Friday, March 24, 2006

A Climate of Fear

Now it's a news story -- Belarus protest ends in police action -- and now I don't find it on the NY Time's front webpage. Go figure.

The reporter Chivers again says the election was "rigged," which is a word I take to mean ballots were incorrectly counted, but again his only defense of this word is somewhat vague:

International observers have said the vote was neither free nor fair. The United States has condemned both Mr. Lukashenko and the election and called for a new vote, saying the campaign was conducted by a dictator in a climate of fear.

"Climate of fear." Where do I remember that? Before the War in Iraq, in those final few days, I remember the White House trotting out every possible scenario of doom and gloom, even one that had Saddam, always Saddam, flying model airplanes or some such nonsense over Florida from Cuba or some silly thing, all this so he could dump anthrax or Weapons of Mass Destruction on an unsuspecting populace of retirees and tax payers. Model airplanes, people. That's what got us banging the drums in the March to Baghdad. And Rummy still hasn't even found one little remote-controled plane he can show the American people.

The thing that never made sense to me is, we won't as a nation be told by anyone else what we're going to do. We will act unilaterally. We won't let anyone tell us what to do. But when explaining this unilateral action, especially after no WMDs are found, the insurgency flares and everything is going so wrong, the first thing we will say is, Well, our intelligence may have been flawed (never wrong, just flawed), but remember, this was the same intelligence the Germans had, and the French, and the British. So, to recap: we'll go it alone, but when things go wrong, we'll blame your intelligence. If you're about personal responsibility, I wonder how you overlook that. All you will find in DC these days is the logic of a thirteen year-old boy who wants to explain away his mistakes, no matter the holes in logic.