10 Nov 2006

Ann Althouse is Depressed

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She’s not exactly a hard-core Republican partisan, but Ann Althouse writes:

I’m depressed about the election…

It’s the failure of Americans to support the war. It’s the folding and crumpling because things didn’t go well enough and the way we conspicuously displayed that to our enemies. They’re going to use that information…

What I’m concerned about is national security and, consequently, the way the election was fought and is being interpreted. I’m upset because I think we have sent a terrible message to our enemies: Just hang on long enough and continue to inflict some damage, and the Americans will lose heart and give up. You barely need anything at all. You might not be able to hijack a plane with a box cutter anymore, but you can take back a country — a country we conquered with overwhelming military power — merely by mercilessly and endlessly setting off small bombs in your own town day after day.

How much harder it becomes ever to fight and win a war again. Only pacifists and isolationists should feel good about the way this election was won.

Who can blame her?

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Dominique R. Poirier

Well, nonetheless, we are going to see what’s next from now on. Criticizing when not in command is always the easy part. Whatever we may say, argument, pretend, even with circumstanced reports, is just talk and not action. We make our voice twice louder than what reasonableness recommends just in order to collecting the attention we think we deserve. If we made a mistake, or said a stupidity, like John Kerry did about soldiery, for example, it will not give rise to dire consequences, and so, it will be soon forgotten.

But things are suddenly different when, finally, we get this power to influence the course of events we were looking for since so long. We suddenly get aware that what we say, and so what we do, truly influences other’s life. In the case of the matter at hand, it influences the destiny, not only of our whole country, but of other countries whose people’s life and freedom dramatically depend. It goes far beyond a press communiqué, or a nice speech, isn’t it?

Most of us experienced that, at least once in our life. Perhaps not at the scale of a powerful country, of course; but always at a scale realistic and important enough to make us afraid of the possible irreversible – and fatale, perhaps – decision we are about to take.

When this happens, we get suddenly calmer, wiser, and unusually thoughtful; for what we say is no longer mere criticism and no longer mere talk.

Something important and real bears on our shoulders, then.

Opportunists and ambitious people who have gained more power, now, may still restrict their acts to verbal criticism, attack, or minor issues relevant to domestic policy, because the responsibility of their acts will be still diluted by the effect of collective decision-making. But we may assume that the others will come to realize the possible negative influence of their decision on the long term when it come to more serious matters.

Withdrawing from Iraq tomorrow? Like that? Sure? No regret? No afterthoughts?

Really?

Wow! Such unexpected thoughtlessness.

I may be naïve, or too confident, but I am impatient to see that.

“Fashionable reveries about universalism are overwhelmed by geopolitical realities,” said once Henry Kissinger.



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