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August 9, 2006

One down, many to go

Posted by Phil on August 9, 2006 12:15 PM

There are many reasons for Joe Lieberman's fall, his support for the war in Iraq being perhaps first among equals. His supporters in the party he's supposed to oppose will continue to attempt to portray his defeat as a victory for angry, hateful, partisan, yet curiously limp-wristed liberal appeasers who lack the gumption to defend themselves and instead want to draw the shades and curl up with some herbal tea. This is horseshit. What happened to Joe Lieberman isn't a sign that the Democratic Party is retreating into some "weak on defense" caricature. It's a sign that angry, partisan, liberal Democrats are serious about defending America.

To be “strong on national security” does not mean supporting the misconceived and incompetently executed policies of the Bush administration. American security in years to come will depend, in fact, on undoing this government’s grave mistakes, which have weakened this country’s military posture and undermined support for us around the world. Terrorism experts across the spectrum, from conservative Republican to liberal Democrat, agree that the “struggle against violent extremism” has suffered from the foolish decision to invade and occupy Iraq.

Since the Bush administration declared war on a limitless concept--"terror"--and let our specific attacker--bin Laden--remain at large, then let's judge his war on that score. Since September 2001, have any of the Bush administration's actions done anything to reduce the terror in the world? It seems impossible to answer "yes," and there's plenty of evidence that it has actually created more. Even after almost five years of unfettered "war on terror," Bush's most fervent supporters still believe--seem desperate to believe, want us all to believe--that our enemies are still lurking. And no doubt they are. So how can Bush still have supporters? How can they still support a man who has, even with all the power he commands, not only failed to do what he set out to do, but has actually, demonstrably, made things worse? Aren't they serious about defending America? Do they not know how to win? Do they believe it's impossible to win? Is it possible they don't want to win?

There is a war going on, but it is not between opposing tribes or religious delusions. It is between moderates and fundamentalists. It's time for the frightened moderates of the world to realize that the fundamentalists--American and Arab, Israeli and Hizbullah, Christian and Muslim--are consistently pushing towards the same goal: World War III. Listen to their rhetoric: They all want the same thing. Is it a coincidence that terrorist actions have given America and Israel the excuse to do EXACTLY what they wanted to do? Is it a coincidence that America since 9/11 and Israel in the past month have done EXACTLY what the terrorists wanted them to do? Why do these groups in supposed mortal conflict keep giving each other EXACTLY what they want?

Fundamentalists of every stripe want violence, because violence creates fear, and frightened people can be controlled. It's time for moderates, liberals, progressives--whatever you want to call us--to shed our fear, take control, and take back our future. We need to reach across national boundaries and defend our world against fundamentalists, be they Christian, Muslim, or Zionist. They lie when they tell their people that it's either their way or Doomsday. Their way is Doomsday.

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