NY Times op-ed writer and Iraq War cheerleader Thomas Friedman scribbled this today (boldface mine):
The Bush II team not only presided over two unsuccessful wars, but totally broke with American tradition and cut taxes instead of raising them to pay for those wars, weakening our balance sheet. The planning for both wars was abysmal, their execution worse and too many of our “allies” proved to be corrupt or used our presence to prosecute old feuds.
Anyone who thinks that the American people didn’t notice all this, please raise your hand. As someone who wanted us to partner with Iraqis to try to build a democracy there — in the heart of the Arab world after 9/11 — I sure noticed, and I learned several things…
First, you have to love how Friedman makes a war sound like a biotech merger: “We are excited to work with our partners to kill 100,000 people and displace millions. This will create exciting new synergies in death and destruction.”
Worse, Friedman is lying–Friedman wasn’t about democracy promotion at all (boldface mine):
I think it [the invasion of Iraq] was unquestionably worth doing, Charlie….
We needed to go over there, basically, um, and um, uh, take out a very big stick right in the heart of that world and burst that bubble, and there was only one way to do it….
What they needed to see was American boys and girls going house to house, from Basra to Baghdad, um and basically saying, “Which part of this sentence don’t you understand?”
You don’t think, you know, we care about our open society, you think this bubble fantasy, we’re just gonna to let it grow?
Well Suck. On. This.
That, Charlie, was what this war was about. We could’ve hit Saudi Arabia, it was part of that bubble. We coulda hit Pakistan. We hit Iraq because we could.
Rather than working the specific Al-Queda problem, jackasses like Friedman turned this into a Manichean war of clashing cultures, because they couldn’t accept the reality that we were hit hard due to our own failures and misplaced priorities (not to mention some bad luck as well). Many people died just so assholes like Pornstache of Understanding could feel good about themselves, to build a narrative that ‘made sense’ of a horrible day.
The next time middle-aged pundits need to resolve Daddy issues or some other personal crisis, might I suggest a sports car or a mistress? It works out much better for the rest of us.