A Few More Things

Finishing up my post-election post-mortem:

1. The Democrats disproved the old axiom that you can't beat something with nothing. They did. All they had to offer to the electorate was that they were not George W. Bush and were not Republicans. Apparently, for a majority of the people who turned out to vote in an off-year election, that was enough.

2. Human sacrifice had long since fallen out of fashion here in the Americas, with the last recorded cases occurring among the Aztecs and the Mayas. Well, at least until yesterday, when Donald Rumsfeld was dragged to the top of a pyramid in Washington, D.C. and had his still-beating heart ripped out and offered to the new goddess Pelosicutli. It is unknown whether this will guarantee good crops next year.

3. Article that sums up my views perfectly: Abandoning Iraq by David Warren:

So far as President Bush can be blamed, it should be for showing insufficient ruthlessness in a task that could not be accomplished by half-measures. Alternatively, for failing to grasp that America was psychologically unprepared for real war, not only by the memory of Vietnam, but by the grim advance of "liberal" decadence in domestic life over the generation since.

The great American jurisprude, Robert Bork, expressed his foreboding to me four years ago, before Iraq had even been invaded. "It took the New York Times five years of war in Vietnam to turn on President Johnson; but this time they are at the President's throat from day one." As he further noted, the whole approach to the impending and inevitable Iraq war was being skewed by the need to assuage political and diplomatic adversaries.

As Fouad Ajami argues in his new book, The Foreigner's Gift: The Americans, the Arabs, and the Iraqis in Iraq, the invasion was so surgical that not even the functionaries of Saddam's regime suffered heavy casualties when he fell. The "Sunni Triangle" -- that patch of the country that had profitably ruled the oil-bearing remainder through decades of Saddam's terror -- in which he murdered Shias, Kurds, and uncooperative fellow-Sunnis by the hundred thousand to maintain his power -- capitulated quickly. How different from the scenes of national devastation that persuaded Germans, and then Japanese, at the end of World War II, to accept American-imposed democracy. For them, resistance was futile. For the Sunnis of Iraq, terrorist violence would be rewarded by the collapse of American will.

Exactly. Read the whole thing.