Saturday, April 02, 2011

Interventionists on a roll

In the making of public policy those who stand together in a united front generally prevail over those who are diffident and divided--even when the numbers would suggest otherwise. A familiar example is the Israel Lobby, which continues to show extraordinary potency.

If I recall correctly, Michelangelo included a Libyan Sibyl in his Sistine Chapel frescoes. Two groups are not at all sibylline in their Libyan imperative: the neocons and the liberal interventionists. The former consist of the usual suspect together with Senators McCain and Lieberman. One might have expected liberal Democrats to be more skeptical, but a recent study shows that after Obama's election their support for the antiwar cause evaporated. It seems that liberal critics, who achieved some prominence a few years ago, are only opposed to Republican wars. Currently, Hillary Clinton is heading this faction, but it has a long history of intransigent interventionism going back to the time of Woodrow Wilson.

Both groups--the neocons and the neo-Wilsonians--fervently believe that we must continue to act as the world's policeman. Even where this activity consists only of the appallingly named surgical strikes, it costs a lot of dough--money we do not have. One might have thought the the Tea Partyites, with their concern about our spending, would be opposed, but they don't seem to be, at least not very much. For their part, libertarians are divided, though Judge Andrew Napolitano (whose TV show is a must-see) has been putting up a good fight against our war in Libya. The hard left, what remains of it, is also divided

It is my sad duty to report that the views of that grinning jackal, Bill Kristol, who thinks that Obama has joined the neocons, are telling (see, eg, his /

Some are speaking of George W. Bush's third term. With good reason, I fear.

POSTSCRIPT. Yesterday Andrew Sullivan caustically noted:

"The important thing in Washington . . . is to maintain total amnesia about the recent past for fear it might impede people's careers and credibility. Remember: this is a town where the advocates for the Iraq fiasco have paid no political price and ignored every significant lesson. This is a town where Paul Wolfowitz is as respected as ever, where Bill Kristol remains influential, and where no senior former officials [read: war criminals--WRD] ever acknowledge a single mistake (see the autobiographies of Bush and Rumsfeld)."

The resurfacing of the horrendous Paul Wolfowitz ("Man is Wolfowitz to man.") is one the most disturbing things that has occurred in recent days.



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