Kommentar

George Bush ser kjørt ut. John Kerry har momentum. Vel så mye fordi negative sidene ved Bush-administrasjonens strategi er blitt tydeligere.

Thomas L. Freedman griper fatt i dem i dag når han snakker om den forfeilede holdningen til kampen om Irak:

It can’t be won with an «idealism» that is selfish, greedy, arrogant, incapable of self-criticism and believing that all that matters is our will and power and nothing else.

Administrasjonen won’t come clean, innrømme feil og appellere til folks offervilje og idealisme. Det er deres store feil: At de aldri har bedt det amerikanske folk om å ofre noe, forklart at krigen mot terror også vil kreve noe av dem.

Den indre front er vel så viktig som den ytre. Istedet pøses det penger ut på Homeland Security.

But the great mistake of the neocons and this administration,» notes my friend George Packer, the New Yorker writer who has done great reporting from Iraq, «was to think that America could fight this war alone. We could not win the cold war without our democratic allies abroad, and without real sacrifice at home, and we cannot win this one without both either. This is a huge, long-term war of ideas that needs our public’s participation and that of our allies. But this administration has never summoned that.»

En liten del av befolkningen bærer alle byrdene ved krigen. Resten lever ubekymret. Friedman var på Superbowl og fant showet i pausen usmakelig.

Dagen etter var Friedman hos Centcom i Florida. Det er sentralkommandoen som styrer krigen: Friedman kan ikke få fullrost disse menneskene. USA fortjener dem ikke.

Yet their morale, their professionalism and their belief in this mission are still amazingly high. If you want the antidote to all the creeps in that Super Bowl show, spend a day at Centcom. I promise you, you will walk away with one overriding feeling: We do not deserve these people. They are so much better than the country and the administration they are fighting for. We owe them so much more respect, so much more sacrifice of our own and so much better leadership from a Bush team whose real sin is not hyping Saddam’s threat, but sending Americans to remove him without a plan for the morning after.

Friedman svinger blikket til kurderne og bomben i Arbil. Den viste hva denne krigen handler om:

All I have to do is see what happened to the Kurds the other day — this proud mountain people who have built a nice little democracy and free market in northern Iraq, only to have it suicide-bombed by Islamists — to be reminded that this is a just war. It is a war of the forces of tolerance, pluralism and decency against the forces of intolerance, bigotry and religious fascism.

The Home Team