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Full Version: William F. Buckley on Iraq: It did not work
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NRO

Quote:One can't doubt that the American objective in Iraq has failed
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And the administration has, now, to cope with failure.

The article is not up to the usual WFB standard, but it is interesting already that he chose to write it and NRO published it.

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APPEND. Quite a stir on Free Republic; it seems that Buckley upset many people. Link
The article has some merit...but I detest it's Headline.

You know, The United States took a number of years to come together as a civil union. Can we expect more of a people so divided by religion/sectarianism?

.......dark days at "valley forge". (Where George Washington wintered his tattered Continental Army)
Ken
KenBean Wrote:The article has some merit...but I detest it's Headline.

This too, but I'm more upset about the analysis being a bit shallow.

Quote:You know, The United States took a number of years to come together as a civil union. Can we expect more of a people so divided by religion/sectarianism?

One way to put it.

I'd put this a bit differently: for the political process to take firm roots one must develop entities (political parties or something else) that transcend the tribal/religious divisions in the country.

This may be possible...after a few generations.

It is strange that for a country to function you must have divisions, but maintained at a low level of intensity. For example, while I dislike the democrats, I would think of killing one, heck, I would even buy a hotdog from a vendor with a "Vote Democrat" button. But in a country seriously divided across the national/religious line divisions are way too strong.

Buckley could have mentioned the Allawi's party as one small success -- it is a kind of national party that even got some votes -- but it is really small and not enough to change the overall picture.
I think William's analysis is at least partially accurate. We all know it is to the extent he points out that Bush's views of how the Iraqis would react to military defeat and our mentorship was almost 100% in error.

I think William is jumping to conclusions though to conclude they are irredeemable so far as having a democracy as we know it. Look at Algeria for an example,they've had FAR worse violence for far longer and it seems they are locked into the democratic political paradigm. In fact,since they voted the terrorists have lost ground.

It's a dark period in Iraq and of course it may be a failure,but objectively,it's not the time to make the judgement. IF they fall into a civil war,then he is correct and we don't need to lose our children seperating that out,either.

One last point,William's views are most likely colored by his traditional "conservative" views of conflict and America whereas Bush is not a traditional conservative at all in foreign affairs,he's closer to Woodrow Wilson in his views.