Tuesday, April 13, 2004

A vet agrees with the oldman,

Over at Drezner's the oldman wrote this:

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If you haven't been paying attention nobody minds killing bad guys except some squeamish pacifists. The real issue is how many non-bad-guys do we piss off by the collateral damage done in killing bad guys. That ratio's level is non trivial...

I wish that the pro-transformation people would admit that they really don't know if it's possible, and are taking a risk. At that point, the nation could have a dialogue about whether the risk is worth it and what the cost will be, and whether we are committing sufficient resources to succeed at it.

Instead, we get bleating "Would you rather still have Saddam in power." assinine braying out of them.

This is still a democracy. Last I heard, the electorate or their representatives weren't exactly asked if they wanted to be part of a mission to transform the entire Middle-east region. It would be nice, seeing as this is still a democracy nominally, if we did discuss and agree on such an agenda instead of the neocon apologists trying to make everyone feel guilty about not wanting to take the most historic gamble in Western Civilization since the Crusades.

Their failure to address this consent of the governed - here - much less over there increasingly convinces me that they're trying to get away with slipping it in on the sly - manipulating the public to do what they could never openly get them to agree to. This is pretty reprehensible, and they shouldn't be surprised that having failed to get the agreement of the public that the public decides to bail on them when they realize that it's been a bait and switch job.

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Shockingly, someone and a vet at that actually agreed with the oldman:

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What Oldman (the real one) said, in spades. I'm a retired U.S. Army officer and I've got no problem with killing bad guys. But I have to ask all of those who've now embraced the absolute rightness in the U.S. going off overseas and liberating the poor, oppressed peoples of the world how they would have reacted if the run-up PR campaign had focused on this objective rather than on the WMD objective. I guess I'm slow, but I see a tiny little difference between fate of the nation and "making the world safe for democracy." Some of that annoying fine print about the oath I've taken to support and defend the Constitution. But you need not be bothered by that. After all, military people are kind of weird.

I missed this one. Damn! And after all the fun I had those years in Vietnam. Do you want them to call me back next year to liberate the North Korean people? And from there, maybe the Iranians? Take care of the Axis of Evil? Shit, maybe we can liberate the Mexicans, too. They suffer under a corrupt political system, too, with some pretty undesirable fallout for the U.S. I'm ready, 24-7. Just say the word. I'll stay overseas forever, fighting the good fight. But, you know, it sure would be nice if some of you came along. I might need help.

posted by: lost in rhetoric on 04.12.04 at 11:46 PM

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Well someone speaking sense, but of course no matter what I will always respect something about military people. They realize that when it comes time for dying they're first in line, and that always informs their opinions to a degree it doesn't for most civilians. Indeed, the theme I've picked up from most of the pro-war people is that I have never seen so large a group of people so absolutely committed to sending other people to die for their own ideals and noble aspirations.

Since these people also almost uniformly fail to volunteer to fight in the front lines of the seemingly endless string of wars they propose, it seems to me that they have a little credibility gap concerning the supposed "support" America evinces for such wars. Seeing as they are Americans and themselves balking to personally die for the Great Cause they espouse. It's always easy to send someone else to die for your beliefs. It's living for them and paying the cost yourself that's hard.

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