Monday, March 20, 2006

Intolerable Remarks 

[Update: I've fixed the link to the GSB study within the post, which really merits a reading if time permits (another link here) ... it is extremely damaging to those who would side with the realist containment agenda as the more fiscally, or morally, sound course of action]

... I think we are going to succeed in Iraq. I think the evidence is overwhelming. I think Ted Kennedy has been wrong from the very beginning. He's the last man I'd go to for guidance in terms of how we should conduct U.S. national security policy.

Vice President Cheney delivered that strong worded slap on Face the Nation Sunday, responding to a quote from Senator Ted Kennedy. The sort of party rhetoric being spouted by Kennedy is nothing new, but it has become all too common within the media circles, being increasingly portrayed as common sentiment and decreasingly questioned on the grounds of its merit and moral validity. The original Kennedy quote, which consists of the usual rambling about an incompetent administration and a mistaken war, is interesting only because it is so shameless. Kennedy obviously feels that his remarks are so mainstream, his views so common, that he can repeat the same cliched euphemisms without batting an eyelid.
It is clearer than ever that Iraq was a war we never should have fought. The administration has been dangerously incompetent. And its Iraq policy is not worthy of the sacrifice of our men and women in uniform.

A war that never should have been fought? Not the first time we've heard this, but I wonder on what empirical grounds he makes the claim. Surely not economic ones, since the cost of containment is roughly equal in terms of dollars as compared to the cost of war, a recent study by the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business found. More importantly, the study found that "the war will lead to large improvements in the economic well-being of most Iraqis relative to their prospects under the policy of containment." And most damning to Mr. Kennedy's claim is the projected loss of life, based on the historical record of the regime between 1991 and 2003, of 10,000 to 30,000 Iraqis a year, resulting in the startling claim by the authors that "a continuation of the containment policy could be expected to result in another 200,000 to 600,000 dead Iraqis." Perhaps the Senator wishes to say that the cost of freeing the Iraqi people from a regime that was responsible for the death of hundreds of thousands of its citizens, while at the same time securing the United States and its allies against future aggression from a known terrorist sponsor is not a worthy use of American assets. That seems to be what he means by the Iraq policy being "not worthy of the sacrifice of our men and women in uniform."

Senator Kennedy's remarks are grossly inaccurate, and heinously offensive. To claim that the lives and freedom of millions of Iraqis, and the continued security of the United States, is not worth our effort is to reveal a true disregard for the wellbeing of our country, and Iraq, and the noble sacrifice of the men and women who fight for it. To further insult the armed forces by decrying their sacrifice, one which every man and woman who has died volunteered to make, reveals a blatant disrespect for the very lives of the soldiers he pretends to speak for. And to pretend that the world, and Iraq, would be better off had we done not acted is nothing short of self-imposed delusion, and a denial very facts and events that brought us to the brink of war to begin with.

Andrew, the link to that study by the GSB is broken. Can you fix it, I'd really like to read that study. Also, nice post=)
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