When Ron Paul uttered his rationale for the 9/11 attack on the U.S. (“They attack us because we’ve been over there; we’ve been bombing Iraq for 10 years.”) it may have woke up some Americans to the possibility that our country has done some very ill-considered things in the name of ‘making the world a better place.’ Some people, however, refuse to wake up! Look, for instance, at Rudy Giuliani’s reaction to Ron Paul’s statement: ” I don’t think I’ve heard that before, and I’ve heard some pretty absurd explanations for September 11th.” And, as unlikely as it seems, that may be the truth! Who, in Giuliani’s circle of friends and supporters, would even consider that saving the world from itself was not the correct thing to do and who among them would ever believe that someone could hate you and attack you for doing the right thing?
As I see it, Ron Paul is at least partially right; one of the basic principles of how the world works is: Every “good” act will be perceived as bad by someone!; but he is wrong to completely ignore the social, political and religious aspects of that hatred. In any event, creating an enemy is not necessarily a bad thing, but if you create enemies you must be prepared to deal with them.
Keep in mind that some things MUST be done in the name of survival and America’s involvement in the Middle-East just may have been one of those things. No one outside the ‘circle of power’ in the White House knows for sure but I’ve always assumed that we (the U.S. Government) had a very sound, strategic, survival-related reason for our active involvement in Middle-Eastern politics and I also assume that one day, when some dead politician’s memoirs are published, we will find out what that reason REALLY was. You can be sure, however, that whatever the reason we went into Iraq, we didn’t go into Iraq with a clear understanding of the consequences (the cost and the number of U.S. casualties).
Now Forget What You Just Read! It’s Not Relevant!
What IS . . . IS!
Today, it doesn’t matter WHY we got involved in the Middle-Eastern mess, all that matters is that WE ARE THERE and we have to take a next step.
Pick Your Poison!
In the very unlikely event that Ron Paul became president in 2009, assuming he sticks to his current ‘script,’ we will probably see a massive troop withdrawal from around the world. It is not likely we will go completely ‘isolationist. i.e., close all overseas military bases and completely abandon close allies, but you can be sure we will be out of the Middle-East and other war zones.
If one of the leading Democrats takes office in 2009 the result will be pretty much the same except that our withdrawal of troops will be limited, at least initially, to Iraq.
If one of the Republican front-runners becomes president we may stay in Iraq until the Iraqi government and military are strong enough to survive without us or, depending on which Republican wins, we may see a similar scenario as we would see under the Democrats.
Personally, I believe that, for our own safety and survival, the radical Islamist movement must be destroyed — IF we can do that without fighting them in Iraq, we must do it; IF it takes another five or ten years to do it, we must do it; IF we can do it diplomatically, without open warfare, we must do it — I’m not a military tactician but I know that however it can be done it MUST be done, simply because we cannot coexist with people who feel that they have an edict from their God to destroy everyone who does not worship as they do and we MUST elect a president that understands that!!
While picking your poison however, don’t forget that the United States has other very serious problems besides the Middle-East. We have a government that is spending OUR money at an alarming rate; an income tax system that is too large, too complex and too inefficient; government regulations that strangle the free-market; existing and proposed legislation that puts the government smack in the middle of our private lives and personal business; and, of course, a still-unimpeded invasion of illegal immigrants who are, according to current plans, going to be allowed to continue draining our economy and destroying our culture.
Which of the current crop of candidates for President is likely to correct some or most of these domestic problems and still focus on the major international threat to our safety?
If the election was tomorrow, I would have to say that Ron Paul had the best chance of meeting that challenge . . . but I’m glad the election isn’t tomorrow . . . that I still have nearly 18 months to pick my own brand of poison.
Links about Ron Paul
Houston Chronicle: Lake Jackson’s Paul stirs GOP presidential race
Free-Market News Network: Could Ron Paul Win in New Hampshire?
From the blogosphere:
Buttle’s World: Ron Paul Experiment
House of Chin: Ron Paul Lovefest