VDH: Heartbreak aside, Iraq progresses – Victor Davis Hanson on the unintended consequences of Sept. 11
Here’s a sample:
The United States is no longer the predictable enforcer of the status quo (“just export oil and drive out communists”). Rather, we are pledging blood and treasure for popular reform in a death struggle with Islamic fascism to offer a humane alternative to corrupt sheiks, generals and kings.
So what started out in Afghanistan and Iraq as regional efforts to stop rogue nations from aiding terrorists and threatening Americans and their allies has evolved into a wider conflict upon which literally the fate of hundreds of millions rests. Somehow two skyscrapers disintegrating in New York are linked with women lining up for elections in Afghanistan and brave Iraqis registering to vote amid gunfire in Baghdad – as the ripples of Sept. 11 continue to shake the Middle East.
Such is the case in war where unintended consequences follow, both good and bad. Lincoln promised the Civil War was to save the Union, and then in early 1863 announced it was really to eliminate slavery.
The Anglo-American alliance fought World War II to free Eastern Europe from Hitler – only to ensure that it was enslaved by our “ally,” Josef Stalin and his Red Army. An isolationist America without a military was attacked in late 1941 and ended up the century’s global peacekeeper just four years later.
The suicide bombs and explosions that go off daily in Iraq are not proof that Americans are losing the Sunni Triangle, but rather that thousands of secular and religious fascists are desperate not to lose their entire Middle East.