complete moral bankruptcy of the War Party is coming out of
the closet, as they say, with the emergence of the strategic
thinking behind the war in Iraq. To those Americans who see
that there was no connection between Saddam Hussein and Al
Qaeda, no weapons of mass destruction, no imminent danger,
the war is a mystery. As American casualties become a daily
routine, and Iraq slips into chaos, more and more Americans
want to know: What were they thinking?
but Andrew Sullivan
the confidential manner of a practiced sycophant, the British-born
writer, former editor of The New Republic, and George
Orwell wannabe, is so eager to show off his chumminess
with the powerful that he lets slip the following:
time before the Iraq war, I found myself musing out loud to
someone close to the inner circles of the Bush administration.
We were talking about the post-war scenario, something that
even then was a source of some worry even to gung-ho hawks
I voiced some worries about what might happen
if an occupied Iraq became a target for international terrorism.
Wouldn't U.S. soldiers become sitting ducks? What was to stop
al Qaeda using Iraq as a battleground in the war against the
what he said surprised me. If the terrorists leave us alone
in Iraq, fine, he said. But if they come and get us, even
better. Far more advantageous to fight terror using trained
soldiers in Iraq than trying to defend civilians in New York
or London. 'Think of it as a flytrap,' he ventured. Iraq would
not simply be a test-case for Muslim democracy; it would be
the first stage in a real and aggressive war against the terrorists
and their sponsors in Riyadh and Damascus and Tehran. Operation
Flytrap had been born."
U.S. soldiers as bait, "sitting ducks," as Sullivan puts it,
the strategy of the U.S. is to say, in effect, "Bring 'em on!"
So what if we lose a couple of hundred or a couple of thousand
GIs in the process of springing this clever little trap.
Baited with plenty of juicy young American troops, just waiting
to be picked off, Iraq will attract terrorists like a dead
carcass attracts flies. "Operation Flytrap" it's enough
to make any decent person gag. As opposed to Sullivan, who
extra beauty of this strategy is that it creates a target
for Islamist terrorists that is not Israel."
how I wish it were Sullivan and not some wide-eyed innocent
from Idaho patrolling the mean streets of Baghdad. Let Andy
take a bullet for Israel!
it really possible for anyone but a moral monster to praise
the "beauty" of a strategy that treats American soldiers like
sacrificial lambs, moving targets in a shooting gallery, totally
expendable? To say nothing of how it treats the Iraqis who
are discovering that the "liberation" of their country means
turning it into a charnel house. A more profoundly evil scheme
would be hard to imagine.
from its appalling immorality, "Operation Flytrap" won't
protect us from terrorism. Defense
Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says "We're killing, capturing
terrorists in Iraq which is a whale of a lot better than Boise."
But what would bring them to Boise to begin with is a desire
to avenge what happened to Baghdad, and, at least so far,
the U.S. government can't stop them from coming: if ABC
News can smuggle depleted uranium into the U.S., imagine
what horrors Al Qaeda could import to our shores. To think
that our strategy is to rile up this hornets' nest
is to realize the madness of our leaders.
the reality of the "Flytrap" strategy, it ought to be clear,
by now, why the biggest opponents
of the Iraq war are senior military officers,
To them, this is a truly
monstrous idea, one that makes a ghoulish mockery of everything
they have ever believed and fought for.
childlike innocence of evil, the complete absence of any moral
sense, prevents Rumsfeld and Sullivan from seeing themselves
as monstrous. In their own minds, they are legends: Sullivan
thinks he's Orwell, and who Rummy imagines himself to be
Napoleon? Caesar? God the Father? is more information than
I need to have. Suffice to say that they see themselves as
the Good Guys, idealists even, and they are genuinely shocked
when ordinary people (as opposed to those who inhabit the
Washington Beltway) express revulsion at their ideas. Sullivan
subsequently aired this theory on my blog, and received incredulous
responses. Readers chimed in with objections.Wouldn't that
mean essentially using U.S. soldiers as bait? Isn't this too
cynical and devious a strategy? Isn't there a limitless supply
of jihadists just longing to mix it up with the U.S. in a
terrain they know better than we do? What on earth are you
on earth, indeed.
a prime example of the Court
Intellectual, whose job it is to flatter and fawn over
the wit and wisdom of royal personages, Sullivan does a good
job of rationalizing the disaster that unfolded after our
"victory" in Iraq. It was all part of the plan, you see: Bush
isn't trying to pacify the country. His goal is, rather, to
"continue waging war against terrorism." The chaos is intentional.
As death comes knocking on the doors of the families of American
soldiers killed in the escalating conflict, Sullivan has the
nerve to write: "Opportunity knocks."
funny, in a morbidly unhealthy way, is that the clueless Sullivan
thinks the President ought to come out with this "Flytrap"
strategy in public:
some point, I'd argue, the president therefore has to make
this strategy more formal. He has to tell the American people
that more violence in Iraq may not in some circumstances be
a bad thing."
bad the White House is unlikely to take Sullivan's advice.
Dubbing the Iraq war "Operation Flytrap," and likening U.S.
soldiers to cockroach bait would sure help the American people
and the troops in the field see the true meaning of this
IN THE MARGIN
Ledeen called this strategy "creative destruction," in his
book, The Terror Masters, and his bold espousal of
a profoundly evil idea is perhaps the chief characteristic
of that infamous faction known as the neocons. They seem to revel in
their own bloodlust. For example, neocon Max
Boot, who bemoaned the low level of casualties
in the Afghan war. Presumably the significantly higher
casualty rate in Iraq has somewhat assuaged him.
of Ledeen, the deranged intemperance
of the man is a sight to behold. In response to a speech by
Rep. Ron Paul (R-Texas), entitled "We've Been Neoconned,"
he went into hysterical fits in the pages of National Review
Online, and accused the noted libertarian congressman
of "distorting" his words. This is a typical neocon tactic:
accuse your enemies of crimes you yourself have committed,
even in the act of accusing them.
Paul cited Ledeen's "creative destruction" thesis exactly
as it appeared in The Terror Masters:
destruction is our middle name, both within our own society
and abroad. We tear down the old order every day, from business
to science, literature, art, architecture, and cinema to politics
and the law. Our enemies have always hated this whirlwind
of energy and creativity, which menaces their traditions (whatever
they may be) and shames them for their inability to keep pace.
Seeing America undo traditional societies, they fear us, for
they do not wish to be undone. They cannot feel secure so
long as we are there, for our very existence our existence,
not our politics threatens their legitimacy. They must
attack us in order to survive, just as we must destroy them
to advance our historic mission."
his barking bombast directed at Rep. Paul, however, Ledeen
weasels out of his own words, and changes the last sentence
'they must attack us in order to survive,' and, sooner or
later, we must confront them and, I hope and trust, defeat
them in order to advance our mission of spreading freedom."
accuses Rep. Paul of misquoting him, yet he slithers away
from his original meaning by revising his text to say "defeat"
instead of "destroy." The coward doesn't even have the backbone
to stand by what he actually wrote.
Ledeen is afraid of is what Sullivan doesn't have the sense
to see: that normal people are repulsed, instead of attracted,
to this callous cruelty. The sheer nastiness of the neocons
is what has many people, both right and left, utterly appalled.
They are horrified that a flock of bloodthirsty shrikes
has commandeered the nest in Washington, and they listen with
unease and growing disgust to the triumphant war cries
coming from that direction. Ledeen is trying to tone it down,
but the guilty secret of the neocons is out. They are moral
cretins, with no more sense of right and wrong than any of
the other crazed ideologues with a murderous
"historic mission," as Ledeen puts it and just
should embarrass Congressman Paul to publicly expose himself
as an ignoramus and a fool," rants Ledeen, but Ron Paul has
done nothing of the sort. Ledeen has exposed himself as a
liar, and a weenie and it isn't a pretty sight. He claims
not to advocate extending the Iraq war into Iran, but his
U.S.-directed and subsidized "political" warfare against Tehran
would lead to the introduction of U.S. troops as the inevitable
deus ex machina
of his "revolutionary" morality play.
riles Ledeen about Rep. Paul's speech is that it indicates
how widespread the neocon meme
has become. It's one thing to be denounced as a "neocon" in
the pages of Antiwar.com, and quite another to be so singled
out on the floor of Congress. The other day, my mailman,
whom I occasionally engage in political discussion, referred
to "the neocons" as if they were the incarnation of pure evil.
When the resentment gets that widespread, it's time
for Ledeen and his cohorts to watch out.
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