Monday, March 29, 2004

Andrew Sullivan Vs. Reality

Sullivan on the Clarke Story:

I never believed that either the Clinton or the pre-9/11 Bush administration took al Qaeda seriously enough... But what matters now in a political year is how the Bushies responded afterwards; and, to my mind, they did about as good a job as possible. The way some people are now talking, you'd think the White House hadn't targeted Afghanistan and al Qaeda before Saddam. But they went to al Qaeda's base first, taking the war to the enemy patiently and determinedly - with enormous success first against the Taliban and then against Saddam. Millions are now liberated from unspeakable tyranny; reform is afoot in the Middle East; al Qaeda has been seriously wounded. Not a bad start.

How nice of you to construct such an buffoonish straw man, unfortunately for Mr. Sullivan, his real foe (Dick Clarke and his sympathizers) is a bit harder to knock down:

"U.S. special forces didn't get into the area where bin Laden was for two months, and we tried to have the Afghans do it. You know, basically the president botched the response to 9/11. He should have gone right after Afghanistan, right after bin Laden. And then he made the whole war on terrorism so much worse by invading Iraq."

That's a pretty serious (and in my view, accurate) charge, one that Andrew Sullivan isn't willing to answer, probably because he can't. Bush's "seriousness" about the War on Terrorism is the only real reason why he continues to stand by Bush and the Republicans and he apparently is unwilling to separate himself from them, his attempts at "objectivity" aside.


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