The Victor's Rights, Right or Wrong

Russell Turpin deafbox at
Sat Apr 19 02:32:27 PDT 2003

>And if you get the same despotism 20 years from now you still have given 
>them 20 years
>to try for something else.

This is where I think you are wrong. What comes
next, and what comes after that in reaction,
will carry the US imprint and signature. If it
turns into something as bad or worse than the
Ba'ath regime, not only will it be bad on that
account, but it will tarnish the US and limit
our foreign policy in the area. I have enough
belief in the importance of our nation and our
ability to do good on the foreign stage to
think that that is another increment of
misfortune, not only for us, but for the
Iraqis. One can always make blundering look
good by posing a bad result of the status quo
as the only alternative. But that's not the
only alternative. And whether our current
action turns out to be a blunder or not
depends very much on what comes next, not
simply on our military victory. Our failure
to maintain order in Iraq, and our attempt to
install an unwelcome, outside resistance
leader, do not bode well for the how we wage
the peace.

>In the case of the Shah [measured by US interests] it certainly looks 
>(today) like the results with the Shah were better than the probably ones 
>without him --> even factoring in the current Mullocracy.

Iran is a casebook study of how support for a
bad regime empowers opposition based on
political philosophies contrary to the west,
and leads to a government that is inimical to
the US for decades after. Had we not installed
the Shah, Iran very likely would be both more
liberal and friendlier to the US than it is.
Instead, it is the third listing in Bush's
axis of evil. AND WE MADE IT THAT WAY. I
think that's a very poor trade for the business
advantages we gained under the Shah.

>>Or when they supported Saddam in the 80s.

John answers:
>You believe things would have been better if Iran had conquered Iraq?

That's an example of trying to severe past
foreign policy from its consequence. Our own
blundering gave rise to Iran's mullahcracy,
pushing us into the choice between letting it
conquer Iraq, or supporting a madman like
Saddam Hussein. Viewed in isolation, that
choice gives excuse to our support for Saddam.
Viewed in the context of a situation that the
US created, it's blowback, pure and simple.
BECAUSE of our support for the Shah, we later
had to let the mullahs conquer Iraq or support
Saddam. Because we supported Saddam, he later
was able to conquer Kuwait, leading to Gulf
War I, sanctions, etc. Are you accounting all
of this as consequence of support for the
Shah? I didn't think so. Neither would the
rightwingers of your ilk who supported the
Shah and US policy in the 70s. History is
very convenient when it is cut into little
chunks by a jingoistic ideology.

MSN 8 helps eliminate e-mail viruses. Get 2 months FREE*.

More information about the FoRK mailing list