Thursday, March 27, 2008

Echoes Of History

"They're trying to build a modern democracy on the rubble of three decades of tyranny, in a region of the world that has been hostile to freedom. And they're doing it while under assault from one of history's most brutal terrorist networks," President Pinhead said. "When it takes time for Iraqis to reach agreement, it is not foot-dragging, as one senator described it during Congress' two-week Easter recess. It is a revolutionary undertaking that requires great courage."
Prepare yourself for another flurry of comparisons between Iraqi politicians and the founding fathers of these United States. While the process, "building a democracy", sounds familiar, it's the circumstances that are still a bit skewed. First of all, it's my memory that the Declaration of Independence was the document that got our whole Revolution underway, and it took years of war to come to a settlement with our former Empire. That's when the work on our constitution began. There weren't bullets in the air while all of that debate and discussion took place. It took six years from the surrender of the British for a document to be completed, but that was before there was such a thing as word processing, before cut and paste. Why not just take the one we've got and do a global replace with "Iraq" for "United States" and be done with it?
Meanwhile, another main difference between then and now is this: The French didn't hang around looking over our shoulder with an occupying force while we got to work forging our democracy. The flowering of Iraqi democracy is, at best, taking place under laboratory conditions. And not the clean, careful labs of white coats and precise calculations, but rather the scary explosive mad-scientist type place where scary mutations are fabricated. This is no desert rose.
"No matter what shortcomings these critics diagnose, their prescription is always the same: retreat," Pinhead said, referring to the Democrats calls for timetables or troop withdrawals. "They claim that our strategic interest is elsewhere and if we would just get out of Iraq, we could focus on the battles that really matter." Like getting a copy of Microsoft Word into the hands of the Iraqi Parliament, for example.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Just make sure they're not using Vista.