now just a darn minute
Obviously, I haven't been blogging much about the day-to-day conduct of the war. I certainly had no intention of pouncing on every little setback--they're bound to occur in wartime--as evidence that the war is "failing." I have little doubt that the US will prevail militarily. But this morning's WaPo, George Will's column goes a long way toward explaining my persistent skepticism.
[B]ecause this is a war of choice -- a wise choice, but a choice -- those who were eager for the choice to be made had an incentive to minimize expectations of inevitable unpleasantness.
...The president has put the country on a necessary but problematic path favored by conservatives. Now conservatives should explain why conservatism, with its wariness about uncontrollable contingencies and unintended consequences, suggests that the coming triumphs will be more difficult and less complete than we wish.
This war has, as I've said repeatedly, been sold from day one with a series of shifting rationales, dubious assertions and, ah, misinformation that swiftly convinced many who were predisposed to agree with Bush but left a number of skeptics--and much of the world--with profound doubts. But nearly as consistent as the assertions that Iraq posed some sort of threat was the implication--however contradictory--that the military action would inexorably adhere to the best-case scenarios. Hardly surprising--Bush has been inordinately releuctant to discuss the possible costs, even and especially financial, of his obsession, although once the shooting started--and more importantly, Congressional support of his tax cut seemed assured--he was able to come up with an estimate quickly enough.
(continued in the next post)