Monday, December 4, 2006
Personal Aside: The Rumsfeld Memo Verifies What Billy Kristol Has Always Been Saying.
The Rumsfeld memo released Sunday that argued to President Bush for a change in strategy was a shocker to me because until then I never really bought the idea propagated by Bill Kristol that Rummy was a flexible, pragmatic dovish secretary: his iron jawed visage and blunt words had taken me in. I should have known better since I knew him fairly well earlier. Rumsfeld was never, ever an ideologue but a very flexible pragmatist. Kristol, smarter than I on this one (and maybe on many other things) always argued that Rumsfeld was a key to the failure in Iraq by poor planning, yes, but also an inability to commit sufficient troops. In this memo, it is clear that Kristol has been right all along. Which means that Rumsfeld was not the kind of guy you would want to have by your side when, like Custer, youre facing a lot of Indians coming at you ala the Democrats and the mainstream media.
The longer I look at this Iraq thing the more concerned I am that we must win this thingnot start slow, phased withdrawals. To withdraw means something of a Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr. mentality: he who arranged the assassination of Diem. To withdraw means we must retreat from Iraq and vamoose: leaving those Iraqis, Shiites, Sunnis, Kurds and others who believed in us to the tender mercies of chaos. That we must betray our allies in Lebanon and scotch the idea of an independent Lebanon so as to gain Syrias support for our pulling out of Iraq. If thats realism, Ill take vanilla. Its retreat and capitulation. What would Winston Churchill do at this hour? I know what this sounds like: it sounds like the only two people who are acceptable thus far for president are either Gingrich or McCain and of the two, McCain is more nearly electable. Where Romney and Brownback are be at this juncture we dont know. I guess we all know what Barack Obama would do, dont we?