Hear, Hear., Continued

Andrew Sullivan, whose work I greatly admire, joins the better-late-than-never chorus:

What [bin Laden] wanted, it seems obvious now, was central relevance to the power shifts in the Middle East, and U.S. troops in lands they could never understand and never fully win over. History has proved him right on that. Even the finest soldiers in the world, with the finest leadership in the world, were not capable of miracles…

The fiscal costs of our actions are one reason we find ourselves today in a lost, jobless, debt-driven decade. About $2.6 trillion was spent in a decade of war—approaching some of the most ambitious spending cuts now being proposed…

It’s time we fessed up: the madmen of 9/11 were not the Soviets; they were not the Nazis. If we had seen them in that calm perspective a decade ago, we would be living in a very different America today…A bankrupted America that tortured innocents and disregarded its own Constitution is barely recognizable as America.

Sullivan also humbly gives a hat tip to the few Americans, of whom I am among, who never succumbed to vengeful impulses and supported the invasion of Iraq:

Yes, I know many were not fooled. I tip my hat to them. I am ashamed my own panic overwhelmed my own judgment. But that is an explanation, not an excuse: I cannot imagine any other circumstance in which I would simply trust the government, period. But, as fear dominated my being, trust I did—as did a majority of Americans who supported the war that handed bin Laden exactly what he wanted.

I have been wary of reminding people that I never fell victim to the Iraq nonsense in the first place, because 1.) it, however true, turns people off, and 2.) energy that I spend on bitterness about the past is energy I don’t have to spend on improving the future.  But it really is healing to see, for the first time, that act of decency from a former Iraq supporter.

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