At the behest of several highly respected Redstaters, Here is my reply to an outbreak of Bush Derangement Syndrome on David Hinz’s post, Blame It All On George W Bush. Thanks to everyone who urged me to post this as a diary!
The BDS bearing comment was this:
Bush a great president???
vedette1 Sunday, June 21st at 11:29AM EDT (link)
Oh I get it. You guys have gone to your happy place where the truth doesn’t matter, and every day is opposite day.
Under George W. Bush, the war in Afghanistan was a muddled mess and the Taliban were making a resurgence. Obama has figured out that we need to take out the poppy fields that fund the Taliban war effort. It also has the added benefit of forcing the Taliban to come out of their caves to defend the poppy fields where we can get to them. He also switched commanders to one who hopefully will be more careful not to kill civilians.
Afghanistan resembles a democracy only in Republican la-la land. It remains a tribal country ruled by warlords. The government doesn’t have any authority outside the capital.
To tie the events in Iran with Bush’s bumbling attempt to establish a democracy in Iraq is yet another example of Republicans smoking their unique brand of crack. The Iranian Revolution 2.0 is hardly the result of anything happening in Iraq, but is instead the product of 30 years of theocratic oppression, and a young demographic that wants to join the rest of the world.
Bush set back American foreign policy by decades with his middle-school swagger and boasting.
My reply, which did come long after the kosite had been driven off by many others:
What part of Iraq and Afghanistan did you gather this data in?
I guess you were in different parts of the country(s) than I have been, vendette1. Oh, sorry, I should have realized by your trumpeting of your party’s line that you gathered your incontrovertible evidence from Harry “surrender monkey” Reid and the Drive-by Media.
“Under George W. Bush, the war in Afghanistan was a muddled mess and the Taliban were making a resurgence. Obama has figured out that we need to take out the poppy fields that fund the Taliban war effort… …He also switched commanders to one who hopefully will be more careful not to kill civilians.”
What makes an Afghan want to become a Taliban? I believe the reasons are much the same as those that make an American want to become a Statist Politician, the desire for power. If we are going to redistribute America’s wealth it is better to be one of those doing the distributing than one who is having his wealth confiscated and redistributed. In Afghanistan, if the country is going to be ruled from gunpoint, it is better to be aiming the weapon than having it aimed at you.
Obama figured out the poppy thing, huh? Yea, no one there noticed the problem, tried to change political policy or assist the Afghan Government in executing their own eradication effort. Which Commander was “not” careful when it came to killing civilians? How familiar are you with GEN Petraeus’ COIN tactics? Or the tactics of the terrorists? Would it be worth the price of losing months of trust and effort with the populace to risk collateral damage in an attempt to kill Osama bin Laden? Or Siraj Haqqani, Baitullah Mesuud, or Mullah Omar? How good is the intel, can you trust it? You and Nancy have the luxury of judging the quality of intel with hindsight (Bush Lied, blah, blah, blah). Try judging it on the spot, with American Troops in the line of fire, an interpreter telling you what is being said by the enemy as you listen to their radio transmissions, a pair of F15s telling you they can only remain on station for another 10 minutes and then your men are on their own… Don’t forget the terrorists’ penchant for launching attacks from populated areas, using human shields or, (gasp!) lying about who was killed in an attack.
“Afghanistan resembles a democracy only in Republican la-la land. It remains a tribal country ruled by warlords. The government doesn’t have any authority outside the capital.”
Is the government in Afghanistan great? Hardly, is ours? Are their politicians corrupt? The majority damn sure are. Don’t forget, we are the ones teaching them how to build a democracy; their government is but a reflection of our own. A pale reflection at that, they don’t have Dingy Harry, Pelosi, Dodd, Kennedy, Kerry, Rangel… What we call a politician, by any other name (Warlord?) would smell as sweet.
I attended a jirga (think townhall meeting) in Khost Province in 2007, nearly a thousand men and their families had travelled miles that could take days to traverse, to sit in a stifling hot tent with Arsala Jamal, the Governor of Khost, and other local politicians, and voice their opinions. Every jirga in every part of the country was greeted the same way, thousands of people risked traveling the IED strewn roads to gather in what makes a tempting target for the Taliban, so that they can take part in forming and advancing democracy and capitalism in their nation. How many Americans would ride a donkey down off a mountain and walk across hell’s half acre to attend a townhall meeting? Of those few, how many would suffer the trip only to beg for a handout or a job, or better benefits and pay from their unskilled, minimum wage job so they can make a career out of it without the investment of time and (God Forbid!) effort to improve their own circumstances?
I witnessed citizens of Afghanistan driving AK-47 and RPG armed Taliban out of their villages with sticks and rocks because they were unwilling to surrender their new found liberty. Is every village willing to risk life and limb in such a fashion? Of course not, but a great many Americans today can’t find the intestinal fortitude to fight back while our Constitution is ignored and defiled, while our tax dollars and our children’s and grandchildren’s future earnings are stolen by the majority party and redistributed in the form of entitlements to their chosen supporters, aka victims?
“The Iranian Revolution 2.0 is hardly the result of anything happening in Iraq, but is instead the product of 30 years of theocratic oppression, and a young demographic that wants to join the rest of the world.”
While you allow your BDS to utterly deny the effect of two burgeoning democracies on Iran’s borders, I am not so narrow minded as to discount the effect of 30 years of tyranny, or the effects of technology, the internet, twitter, you-tube, etc. These undoubtedly play a huge part in the current situation in Iran. Look at the effect 5 months of increasing tyranny have had on American conservatives. You possess clarity I do not, your immeasurable font of experience springs forth from MSNBC, CBS, the NY Times… My clarity is muddied by memories of an old woman’s tear filled eyes and broken English as she thanked me for freeing her family from Saddam’s regime, the strong hand shakes of dozens of men able to provide for their families thanks to the jobs they had in the concrete plant that USAID money built, the smile on a child’s face as they put on the shoes and coat that we helped deliver after generous Americans donated them.
“Bush set back American foreign policy by decades with his middle-school swagger and boasting.”
History will weigh foreign policy as can we…
“The Polish nation, speaking through Solidarity, has provided one of the brightest, bravest moments of modern history. The people of Poland are giving us an imperishable example of courage and devotion to the values of freedom in the face of relentless opposition. Left to themselves, the Polish people would enjoy a new birth of freedom. But there are those who oppose the idea of freedom, who are intolerant of national independence, and hostile to the European values of democracy and the rule of law.
Two Decembers ago, freedom was lost in Afghanistan; this Christmas, it’s at stake in Poland. But the torch of liberty is hot. It warms those who hold it high. It burns those who try to extinguish it.” Reagan
“It’s not productive given the history of U.S.-Iranian relations to be seen as meddling.” Obama
“General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization: Come here to this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” Reagan
“I think it’s important that, moving forward, whatever investigations take place are done in a way that is not resulting in bloodshed and is not resulting in people being stifled in expressing their views,” Obama
“…(O)ne thing that the world can count on is that we will not allow Israel to be crushed.” GW Bush
“I think that the democratic process, free speech, the ability of people to peacefully dissent — all of those are universal values and need to be respected, and whenever I see violence perpetrated on people who are peacefully dissenting, and whenever the American people see that, I think they are rightfully troubled.” Obama
Which way does your scale tip?
“If you love wealth more than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest of freedom, depart from us in peace. We ask not your counsel nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you. May your chains rest lightly upon you and may posterity forget that you were our countrymen.”—Samuel Adams