Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Bizarro Empire

Justin Raimondo, at antiwar.com

The Air Force has to show it is part of the solution in Iraq, whether or not it can actually play a significant positive role on the battlefield, because that is the road to increased pull on the Hill and in the White House, which means more funding. Within the Empire are all these little empires, competing for tax dollars, prestige, and political primacy, and it is this civil war – always being fought, albeit at various levels of intensity – that is the ultimate undoing of the imperial order.

It doesn't matter that air power exacerbates the problem in Iraq, rather than solving it. It doesn't matter that we're alienating ordinary Iraqis, who often are the victims of U.S. air raids; all that matters is that the Air Force's rivalry with the Army (and the Navy) requires air strikes. What determines our "strategy" is a shifting concatenation of competing agencies and political factions that meet on the battlefield of congressional committees and the higher councils of U.S. policymakers. The outcome of this war – the intra-bureaucratic turf war – determines the strategy and conduct of the external war. And that is the road to certain defeat.

and this dire warning:

America, having exhausted itself militarily, economically, and spiritually, will one day be found washed up on some foreign shore, a hapless Gulliver overrun by hordes of angry Lilliputians and bound by a thousand threads to their feuds. When the history of the American Empire is written, any fair and objective author will have to concur that it didn't have to turn out that way: if we choose the prerogatives of Empire over the ascetic ideals of our republican tradition, we go willingly to our doom.