Tuesday, December 21, 2004

Hope Where There Is None

David Brooks has an excellent article in today's New York Times regarding the series of 'mistakes' Bush and Sharon have made that have us closer to peace in that region than any other moment in my lifetime. The critics of Bush and Sharon have been adamant in their conviction that we are targeting Islam and the Arab people rather than the terrorist elements among them. At every step, we have been assured that disaster is waiting in the wings.

We were told by such opportunists as Richard Clarke that the Iraq War is only worsening the War on Terror, and numerous 'experts' have warned that there can be no democracy in Iraq. Yet a vast majority of Iraqis are quite anxious to begin their democratic experiment, and the elections are only about six weeks away.

At ProgressiveTrail.org, Mike Whitney opined:

It's doubtful that either Bush or his friends in the media will be able to keep Afghanistan out of the headlines much longer. This mess bears the
American imprimatur, and sooner or later those chickens will becoming home to roost.

Wow, Mike, when you're right, you're right! Bush couldn't keep Afghanistan out of the headlines - now anyone who isn't blinded by ideological bias knows that Afghanistan just had democratic elections, the Afghan women have been freed from the tyranny of the Taliban, and the terrorist training camps disbanded - and yes, Mike, we proudly admit that this bears the American imprimatur.

Writing at Alexander Cockburn's ultra-left CounterPoint, Michael Labah had the following pearl of wisdom regarding Sharon's 'wall':

As with its other actions since 1967, Israel is again attempting to change the facts on the ground to influence the outcome of future negotiations
and continue its efforts to make life ever more miserable for the Palestinian population with the hope that they may simply give up and leave.

Michael, you're half right - of course Sharon is trying to change the tragic situation on the ground! Is the status quo what you're defending? I would suggest, though, that the Palestinian population has been made miserable by the failed leadership of the Arafat years, and Mahmoud Abbas is signalling that perhaps the time has come to forgoe violence.

I'm not naive - I know that Israel is still not secure, the Palestinians are still miserable, the drug trade and the War on Drugs are devestating Afghanistan in equal measure, and there are still way too many Iraqis and Americans dying in Iraq. My point is this: Bush and Sharon each have had the courage to say things are not acceptable as is, there must be a change, and we intend to move forward despite the inevitable harping from the Left. In this season of peace, let's say a prayer that their endeavors continue to bear fruit.

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