In the Arena

Now that I have your attention

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I love it! First day of Swampitude and the left-wing blogosphere–which is overpopulated by illiberal leftists and reactionary progressives–is already attacking me: 24 mostly mingy comments about my Left Behind post, many of which seem to be steaming off a post by Greg Sargent, who writes a blog called The Horse’s…Mouth.
The illiberal left just hates it when I point out that the Democratic Party’s naivete on national security–and the left wing tendency to assume every U.S. military action abroad is criminal–just aren’t very helpful electorally. The fact that I’ve been opposed to the Iraq war ever since this 2002 article in Slate just makes it all the more aggravating. But it’s possible to have been against the war and to hope for the best in Iraq. I’d bet that the overwhelming majority of Americans who now oppose the war are praying for a turn for the better in Iraq. Listening to the leftists, though, it’s easy to assume that they are rooting for an American failure.
And so a challenge to those who slagged me in their comments. Can you honestly say the following:

Even though I disagree with this escalation, I am hoping that General Petraeus succeeds in calming down Baghdad.

Does the thought even cross your mind? As for me, it’s easy–I’ve been rooting for U.S. success ever since the invasion because, after the overpowering arrogance and stupidity that led to this disaster, we owe some peace and stability to the Iraqis and the region. For the record, I’m outraged Bush is ignoring the election results and the reality on the ground in Iraq. I think he is sending more young American lives into an impossible situation. I am fairly certain that Bush will wallow amongst our worst presidents for getting us into this mess. But I hope events prove me wrong. I don’t even care if Bush gets credit for the “victory” and smirks all the way back to Texas. –joe klein

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