Once again, it is scary how much I agree with Pat Buchanan (“Wages of Empire,” Opinion, Feb. 23). The left should make its antiwar case on economic terms, not worrying about the people of Iraq. We should show that spending more than $200 billion on a war will ruin all of the most wonderful aspects of our great country and jeopardize democracy.
All empires end in a quagmire of wasteful war. A war will end the good life we have that allows us to travel through the country and the world in a free manner, without constant searches or in fear of personal attack.
Buchanan has flirted with Holocaust denial and espoused moral equivalence between Palestinian terrorism and Israel’s attempts to defend itself. Now he decries “Sharon and his Amen Corner” and “braying Beltway interventionists” purportedly for planning to target Iran, Syria or Libya after Iraq.
Yet Buchanan concedes that “Iran is building nuclear plants it does not need and mining uranium.” Iran, moreover, provably is the prime state sponsor of terrorism in the world. Syria occupies Lebanon and provides haven to the Iranian-backed Hezbollah, as well as Al Qaeda and other terrorist groups. A compelling case could be made that, behind his reflexive veneer of anti-Semitism, Buchanan’s opposition to action against these regimes places each and every American at great and enduring mortal risk.
Once again, Buchanan shows his courage and integrity in revealing, to those who still don’t want to see it, one of the most plausible reasons for this new, insane American war: to begin reshaping a Middle East tailor-made to let Israel pursue its own imperial designs.
While I have seldom, if ever, agreed with Buchanan on any subject on which he opined, I must confess to complete agreement with his thesis and explanation in his column.
The Bush Doctrine indeed belongs in the period of Manifest Destiny and not in the contemporary world of globalization, instant communication, weapons of mass destruction, smart bombs and terrorism. Empire is an outmoded and immoral concept, and our government should not be reinventing it at this crucial time.
Gunther H. Schiff