Saturday, March 6, 2010
A Sober Point on Iraq
Real Clear Politics picks up a sober and acute response to Jonah Goldberg's ex post facto defense of the Iraq war. Of course any reasonable comment on the Iraq invasion must consider the seeming inevitability of Iraq coming undone with or without American military action. Saddam Hussein held that artificial - see British colonialism - country together by force, and I see no reason to believe either one of his sons would have been chillingly competent enough to hold the respective ethnic regions together once he inevitably passed. In all likelihood, Iran would have exerted its presence in the Shia south of the country and the Kurds would have continued their campaign for an independent Kurdistan in the north of the country, with conflict over oil-rich Kirkuk ongoing with the Sunni heartland. The point is well taken though: if the United States is going to claim credit for a nascent democracy in Iraq, it must take responsibility for the tens of thousands who have lost their lives because of the decision to invade. We really cannot have one without the other. The moral ambiguity is crushing.