Will The Promoters of the War Go to Iraq?

January 8, 2007 at 10:51 am | Posted in American politics, conservatives, George W Bush, Iraq, King George, Military, neo-conservatives, Republicans, Thoughts, War, War on Terror | 3 Comments

Glen Greenwald asks why war proponents, such as Fred Kagan of the American Enterprise Institute (and all his buddies there of course), don’t heed the call they make? According to their report, America is in need of men to fight in Iraq:

Victory in Iraq is still possible at an acceptable level of effort. We must adopt a new approach to the war and implement it quickly and decisively. . . . This approach requires a national commitment to victory in Iraq:
. . .

The president must request a substantial increase in ground forces end strength. This increase is vital to sustaining the morale of the combat forces by ensuring that relief is on the way. The president must issue a personal call for young Americans to volunteer to fight in the decisive conflict of this generation.

The decisive conflict of this generation. According to them, this is vital to our national security. So……..why don’t you see THEM going to Iraq to fight? Why don’t you see Bush’s family going to Iraq to fight? After all, Bush’s father fought in World War II, the last “decisive conflict of [that] generation?”

Glen Greenwald states:

But the current situation is completely different. Even according to the war’s remaining advocates — particularly those who want to escalate in Iraq — there is a serious and harmful shortage of willing volunteers to fight in Iraq and to enable a more aggressive application of U.S. military force generally. So we do now have a situation where those who are cheering on more war and escalation really are needed not at the computer screen but on the battlefield, in combat. And their refusal to fight is actually impeding the plans of those on whom the President is relying for “Victory.”

As a result, it is now morally indefensible for those who are physically able to do so to advocate a “surge,” or even ongoing war in Iraq, without either volunteering to fight or offering a good reason why they are not doing so. One of the war’s key architects is sending out a desperate plea for volunteers in order to enable the U.S. to achieve “Victory” in Iraq. How can those who believe in the premise and cheer it on — all the while depicting themselves as strong and resolute — possibly justify not taking the necessary action to enable the U.S. to “win”?

He then adds one final point:

Following these premises, it seems one could construct a univerally applicable (and self-evidently reasonable) definition of “cowardice” as follows:

A “coward” is someone who (a) fails to fight (b) in a war they consider to be necessary and just (c) notwithstanding their country’s need for more fighters and (d) in the absence of a unique and compelling excuse for doing so.

Note Jonah Goldberg, one of the strongest supporters of the war on why HE is not fighting in Iraq. Note his excuse:

As for why my sorry a** isn’t in the kill zone, lots of people think this is a searingly pertinent question. No answer I could give — I’m 35 years old, my family couldn’t afford the lost income, I have a baby daughter, my a** is, er, sorry, are a few — ever seem to suffice. But this chicken-hawk nonsense is something that’s been batted around too many times to get into again here. What I do think is interesting is that out of the thousands upon thousands of emails I’ve gotten from people in the military over the years, maybe a dozen have ever asked this question. Invariably, it’s anti-war leftists who believe that their personally defined notions of hypocrisy trump any argument and any position. Meanwhile, the military guys have been overwhelmingly friendly and very often grateful for the support we offer around here.

So in other words, for the most “decisive conflict of this generation,” war proponents themselves can’t fight because they’ve got to make money for their wife and kids…I’m sorry…let me get this straight. A young man, just married with a kid born while he is away isn’t making quite the same sacrifice as a 35 year old who also has a wife and kid?

Is this really the most decisive conflict of this generation? If it is, why are not war supporters the first ones to sign up? Why do they sit back in front of their computers, fat and happy, while others die for them?

It must not really be the most decisive conflict of this generation. Our enemy today must not be worse than Hitler and Stalin combined? Our enemy today must not be stronger than Nazi Germany, right? For that battle, millions of Americans were called to duty in one form or another, and nearly half a million died.

If it isn’t the most decisive conflict of this generation, why call it as such?


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  1. It this current conflict in Iraq is truely believed to be a war on terrorism ( I know many people that say the situation in Iraq has nothing to do with terrorism) then it is the most decisive conflict of this generation. If Iraq isn’t equated to terrorism then the conflict is just a blip in history.

    That being said, there will always be people who stand on the side and “support” a cause without getting too “personal”.

  2. If it isn’t the most decisive conflict of this generation, why call it as such?

    I keep waiting to see that the Bush twins have enlisted in “the most decisive conflict”, but so far to no avail.

    I think the President would agree that “it’s hard work” keeping track all of the various “spins” that have been put out by the administration on this war. Fortunately, as masters of Doublethink, they’re always able to pull it off, at least within the Republican ranks.

  3. Mark,

    well said. Their plan is really to run out the clock on their administration now, and let the next administration (most likely a Democratic president) deal with the horrors he created. And since it will most likely be a Democratic president, he’ll gleefully blame them for not finishing the work.

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