I jotted down a few of my musings on our Islamic outreach escapades. The Bush administration certainly made many missteps in the years following September 11, 2001. Historians in the future will expend many pages on evaluating the decision to topple Saddam. I supported it at the time based predominantly on two factors, one being an idealistic belief that has already been shown to be naive at best, delusional at worst. I thought the Arab world, beneath the veil of Islamic practices, yearned for more freedom and democratic institutions. So many intellectuals in West put forth this point and with our idealistic belief that the quest for freedom beats in the heart of every man, well, I wanted this to be true. Most assuredly a certain percentage do yearn for more freedom. However, our experience at toppling despots and trying to formulate a do-it-yourself democratic installation kit has created fragile, unstable governments in both Afghanistan and Iraq, which most likely won’t be able to stand on their own once we pull out. In Afghanistan we’re in the position of propping up corrupt Hamid Karzai, who beyond the edges of Kabul enjoys almost no support. Once we leave his government will collapse quickly. In Iraq competing factions leave a state in almost complete political paralysis, while Iran leans in waiting to sever the spine of the immobilized Iraqi state.
The second factor that led me to support Saddam’s ouster were the numerous reports about Saddam’s WMD. I believed Saddam was aggressively pursuing WMD. Despite the Colin Powell UN speech debacle, many reports of his WMD programs flitted across the news pages in the years following Desert Storm. Despite the dubious assertions of the likes of UN weapons inspector, Scott Ritter, I knew Saddam had pursued a WMD program from our Desert Storm experience. We blew-up Khamisiyah. Our military could verify that. Throughout the Clinton years, the farcical cat and mouse games continued with Saddam playing the UN and several of his European enablers, to thwart the UN sanctions and antagonize US policymakers. The sanctions, the no-fly zone and the breathtaking corruption of the UN all provide parts to the story of our decidedly difficult foreign policy in the region. The one missing piece to the Saddam puzzle I hope will be found once the dust settles in Syria is whether Saddam really did ship large portions of his WMD program to Syria or was this just another one of those desert spiders that grew in size and speed with each retelling . Time will tell.
I came across this well-written, well-argued piece in the Tracinski Report (here) titled, “Following From The Front“, which offers some new threads to the Benghazi story, our Libya policy, the state of our military preparedness, and the Obama administration’s complete and total lack of situational awareness of the events unfolding around them in the Mid-East, that I hadn’t seen before. The author presents a compelling case for why involvement in Syria, as Iran’s premiere client-state, is in our national interest and his logic is sound. The problem for me rests not on Syria, Iran, Russia or any of the other players in the region.
My problem with taking anymore action in the Mid-East lies with President Obama and his national security team. I don’t trust them. I don’t trust their judgment to make decisions that are in America’s best interest. The endless leaks, the radical politicization of the military on gender politics, PC generals, the sharia sensitivity push in the military and government, all these factors foster my distrust. Former US prosecutor, Andrew McCarthy, who successfully prosecuted the Blind Sheikh for the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, has written extensively at National Review (here), PJ Media (here) and in several books (here) on the Islamist threat to America. This past year added a new wrinkle on Hillary Clinton’s diplomatic face -Huma Abedin, Hillary’s always hovering Muslim Brotherhood connected aide, (here), which was quickly powdered over by the mainstream media cosmetic fixers. Those same reliable media fixers pulled out the heavy-duty cake foundation to plaster over the Benghazi pimple and it looks like no long-term political Proactiv follow-up treatment will be necessary. Washington has already moved on to fiscal cliff histrionics and set their sights on new gun control. With almost minute-by-minute updates on Madame Secretary’s blood clot today, well, alas no one will have the heart to force her to testify on Benghazi – it ain’t happenin’. She’ll step-down amid glowing press accounts about her stupendous record as Secretary of State and begin the fundraising efforts for her 2016 run.
American inaction allows the Iranians and Russians to exert a lot of influence in the region. It leaves Israel very vulnerable. It works against American interests in the world and diminishes our influence globally. And yet, with this CINC calling the shots, I would prefer he golf more in this second term and wander out into world affairs less. Yes, I know history drags the unwilling, but I pray the tailwinds don’t cast us into the midst of a global conflagration that requires action. In this Obama circus there’s no talented diplomatic tightrope walkers or national security acrobats, only a whole bunch of clowns.