Blogs > Liberty and Power > Operation Perpetual Failure

Feb 11, 2004 3:31 pm

Operation Perpetual Failure

[cross-posted on In a Blog's Stead]

I have mixed feelings about Edmund Burke, who penned both some of the most pro-libertarian and some of the most anti-libertarian passages in English literature -- often within a few lines of one another. But his warning to Parliament in his 1775 speech On Conciliation With the American Colonies is equally good advice concerning the U.S. occupation of Iraq today:

The use of force alone is but temporary. It may subdue for a moment, but it does not remove the necessity of subduing again; and a nation is not governed which is perpetually to be conquered.
And for all those who, like Claude Rains in Casablanca, are"shocked! shocked!" to find there are no WMDs in Iraq after all, I recommend Charles Johnson's recent posts here and here.

The defenders of"Operation Iraqi Freedom" are labouring under a double modal burden: the task they set themselves was both unnecessary and impossible.

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