July 24, 2007


In Iraq, liberals flip on genocide: In the 1990s, they argued for humanitarian foreign intervention where there was little U.S. interest. (Los Angeles Times, July 24, 2007)

Barack Obama says preventing genocide isn't a good enough reason to stay in Iraq.

"By that argument you would have 300,000 troops in the Congo right now -- where millions have been slaughtered as a consequence of ethnic strife -- which we haven't done," he told the Associated Press. "We would be deploying unilaterally and occupying the Sudan, which we haven't done. Those of us who care about Darfur don't think it would be a good idea."

It's worth at least pointing out a key difference between the potential genocide in Iraq and the heart-wrenching slaughters in Congo and Sudan: The latter aren't our fault. But if genocide unfolds in Iraq after American troops depart, it would be hard to argue that we weren't at least partly to blame. Yes, the mass murder would have more immediate authors than the United States of America, but we would undeniably be responsible, at least in part, for giving a green light to genocide. Obama offers precisely that green light in his proposed Iraq War De-escalation Act.

Actually, the key difference that needs to be pointed out is that they aren't holding Democrats like Senator Obama responsible for the position that Saddam's actual genocides were none of our business.

Posted by Orrin Judd at July 24, 2007 7:58 AM

Infantile fatuousness.

We have responsibilities and interests. When these are advanced by the suppression of genocide, that is a very good work. When the genocide affects populations in regions of no geopolitical consequence, we do not ride abroad looking for dragons to slay.

We all know our country's history: there is no need to list all the times we have done well by doing good.

Effendi Baraka Hussein Obama is correct in his obsevation, but wrong in his conclusion. We are slow to rescue the African victims of genocide, but not because they are black, but because they do not occupy key terrain or strategic resources.

Posted by: Lou Gots at July 24, 2007 8:53 AM

We only do Good, though it's sold to the Realists as well.

Posted by: oj at July 24, 2007 7:42 PM