Many conservative pundits have begun marching to the steady drumbeat for another war. Who will it be? Syria, or Iran, or both? Whoever it will be, it won’t be places where actual terrorists are and the reasons will be certainly be all wrong. One reason, one dishonestly asserted in the absence of any weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, is that democratization of the Middle East will end terrorism. So, Victor Hanson argues that the US should support democracy in the Middle East (by something more forceful than words). A noble goal, but the first reason he offers for it is this:
>First, Islamic terrorism has a global reach. Even just a few operatives are able to destroy the foundations of Western air travel, finance and civic trust.
Whatever this has to do with democracy he does not say. No amount of democracy (say that enjoyed by the citizens of Great Britain) can stop a few crazies from blowing up some trains and buses and planes. Besides, the causes of Islamic terrorism, as far as we have been able to tell, don’t have a whole lot to do with their lack of a representative forms of government. And it’s a gross oversimplification to lump all of Islamic terrorism (read any terrorism in the Middle East) into one category. Consider, for instance, the difference between Sunni and Shiite, for starters, then add the difference between the locally directed terrorist versus the one with global interests.
And to complete the revision of history, he claims that
>In truth, fostering democracy in Afghanistan and Iraq was not our first, but last choice. What the U.S. is trying to do in the Middle East is costly, easily made fun of and unappreciated. But constitutional government is one course that might someday free Middle Easterners from kidnappings, suicide bombers and dictators in sunglasses.
It is easy to make fun of what’s going on in Iraq and Afghanistan, especially since it has done so little to free *anyone*–least of all the Iraqi and the Afghanis–from kidnappings and suicide bombers.