March 18, 2013 |
Ten years after the invasion of Iraq, it's clear who lost the war that followed. But it may be years before we know if anyone won. Topping the loser's columns, of course, is Saddam Hussein, with the world better for it. Yet, despite his demise, America is also the loser. The goals the Bush administration set for the war were never achievable, and the costs were greater than most Americans realize, not just in lives and money squandered but in reputation lost. Iraqis were freed from Hussein, but a botched American occupation led to a civil war that killed more than 100,000 civilians and forced millions to flee the country.
May 23, 2011 |
Herewith President Obama's Middle East speech last week, annotated: "It will be the policy of the United States to promote reform across the region, and to support transitions to democracy. " With this, Obama openly, unreservedly, and without a trace of irony or self-reflection adopts the Bush Doctrine, which made the spread of democracy the key U.S. objective in the Middle East. " Too many leaders in the region tried to direct their people's grievances elsewhere.
March 29, 2011
By Steve Hallock Despite his compelling humanitarian argument, President Obama's decision to engage American forces in Libya's civil war is a troubling continuation of a long, escalating series of U.S. military efforts carried out under presidential fiat. From Bosnia to Haiti, these excursions have often been undertaken with laudable, compassionate, and democratic goals. The trouble is that since World War II, they have bypassed the constitutional requirement that Congress, not the president, make the decision to go to war. Members of Congress from both parties have criticized the Libya engagement, which has proceeded without any formal congressional approval.
September 24, 2008
READER MIKE Franklin asked why Joe Biden is qualified to be vice president just because of his long tenure in the Senate and said that "career politicians are disconnected from the real world. " I'd have to ask Mr. Franklin the same of John McCain, who has been in the Senate for 22 years and is so disconnected from the real world that he admits that computers - you know, those things that pretty much run the world - are a mystery to him. Mr. Franklin also wrote that he'd "take a fresh face any day" - would that be a reference to Gov. Palin, who doesn't even know what the Bush doctrine is?
June 16, 2008
More than half the members of the U.S. House of Representatives voted last week to send articles of impeachment against President Bush to the lower chamber's Judiciary Committee. Of course, most of the lawmakers considered their "yes" vote the equivalent of sending Dumbo to the elephant graveyard, from which it would never be seen or heard again. The articles' author, U.S. Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D., Ohio), has been written off derisively, both within and outside the halls of Congress, for having launched the impeachment process.
March 22, 2006 |
If you were wondering what the White House has learned from three years of Iraq errors, the past week won't offer much comfort. President Bush has been giving speeches assuring Americans that things are going well, with a few speed bumps. Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld says that "the terrorists . . . are losing. " But the most unsettling event was the unveiling of a new national security strategy that reaffirms the 2002 Bush doctrine of preemptive war. Preemptive war, you may recall, is the concept that America will attack its enemies - whether state or terrorist group - before they attack us, especially if we think they may use weapons of mass destruction.
March 17, 2006 |
It's time for some straight talk about John McCain. He isn't a moderate. He's much less of a maverick than you'd think. And he isn't the straight talker he claims to be. McCain's reputation as a moderate may be based on his former opposition to the Bush tax cuts. In 2001 he declared, "I cannot in good conscience support a tax cut in which so many of the benefits go to the most fortunate among us. " But now - at a time of huge budget deficits and an expensive war, when the case against tax cuts for the rich is even stronger - McCain is happy to shower benefits on the most fortunate.
August 5, 2005 |
Paul Krugman is a columnist for the New York Times The campaign for Social Security privatization has degenerated into farce. The "global war on terrorism" has been downgraded to the "global struggle against violent extremism" (pronounced "gee-save"), which is just embarrassing. Baghdad is a nightmare, Basra is a militia-run theocracy, and officials are talking about withdrawing troops from Iraq next year (just in time for the U.S. midterm elections). On the other hand, the administration is crowing about its success in passing the long-stalled energy bill, the highway bill and CAFTA, the free-trade agreement with Central America.
January 21, 2005
The cherished democratic ideal of freedom took on a grim cast in President Bush's inaugural address yesterday. While the President didn't come right out and threaten more military invasions in far-off lands, it was hard to mistake his combative message to virtually any undemocratic nation on the planet. Embrace liberty, he warned, or face the terrible swift sword of the most powerful democracy on Earth. "This is not primarily the task of arms," the President said. But the expansion of liberty is "the urgent requirement of our nation's security, and the calling of our time.
November 16, 2004
WHEN Colin Powell became secretary of State four years ago, he already had his own "doctrine" named for him. The "Powell Doctrine," developed before the first Iraq war, held that military force should be used only if there is a threat to national security, the level of force should be overwhelming, and the action should have strong public support and a clear exit strategy. As Colin Powell leaves government - his resignation was announced yesterday - his country is pursuing a policy in Iraq that is close to the exact opposite of the "Powell Doctrine.