truckloads of credit for even trying to explain our MO to Libs and the like..It insults my very being that the brainless, self hating Libs accuse US of being the ones who caused and provoked this...God bless ya my friend!!!

Posted by Angel at February 21, 2007 09:19 AM

"We" are NOT at war! "We" (if you mean the USA) are disjointed and flailing about like an idiot in a drunken frenzy. And those elephants and mice "We" see in our DT's are just too, too much to handle. But, most of the good folks who make up the greater part of "We" aren't even concerned and they're busy ignoring all this insanity. Most of "them" don't give a damn about anything but their job, family, rent, insurance, taxes, car payments, kids' schools, basketball practice, and --if they have the energy-- maybe, but only just, getting the energy to go to church, temple, synagogue, or mosque and ask the good gods they still worship (when they have time to think about him'her'it) to help them make it to the next step of the ladder of life. Just because some former Texican governator gets elected by 50% of the 30% of the folks who went out to vote in the past two general elections, and we get bombed on 9-11, and he goes invading Afghanistan and Iraq, and he let's go the one general who could fight (after we captured Iraq) and hires a bunch of idiots who couldn't and still can't, and he plays his cards like his name was LBJ or Carter or Clinton, well --I just have to tell you this, sorry if it hurts-- this bone headed idiot and his bone headed administration deserve to fail and the American people deserve to fail, cause nobody's home at the White House except the inmates that "We" elected from the GOP mental ward. (True! They are less pathetic than the DNC bunch, BUT not by much!). Life's a riot! Twenty-Five Great Generations build a country and it only takes three to run it into the ground! "We're" all to blame, aren't we?

Posted by Rue-Mur at February 21, 2007 09:36 AM

Rue-Mur, master of the run-on sentence and saying nothing. Hard to respond to someone who hasn't progressed beyond using petty little name calling to vent their impotent rage.

Posted by Oyster at February 21, 2007 11:45 AM

We are fighting Osama bin-Laden's war. And by that, I mean he provoked the war and did so because it was to his advantage and the advantage of his cause to do so and President Bush fell right into his trap. Democrats can talk about pulling back all they want, but we're going to be stuck in Iraq for quite some time to one degree or another wasting precious lives and resources that could be better used elsewhere. That is what the war is, GM.

Posted by e. nonee moose at February 21, 2007 12:02 PM

Moose my beloved friend, your's is precisely the kind of thinking that I think we need to get rid of, and to be honest, I think my kind of thinking up until say 8 or 9 months ago was too. This is not about Iraq, about Afghanistan or any other "part" of the war on islamofascism, this is about the war as a whole. Partisan politics such as postulated by Schumer, Clinton, Pelosi, Murtha and others needs to cease, we, as a whole need to understand that there is a greater war here against a greater danger than just Iraq or Al Qaeda. This is a struggle, not of civilizations, but of ideology. Shall Western civilization or Islamofascism prevail? We all need to get behind the idea that it is Islamofascism that is the real enemy, regardless of its various iterations.

Posted by GM at February 21, 2007 12:07 PM

Ooooh. Cheap adult DVDs. Nice.

Good post, GM. I disagree with a lot of your characterization of the liberal position (it's not uniformly wrong, but significantly over generalized in my opinon) and your sense that previous wars were lost politically and not militarily - I would argue they were lost militarily and ended politically, but there's no need to get into all that headiness.

Instead, I'd like to focus on the stuff we're closer on. Your basic premise, that there is an "ideology" that hates the United States and our enlightenment values, is valid. And I agree that we need to push back against the spread of this violent, theocratic perversion of Islamic thought. I believe the best way to combat an idea is with a competing idea. The best argument against theocratic fascism is democratic liberalism, not war. Now, it is certainly true that our country cannot ignore those who try to do us violent harm. Al Qaida and the like must be confronted. But that confrontation must only be to ensure our safety for it is very ineffective at persuading the skeptical that our ideas of justice, human rights, and democracy are superior. War may subjugate, but it almost never persuades (WWII seems the exception, but of course the circumstances were very different).

As a side note, the Iraq War has many more dimensions than simply a fight against those who would attack the United States or the violent theocrats. Just worth mentioning.

Posted by Mavis Beacon at February 21, 2007 12:17 PM

We are not at war with Islam, though the vast majority of those we are fighting are Muslim.

Well this certainly 'sounds' nice, and I really do appreciate 'nice' things. I even want to be 'nice'. Don't we all ?

But I have one minor little quibble if I may.

The 'rationale' for the Iraq Situation was in part as you say " the spreading of democracy among those that don’t want, need or have much experience with it". But this rather implies that there was some high-minded idealistic reason for wanting to assist the benighted of the world to lever themselves out of their self-imposed desolation.

I think not.

The 'Democracy Project' was merely a tool designed for use to construct an alternative reality in the sink-hole that is the Middle East. Much as you would use a saw and a hammer to construct a better house for your neighbour. One might really like one's saw and hammer, but that does not imply that you want to use them to build that neighbour's new house. What you want is for your neighbour to stop sending its many 'black sheep' over to your property where they run amok, while mindlessly reciting some 13th century dogmas.

Most of us could not care less if vast swathes of the Islamic World lives in squalor and barbarism for all of eternity. I certainly don't. I just want them to keep the 'problem children' at home where they can ruin nothing but themselves. But they won't. Primarily because they can't. Islamism is essentially a retreat from 'modernity'. A retreat founded in a fanatic contempt for Infidels and their 'evil' ways, but supported on the ground by those who in their heart of hearts are pissed right off because while they can 'see' the things others have, know all too well that they will never have them. So the next best thing is a deliberate retreat to a primitive form of 'spirituality' where the 'others' are to blame for everything and you are the 'true' defenders of all that is really valuable in the world. I think most people just want to live without anguish, but it is because their societies cannot possibly provide that opportunity that internal despair is the father to outwardly directed rage.

Until the Middle East starts producing opportunities and not dysfunction, we can expect an endless supply of 'martyrs for the cause'. And the likelihood of that change happening in the 'normal' course of development. Slim to none. One has only to read Churchill's vivid condemnation of Islam and its social results to see that even then(in its natural state) it locked its believers into a cycle of temporal hopelessness and 'spiritual' immoderation.

That 'structural' problem was the ONLY reason the 'Democracy Project' was considered to be a worthwhile endeavor. Not so much well-intentioned as self-defensive.

So now that the 'Democracy Project' is slowly but inexorably going the way of all things, where does that leave us ? I think it leaves us back at square one.

GM says that we are 'not at war with Islam', but with a Stateless Fascist Ideology. Well clearly that is true in a most fundamental sense, but that is like saying that we were not at war with Germany, only with Nazism and its uniformed adherents. Let us suppose for an instant that the enemy in WW2, wore no identifying uniforms, and simply existed as part of the WHOLE population whenever they were not killing YOU. How would the War have then been fought? Would there have been any possibility of differentiating between 'civilians' and 'combatants' ? How would victory have been achieved without treating everyone as not only a potential but an actual active enemy ? You are not an enemy when you turn on those who are. Until then----

We are in the same situation now. Islam is NOT going to reform itself. It has not done so for CENTURIES. It is possibly forbidden to even consider the thought that it needs 'reform'. How can 'perfection' not be 'perfect' ? It will therefore continue to produce LOONS. Many,many,many LOONS. Or rather Islam itself(as a belief structure) might not automatically produce them, but the most influential schools of 'thought' within Islam will handle that function very well, thank you very much.

So in a sense annoying as it might be to contemplate, we ,in a sense, really are 'At War With Islam'. Not because we want to be, but because we can't possibly separate the wheat from the chaff without active help from the wheat. And it's not being all that helpful at the moment.

So what to do ? What to do ?

As I see it there are 3 course of action.

A. Do nothing, simply 'take the hits' , and react with targeted reprisals against the most likely targets of opportunity. This is the current 'default' plan of the usual suspects. The Alfred E. Newman approach to World Events.

B. Try to 'modify' Islam at its base so that it becomes more 'modern' friendly and 'tolerant' or at the minimum 'afraid' of what you might eventually do in the future. Not working out quite as we had hoped, I fear. Since this aspect of the 'solution' depends almost exclusively on the Middle East becoming 'functional' , I am not exactly holding my breath waiting for 'results'. One step forward, one step back. Rinse and repeat. Forever.

C. The Dreaded Plan "B" .

If this continues to be 'merely' an incident here and an incident there, we will probably just 'muddle through'. Factor it into the insurance equations and treat it much like the risk of air travel. Probably not going to happen to me and it sucks to be YOU.

If the Big One ever goes off in a major city ? Well I can't be sure, but I have a feeling that certain real World Real Estate values will be heading sharply downwards(not that they are very exalted now), and the welcome mat will be pulled from under a lot of feet(undeserved or no).

At this point is it not fundamentally up to the 'wheat' to get its act together ? It's really not about what 'we' should do ; it's about what others should do. I hope the Powers That Be are making this point very clearly to the State Agents that are gleefully supporting this existential threat. But somehow I have my doubts.

Posted by dougf at February 21, 2007 12:45 PM

"Most of us could not care less if vast swathes of the Islamic World lives in squalor and barbarism for all of eternity. I certainly don't."

On a personal level, I disagree thoroughly. Maybe you were deliberately over-generalizing for brevity's sake, but there are vast numbers of people in the Middle East who don't want, nor do they deserve, squalor and barbarism. There are vast numbers of people who don't partake in the actual fighting for their rights, but that's only because decades, nay centuries, of oppression have taught them to cower. It doesn't mean they don't want or deserve liberty.

Then there are those actively pursuing it, Iraqi bloggers, Iraqis signing up for the military, and Iraqi and Afghani women opening businesses and taking off their veils that must be commended and deserve our support, because they are the ones who will turn their peers and fellow countrymen in the right direction.

There is Hirsi Ali, Dr. Sultan, those at freemuslims.org and so many others encouraging others to speak out. We HAVE made a difference and to quit would be foolish.

Forget the politicians. They're useless.

Posted by Oyster at February 21, 2007 01:20 PM

'On a personal level, I disagree thoroughly."--Oyster

Would you really care so much had those planes not been crashed into the Towers ?

Would you even have known about Iraq at all ?

My point is that the current 'interest' in the welfare of those you rightly mention in your post is inherently SELFISH. As it should and must be if we are to use resources effectively. We want them to succeed because it has a direct/indirect benefit to us. It is to be blunt, utilitarian. They are IMPORTANT to us. That they are so deserving is a very welcome addition.

I personally think that Zimbabwe is a disgrace to the World and that Mugabe should be decorating a tree somewhere. But do I think we should be doing something about that ? No I don't. Same with Darfur. I 'regret' these things but that's it. And since my 'regret' and about a $1.00 will buy you a coffee, saying that I 'regret' them is no better in the practical sense than saying I 'don't care'. On the ground where it counts the results are exactly identical. Only my internal landscape might be affected or displayed by choosing one 'form' over the other. And frankly the World cares not at all about my 'internals'.

So it wasn't really brevity that led me to use that phraseology. It was Geo-Political REALITY. We do things because they are perceived to benefit us. Sometimes we do things because it benefits us in a non-material sense, and makes us feel better about ourselves, but we severely LIMIT the amount of those type of things, because we simply can't drain the Ocean.

We would not have chosen to try to 'help' Afghanistan or Iraq out of their states of decay had not it been perceived as 'useful' to us.

We just wouldn't.

Posted by dougf at February 21, 2007 01:43 PM

doug f., I'm not going to get into to you regarding your belief that we should war with all Muslims (at least I think that's what you're advocating). It's beyond crazy.

Meanwhile, I'll defend Oyster and suggest that just because YOU don't care about people in other countries and YOU don't want to do anything doesn't mean the rest of us are so hard hearted. You Randians are a foolish bunch. Just because I don't, and I suspect Oyster does not, advocate invading Zimbabwe doesn't mean we shouldn't be involved. Our country has a great deal of power and, spiderman-like responsibility. We don't need to invade or commit vast resouces to have an enormous impact. Stop trying to force us into manichean choices, that's the kind of crappy thinking that gets us into unnecessary wars.

Posted by Mavis Beacon at February 21, 2007 02:16 PM

Your thought are throught-provoking and I want to play off of them.

First, the "war on terror" is largely a rhetorical phrase campaign language, like the "war on poverty" and the "war on drugs" etc. You cannot be at 'war' with terror or drugs or poverty.

There were two wars - recently - one against the regime in Afghanastan and one against the regime in Iraq. I submit that we've already won both. We should be celebrating more than we have.

Now, you ask, if we've already won, why are we still there? The answer requires a lot of nuance to justify, but basically, we are trying to prevent the repeat scenarios of the last regimes that occupied those lands. If we get lucky, we might see truly representitive and liberal governments evolve over time and that would make the world better for decades.

Posted by Steved at February 21, 2007 02:36 PM

Stop trying to force us into manichean choices, that's the kind of crappy thinking that gets us into unnecessary wars.--MB

See GM ? What did I tell you ? Winning friends and influencing people one soul at a time. ---- :-)

ps --Mavis I'll have you know that I deeply resent the 'crappy' adjective. Now had you used fascistic, immoral, benighted, or even insane, I would gladly have concurred. But 'crappy'. Now that is beyond the pale. --- :-)

Posted by dougf at February 21, 2007 03:33 PM

This is not about Iraq, about Afghanistan or any other "part" of the war on islamofascism, this is about the war as a whole.

Oh, well then the solution is easy. Just burn up all the oil as quick as we can and the problem will go away. Once there's no more oil in the Middle East, we won't care about them and they won't care about us. Problem solved!

Posted by e. nonee moose at February 21, 2007 04:13 PM

Moose, saying this is about oil is about as simplistic as you can get. If you will agree that oil has furnished the wherewithal to fund islamofascism and the terroristic tactics it uses then we will have a point of agreement that we can work from, but saying the if we forget about oil, the problem is solved is as nuts as anything you say we conservatives and neocons believe. Sorry my friend, it would have been cheaper just to buy Saddam's oil.

Posted by GM at February 21, 2007 04:23 PM

To split a hair here, I did not technically say it was all about oil. I said it would be over when all (or more realistically, most) of the oil reserves in the Middle East have been used up. I think that's an undeniably true statement if for no other reason because our capacity to wage a conventional war will be greatly reduced. Using up all the oil will greatly reduce terrorism as well. So fill up that Hummer and take the long way home today. It's the only way to make peace a reality! :)

Posted by e. nonee moose at February 21, 2007 04:58 PM

No Doug, nothing selfish in my sentiments. I didn't get anything in return for my donations to the tsunami victims, Katrina victims or the Gorilla Foundation. What happens to any of those people or whether gorillas go entirely extinct is no benefit or detriment to me at all. And I am fully aware that one of my dollars likely went to someone in Indonesia who would advocate for my stoning because I don't wear a veil.

While you are correct I knew little about Afghanistan or Iraq before 9/11, it has no bearing on my feelings. I was taught to care from an early age and taught not only to never expect anything in return, but not to brag about it either. If you do, then your actions are business oriented, not philanthropic gestures.

Some things are right to do just because they are good and right. Because a segment of the population in the Middle East would gleefully throw it back in my face is not cause enough to abandon those that don't.

And frankly, I resent your implication that there IS something selfish in my words.

Posted by Oyster at February 22, 2007 03:08 PM

Hey GM, I sort of like moose's tongue-in-cheek idea. After all, we probably won't solve any of this until they do run out of money. There are simpler solutions - actually fighting a war, for example, but we don't seem able to bring ourselves to do that.

So, build a batch of nuclear plants and start buying ATV's.

Tangent: Why are we so concerned about nuclear waste storage to last 10,000 years? If our descendants can't figure out what to do with it in a 1,000 years, screw 'em. Heck, I'd drop to 300.

Posted by Assistant Village Idiot at February 22, 2007 05:21 PM

And frankly, I resent your implication that there IS something selfish in my words.--Oyster

I did not mean to imply that YOU were motivated by SELFISH considerations, but rather that the STATE always operates in a fundamentally selfish manner. It ideally operates in the interests of its citizens or at least is suppose to do so. That means that it must weigh what it attempts to accomplish in the World against what it perceives to be in the best long-term interests of its citizens.

My apologies if you took the verbal short-forms for an evaluation of your personal value system. What do I know about YOU ? And why frankly should I comment on what YOU do ? That would be not only crass and rude, but also not very useful in the context of the article.

I regret the faulty choice of words but certainly not the underlying assumptions as to Geo-Political Motivations. States don't necessarily do things because they are 'right'; Individuals as you point out may well so do.

Again I understand your resentment here but I really was not trying to attribute motivations to persons. Just to States. Sorry you felt yourself 'collateral damage'.

Posted by dougf at February 22, 2007 05:51 PM

The nature of the ideology is foreign both to the Islamic faith for the most part, and foreign to the behavior and activities of civilized nations.

This is the crux of the matter. Certainly the second half is true with respect to our concept of civilized nations though the Islamists may substantially disagree as to the definition of civilized and view us as uncivilized.

It's the first half of the sentence that is undecided within the ranks of the followers of Islam. There are many variants of Islamic practice, although certain elements do seem to be largely held in common, such as the superiority of Islam, the divine authorship of the Koran, the subordination of women to men, and the desire to see the world submitted to Allah. And Islam does have a history of military conquest and forcible conversion (and/or subjugation of infidels).

Christianity also has its history of military conquest, but in the past few centuries has elected to spread its influence by non-military means. The question is whether Islam will similarly decide to enter the marketplace or insist on imposing its faith by force.

Again, the matter devolves to the word foreign. We have the spectacle of Saudi Arabia as the sponsor of Wahhabism, which claims its inspiration from the Koran, the foundational text of Islam. While it historically represents a minority viewpoint in terms of its interpretation and application of the Koran, I would find it difficult to label it as foreign as opposed to a home-grown variant.

The other feature is that the Saudi government is exuberantly spending its oil revenues to spread Wahhabism through establishing schools, buying professorships, building mosques, funding imans, etc. The Iranian variant is engaged in similar monied proselytization. And both are steadily gaining adherents. Those of other persuasions are underfunded and often have less clarity as to their distinctives.

Thus calling the Islamists foreign is too optimistic; we have a struggle within Islam as to its definition. Islamists are still a minority view, but their rapid growth, if not reversed, threatens to dominate Islam.

Posted by civil truth at February 22, 2007 07:03 PM

We are engaged, not with a tactic, but with an ideology, and worse yet, one that is stateless,...

This sums up the crux of the problem in fighting this war. The usual strategy and tactics of war won't work. We must find an approach that neutralizes and eliminates the threats to our freedom.

Many liberals and "progressives" have trouble understanding the threat of islamofascism because of the similarities between the two. Both have a goal of controlling our behavior and our minds just the dogmatic beliefs are different.

Posted by DADvocate at February 22, 2007 07:31 PM

Stateless enemies will be the norm as we go forward. Nations will assist terrorists, but less and less traceably. One of the complaints going into this war was the supposed tenuousness of Iraq's connection to terrorism in general, AQ in specific. Get used to it. The next time the thread will be even thinner. We can no longer rely on our old expectations.

Posted by Assistant Village Idiot at February 22, 2007 09:27 PM

As a young person I feel embarrassed that my generation has almost ZERO concern for this war, nor any UNDERSTANDING of the consequences of failure.

People want to be like ostriches. Like GM said, this is denial. The fast-paced, pill-popping, easy-way-out popular culture seems entirely incapable of any kind of coordinated national effort to win this war, and the democrats clearly place political opportunism ahead of a meaningful victory in Iraq.

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