Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Road Not Taken

My journeys through cyberspace took me this morning to this, perhaps the most insightful essay I've read about our (the American) situation today in Iraq.

Below I've provided a portion of that essay, very slightly abridged. The emphasis is all mine. I'll discuss the author and provide a link to the full essay below.

There is nothing noble about war. There is nothing uplifting or heroic about fighting one. Individual acts of heroism notwithstanding, war ultimately represents a failure of some kind. For the United States, sleepwalking during the 1990’s while al-Qaeda gathered strength and states like Iraq trained terrorists with utter impunity, it was a failure of intelligence, of diplomacy, of will, and finally a failure of imagination that led to the catastrophe of 9/11.

There is nothing moral about war except its quick and decisive ending. And whether or not you believe Iraq was a war of choice or whether you think it was thrust upon us by the exigencies of the times,
the fact of the matter is we either fight to win – and win as quickly as circumstances allow – or we admit defeat and leave, accepting the consequences of our folly while holding harmless the young men and women who sacrificed much in service to the government and the people.

I say to you that whether you believe this war to be moral or immoral, the actions of the Democratic leadership in deliberately drawing out our withdrawal because they lack the political courage to take a stand on what they believe and cut off all funding for the Iraq War to bring the troops home now constitutes a towering act of moral cowardice rarely seen in Congress. Perhaps the debates over the Dyers Anti-Lynching Bill of 1918 would find an echo in today’s craven attempts by Democrats at avoiding responsibility for the moral consequences of their loudly proclaimed position on the war.

Instead of leadership, we get glitz and smoke and mirrors. Instead of a sober, serious approach to this issue of life and death, war and peace, we get the circus of a meaningless, degrading resolution that states opposition to sending more troops. And instead of bold, clear cut, up or down votes on whether we should stay or go, it appears we are going to get the tactics of the saboteur and assassin; cowardly end runs that seek to undermine the military in ways that even an enemy of this country could only dream.

President Bush, the lamest of lame ducks, whose approval ratings are in the low 30’s, apparently still frightens cats, little children, and the House Democratic leadership.

Was this written by a conservative or a liberal? The answer is really obvious. IT DOESN'T MATTER.

We are at a fork in the road of the Iraq misadventure. There is NO MIDDLE PATH. We must either fully support President Bush and the "surge" strategy or we MUST force the nation to a rapid withdraw from Iraq.

Robert Frost wrote, in 1920, this most famous of all poems:

The Road Not Taken

TWO roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

The blogosphere author of the essay I've reprinted at the top of the page wrote one more thought I'll share with you:

As House Democrats prepare to open debate on the Iraq war resolution, we have further evidence that when it comes to having the courage of their convictions, the House Democratic leadership has feet of clay.

A "slow bleed strategy?" Whose blood? I daresay it won’t be any of the Democratic leadership.

No doubt the last final entry reveals the author as a conservative firebrand, and, indeed it is. But does it matter? I can't imagine any progerssive or liberal disagreeing with his thoughts and analysis.

Two roads have diverged in a yellow wood, we must choose a path. There is no path down the middle.

Please link over to and read the entire essay by
Rick Moran.




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