Using Bees To Effect Vengeance

I get to be as self-indulgent as I want without wasting anyone's time. Guilt-free solipsism -- excellent!

Looking for that particular entry? Search Using Bees....

This page is powered by Blogger. Why isn't yours?

Weblog Commenting by


Email the Proprietor

Monday, May 24, 2004
Novelist par excellence Mark Helprin on Iraq. The righteous indignation at the Bush administration is to be expected (although it's always nice to hear Republicans who can no longer pretend it's anything other than a shambles), but I do think some of his arguments against "the left" are a little hollow.

First of all, the conflation between "the terrorists" and Iraq is in evidence. al-Qaeda attacked us. Saddam Hussein did not. There's an argument to be made that Hussein could have helped get weapons into the hands of terrorists, but -- in a mirror of Helprin's Venezuela argument -- there are many states higher up that list than Iraq was.

Also, it's true that "multilateralism" is a little like fairy dust to the left, but to ask whether "it makes it any more right when additional countries sign on" is a straw man. The problem is one of legitimacy -- not moral legitimacy, but legitimacy in the eyes of the Iraqi people, so yes, actually, it does make a difference if other world powers/bodies sign on. Other than that, many of the critiques are on point, but really only apply to a small (if vocal) element of the left-wing. There are plenty of Democrats who do not contemplate the exercise of American power with horror, who acknowledge the potential for legitimate exercise of it, and who recognize our right to self-defense. Some of them have issues with our Iraq policy as well, although you wouldn't know it from Helprin's piece.


Comments: Post a Comment