"There is always a philosophy for lack of courage."—Albert Camus

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Dubya's Last Election

The uniter, not divider---better late than never, eh?


This is not a stupid man, no matter what you read in the papers. Tuesday was his last election, and he did no better at avoiding the sixth-year jinx than FDR or Ronald Reagan did, and the judgment of history says they were pretty OK presidents.

Dubya couldn't make the case to an American people that (quite properly) hates war that we're actually in a war, because things are pretty normal here stateside, and the war is an abstraction. Not the war that Bush and his neo-cons chose to fight against Saddam, which has been over for some time now, but the bigger one of 9-11, Madrid, London's 7-7, the first World Trade Center attack, of the Khobar Towers, the USS Cole and many more incidents, the war that is not of our own choosing.

That war continues in Iraq today, not because we toppled Saddam, who needed toppling, but because it's where mideast meets west and it's the most convenient battleground for both sides.


And so, after losing his last election, Dubya is officially anointed a lame duck. To his credit (and I confess to admiring the man), he chose within 12 hours to move forward with the remaining two years of his presidency instead of digging in his heels and playing out the string.

Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld was fired today simply and sufficiently because the Democrats hate him. For Bush to perform his sacred duty to defend our country and the western world against the Islamicist tide, he needs the new Democrat congressional majority to help him win this war in Iraq, which at this point has little to do with the war against Saddam except geography.

Yes, Bush and the Bushies seriously miscalculated what Richard Perle calls the "depravity" that Iraq's Sunnis and Shias have sunk into: either side blowing up each other's women and children with suicide bombers is something that even those who opposed toppling Saddam (or opposed war in general) can't claim to have voiced as an objection.

After all, that Muslims and Arabs aren't capable of democracy or even peaceful co-existence would have been quite an anti-multiculti, if not racist, thing to say.


But now that the Democratic Party is in a position of responsibility and not just jeering and spitballing from the balcony, even non-officeholding Democrat Howard Dean admits that chaos would follow a rapid withdrawal from Iraq.

It's become clear that political disunity and loss of will in the United States has been the greatest hope for insurgents al-Qaeda and otherwise in Iraq. Dubya, albeit not the way he wanted it, has, by virtue of his own screw-ups and his party's as well, united America to "stay the course" not because we like it, but because there is no alternative.

Funny how life and politics work out somehow. As long as this was Bush's War with Republican control of congress, victory over there was impossible, since the partisan political credit could not be shared. But together, both our major parties and all us Americans, we can outfight and outnegotiate these bastards, the enemies of all humanity, for the Iraqi people's sake, our own, and the world's. Bring it on.

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