Wednesday, August 16, 2006

US, Middle East: Triumph Of Unrealism, George Will Call Out Dubya

Starting in Lebanon
Will first of all is dismissive of anything the U.N. might do to enforce the peace in Lebanon after decades of silliness.

Regarding force now, the U.N. merely "expresses its intention to consider in a later resolution further enhancements" of the U.N. force that for 28 years has been loitering without serious intent in south Lebanon.

Which Brings Us To The Rest Of The Region

The "new Middle East," the "birth pangs" of which we supposedly are witnessing, reflects the region's oldest tradition, the tribalism that preceded nations.The faux and disintegrating nation of Iraq, from which the middle class, the hope of stability, is fleeing, has experienced in these five weeks many more violent deaths than have occurred in Lebanon and Israel


Law Enforcement Vs. Invading 3rd Countries And Regime Change

The theme is that better law enforcement, which probably could have prevented Sept. 11, is central to combating terrorism. F-16s are not useful tools against terrorism that issues from places such as Hamburg (where Mohamed Atta lived before dying in the North Tower of the World Trade Center) and High Wycombe, England.

George Gets Tough on George
While John Kerry brought this point up in the 04 campaign, Republican figures around the administration make a point of being dismissive. Will quotes one such figure who said "[Democrats] do not have the understanding or the commitment to take on these forces. It's like John Kerry. The law enforcement approach doesn't work." Will then goes off on it:

This farrago of caricature and non sequitur makes the administration seem eager to repel all but the delusional. But perhaps such rhetoric reflects the intellectual contortions required to sustain the illusion that the war in Iraq is central to the war on terrorism, and that the war, unlike "the law enforcement approach," does "work."

The official is correct that it is wrong "to think that somehow we are responsible -- that the actions of the jihadists are justified by U.S. policies." But few outside the fog of paranoia that is the blogosphere think like that. It is more dismaying that someone at the center of government considers it clever to talk like that. It is the language of foreign policy -- and domestic politics -- unrealism.

Foreign policy "realists" considered Middle East stability the goal. The realists' critics, who regard realism as reprehensibly unambitious, considered stability the problem. That problem has been solved.

Harsh, but pretty much on point.


SOD said...

Interesting article by George Will. I only know that he's the guy the 'right wing' folks would take seriously.

Law enforcement, ala what John Lurch Kerry was offering, is the only way to protect against terrorism.

Many WOT commentators always revert to what happened during WW2 to discuss how the WOT should be fought. Their conclusions are less effective than a United nations debating shop resolution.

Someone should remind Will which countries are sending 'peacekeepers' into The Leb. Hint, cheese for monkey springs to mind.

Boli-Nica said...

The WWII analogy has been used for years. Ironically, Rumsfeld and company started out with an emphasis on a "leaner" and more "nimble" military, so it could respond to "unconventional" threats. But, they forgot the lesson that fighting a war is one thing, occupying/stabilizing territory is quite another. Mess=Iraq