Friday, July 14, 2006

Digby on the Bushite Doctrine

How a country like the US can support freedom and democracy, and what tools should be used, is a valid question. There has always been the problem of a mighty superpower seeming to throw its weight around having the effect of creating a certain human resistence to its influence. Nobody has an easy answer to that question, but most liberals believe that the best, if not perfect, hope lies in international law and institutions.

But, honestly, anybody who thought that it was a good idea to illegally (and virtually unilaterally) invade and occupy a middle eastern nation that had not attacked anyone, in the name of freedom and democracy was nuts. (To compound the error by thinking that you could use torture and humiliation in the process and still somehow be seen as a valiant liberator is simply mind-boggling.) If there is ever a case in human events in which you cannot adopt an "ends justify the means" philosophy it's in the realm of spreading liberal values. The minute you do it, you have defeated yourself.

This was not a difficult thing to understand for those who actually believe in liberal values. It seems, however, to still elude those who for the last decade, at least, have been swinging wildly from one position to the other without even pausing for breath.

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