Rhetoric vs. logic

President Bush is at it again. Not surprising, of course, he needs to defend his choices even if they were wrong ones. The latest example of faith leaping headlong over logic was from his 9/11 speeches reported here.

“We will not leave [Iraq] until this work is done. Whatever mistakes have been made in Iraq, the worst mistake would be to think that if we pulled out, the terrorists would leave us alone,” Mr. Bush said. “They will not leave us alone. They will follow us. The safety of America depends on the outcome of the battle in the streets of Baghdad.”

The illogic is the idea that war in Iraq brings peace to the US. This is such patent nonsense it’s hard to credit it even being said.  Not only is the war in Iraq hardening Islamic hearts towards America (and Britain, among others), it’s also failing to create peace in that country, let alone ours. And Iraq is not in fact the only, or the main place where Al Quaeda is active. The focus on Iraq smacks of a personal vendetta. If peace and safety for Americans is really the goal, let’s see a much more balanced approach:

  • defend against terror wherever it’s found
  • build alliances to increase communication and understanding
  • use aid as a compassionate tool to reduce inequality across the globe
  • don’t use the terror word as a label for people we don’t like – keep it for those who truly fit the bill.

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