Friday, November 24, 2006

Dubya's Last Chance

Victor Davis Hanson has fired a shot across the bow of the Bush White House that, given they'll be facing an impeachment inquiry and a drive to defund the GWOT next year, the Bushies dare not ignore:

HH: Victor Davis Hanson, if you had a chance to visit with the President tonight, what would you be telling him?

VDH: Don't give up. Don't weaken. Don't hesitate. Don't pause. Do not cut a deal with those two governments. They're killing American soldiers through surrogates in Iraq. They're trying to destablize Lebanon like they did in the 1980's. They're the source of most of the evil that's now causing us problems from Afghanistan to Iraq. And this idea that you're going to bring James Baker back, and that team back who gave us everything from Iran-Contra to jobs, jobs, jobs as the only reason we're going to go into the Middle East, to flank the Jews. I could go on, but it's a very sensitive point with me.

I think a lot of us, Hugh, stood by this Administration through thick and thin when the paleocons turned on them, when the liberal hawks turned on them, when the neocons are starting to bail. But my God, if you're going to go into the Middle East, and put 130,000 Americans in harm's way, fighting for democracy, and then you turn around and you appease those two governments who are killing people, I don't think a lot of us are going to stand for that.

HH: Is this an Archduke Ferdinand moment with the assassination of Gemayel?

VDH: I think it may be. I really do. I think that Syria realizes that as soon as they saw that the United States was going to cease pressure on them, it was time to go in and start killing non-Shia politicians, reporters especially. They've killed journalists, they've killed's not just this Gemayel. It's not just a Christian politician. They've been doing this for two years, killing, systematically, any critics. And they sense that they get a green light from us when we pull back. And I think it should be a wake up call for the United States, that when you go to war in Afghanistan and Iraq, you don't go to war in a half measure. You either go to war or you don't go to war. And we're in a war in Iraq, and we're in war with, as the President said, Islamic-facism, and autocracy and dictatorship, and there's no better examples than Iran and Syria. [emphases added]

It's a heady thing to be echoed by a historian of VDH's calibre. Looks like I've got my work cut out to remain your "humble" proprietor.

But in all seriousness, the stakes couldn't be set forth any clearer than VDH does here. The GOP lost Congress not because of earmarks or pork-barrel spending or Jack Abramoff; they lost Congress because a majority of voters questioned whether we're even trying to win in Iraq, and therefore in the larger GWOT of which Iraq has been proclaimed (by both sides) as the "central front. It's just gotten too similar to Vietnam in the sense that we are limiting ourselves, we're conceding "privileged sanctuaries" to our enemies from which they can wage assymmetrical war against us with utter impunity for as long as it takes to undermine another "democracy project" and the domestic public support for the effort.

The problem isn't that President Bush hasn't made, or ceased making, an effective case for being actively engaged in the war; it's that his strategy never called for being FULLY engaged in the war to begin with. Afghanistan and Iraq had to be followed up with campaigns for regime-change in Iran and Syria as well. Only by defeating and destroying ALL the "terror masters" can this war be won. And if George W. Bush now fades back into his oafish father's hapless shadow, invites in all of Pappy's cynically incompetent old poops to take all he has managed to accomplish in the Middle East and flush it down the crapper - in essence, beating the newly-elected Defeatocrat majority to the self-directed punch - he may deserve the impeachment he gets, and when it comes there may be nobody left to defend him against it.

Only the spectre of putting Dick Cheney in the Oval Office may make the Donk conspirators hestitate. Which is why I think they'll do an impeachment "blue plate special" and try to take out Bush AND Cheney in tandem. That may be what it takes to reel back in pro-Bush diehards like VDH.

Even better would be sudden military action against Iran (with Israel taking out Syria, as VDH also suggests). It'd be the perfect GDub retort to the mid-term election results as well as a long-belated move forward in the war effort.

Besides, what would the Democrats be able to do about it? Impeach him?