Myths of war

Victor Davis Hanson:

"Myth #1: America turned off its allies. According to John Kerry, due to inept American diplomacy and unilateral arrogance, the United States failed to get the Europeans and the U.N. on board for the war in Iraq. Thus, unlike in Afghanistan, we find ourselves alone.

"In fact, there are only about 4,500-5,500 NATO troops in Afghanistan right now. The United States and its Anglo allies routed the Taliban by themselves. NATO contingents in Afghanistan are not commensurate with either the size or the wealth of Europe.

"There are far more Coalition troops in Iraq presently than in Afghanistan. As in the Balkans, NATO and EU troops will arrive only when the United States has achieved victory and provided security. The same goes for the U.N., which did nothing in Serbia and Rwanda, but watched thousands being butchered under its nose. It fled from Iraq after its first losses.


"Myth #2: Democracy cannot be implemented by force. This is a very popular canard now. The myth is often floated by Middle Eastern intellectuals and American leftists — precisely those who for a half-century damned the United States for its support of anti-Communist authoritarians.

"Now that their dreams of strong U.S. advocacy for consensual government have been realized, they are panicking at that sudden nightmare — terrified that their fides, their careers, indeed their entire boutique personas might be endangered by finding themselves on the same side of history as the United States. Worse, history really does suggest that democracy often follows only from force or its threat."

Read the whole thing.


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