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May 24, 2004

Flinty Moore

Posted by Phil on May 24, 2004 11:15 PM

I admire the filmmaking of Michael Moore. But give him a mic or a keyb, and he can be counted on to go a good three to five steps over the line. He's excitable, that's all, but he makes it hard to defend him, and easy for people like Jim Lileks, who helpfully brought this to the attention of his readers, to slander and dismiss Moore and anyone they can brand as his ilk, and anything any of us says, ever.

So, what'd he say?

The Iraqis who have risen up against the occupation are not "insurgents" or "terrorists" or "The Enemy." They are the REVOLUTION, the Minutemen, and their numbers will grow--and they will win.


I oppose the U.N. or anyone else risking the lives of their citizens to extract us from our debacle. I'm sorry, but the majority of Americans supported this war once it began and, sadly, that majority must now sacrifice their children until enough blood has been let that maybe--just maybe--God and the Iraqi people will forgive us in the end.

It's not that I don't see his point about the Iraqi insurgents. Whatever one might think or know (in my case, not much) about their past or their vision for the future, I just don't think you can call people fighting soldiers "terrorists." Of course, there are terrorists there, bombing civilians, high-ranking gov't officials and the like--and there are low-rent thugs and hoodlums, too, kidnapping, raping, marauding. It's a big, wonderful melting pot!

But still, I see Moore's point. And he's not saying we should equate the insurgents with the Minutemen. I think most liberal arguments about Iraq are generally prefixed with "as far as the Iraqis are concerned," because, well, that's what liberals do: we see how the other side sees things and we think about that. We don't just stamp our feet and say, "But this is the way they should see it. And if they don't, we'll bomb them back to the stone age."

As for whether "they" will win, well, we thought we won a year ago, but it's been a bad couple months, so who can say? I am uncomfortable, though, as I think all Americans ought to be a year after the dispersal of the people we actually went to war on, with our self-declared right to declare, ourselves, just who is the Enemy in a country not our own.

But that hokum about how most Americans supported the war and now must pay with their children's blood until things have been set right--that's specious nonsense. Blood doesn't set things right of itself--in fact, it's people who believe that who have caused all the trouble--and saying we deserve to have the war go on so more of us die is only going to make more Iraqis die, too. Anything that prolongs the vicious cycle that we most certainly set in motion does nothing but forestall for everyone the arrival of anything like peace, justice, or forgiveness.

Plus, talk like that only encourages the crackpots who already believe that Moore sacrifices white American babies on an alter in his dirt cellar and prays for our subjugation before the fiery-eyed sons of Allah. Which anyone who watches his movies knows isn't the case. Michael Moore loves America and Americans. He just gets so apoplectic watching lying greedheads jack us around that he goes a little off his nut. Plus he likes attention.

But pay no attention to Mr. Moore's excesses. No doubt about it--mistakes were made. We got ourselves into Iraq, and we could use some help finding the exit.