Wednesday, November 19, 2008

A New Kind of Imperialism

Engram at Backtalk blog shred's whats left of the antiwar crowd's failed argument....

"Everyone knows you can't "impose democracy by force."

Yet, in contradiction to that view, the Iraqis just set a timetable for their next election. Obviously, the U.S. did not impose democracy by force.
Instead, against the objections of the UN, it offered democracy to the Iraqi people, and they appear to have accepted the offer.

I never really have been able to figure understand the UN-esque "principled stand" against the invasion of Iraq.
According to the anti-war crowd, the U.S. illegally invaded a "sovereign nation" and toppled its "internationally recognized leader," thereby setting a "dangerous precedent."

In essence, the invasion of Iraq was like Iraq's earlier invasion of Kuwait (i.e., that, too, was an illegal invasion of a sovereign nation in which internationally recognized leaders were deposed).

When that happened, everyone agreed that the right thing to do was to restore to power the deposed leadership of Kuwait. And that's precisely what was done. But if our invasion of Iraq was similarly in violation of international law, why were there no similar cries to restore Saddam Hussein to his rightful place as the wrongly deposed, internationally recognized leader of the sovereign nation of Iraq?
Or is there some coherent line of reasoning according to which it is a dreadful violation of international law to depose the leader of a sovereign nation, yet that leader should not be restored to power afterwards?
What is the principle that states that it is altogether wrong to depose the leader of a sovereign nation without UN approval, yet, if you do illegally depose him, you should immediately put him on trial for his crimes against humanity?
I don't get it.

To me, there was no principled reason whatsoever to oppose the forced removal of a man who was universally recognized to be a ruthless dictator.

Instead, the reasoned opposition was practical, not principled, in nature (e.g., it just won't work, ethnic hostilities run too deep, it will cause an endless civil war, a new dictator will emerge, it will inflame the Middle East, it will embolden terrorist, etc.).
But the idea that some sacrosanct principle was being violated just seems preposterous to me, and I think it seems equally preposterous even to those who used that argument to oppose Bush's decision to invade.
That's why even the anti-war crowd did not loudly agitate for the restoration of Saddam Hussein to his rightful place as the leader of Iraq when they had the chance to do so.
nstead, they insisted that his trial be fair.

According to some, not only did the U.S. "go it alone" and illegally invade a sovereign nation, it supposedly did so as part of an imperialistic grab for oil to benefit Halliburton and US oil companies.
As such, the U.S. became the greatest threat to world peace in the eyes of many.
But how many imperialistic conquistadors depose a genocidal dictator, set up a democracy in which the conquered people are allowed to vote as they please, and then further allow the democratically elected government to evict the invading forces once security is restored?
Here's the deal:

Under the agreement, U.S. forces must vacate Iraqi cities by June, leave Iraq by the end of 2011 and grant Iraqi authorities extensive power over the operations and movements of American forces. It also prohibits the U.S. from using Iraqi territory to attack Iraq's neighbors, like Syria and Iran.

I don't think there is anything left of the anti-war analysis that has not been as badly shredded as al Qaeda in Iraq.
That's why you don't hear detailed arguments from that side of the debate anymore.
Instead, you hear a bumper-sticker mantra: "end this war."
Too late.
On top of everything else, Bush did that, too.-end

Engram is a research professor and registered Democrat who documented in great detail the data from the inception of the war till now showing when and why the surge worked and much more.

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