It’s time to get back to basics. And by basics, I mean getting back to First Term W., back to when the president’s strategy to defend and protect the United States was to take military action against terrorists and the nations that sponsor them. By unfortunate contrast, the security strategy of Second Term W. is best described as bringing universal suffrage to these same terrorists and the nations that sponsor them. Getting back to Bush basics requires a re-reckoning of what and why we fight — and, just as important, for what and why we don’t fight.
Do we fight to spread democracy? Or do we fight to stop jihad? Far better to fight to stop jihad. Second Term W. believes democratic principles will neutralize jihad — a.k.a. “extremism” in the strangled parlance of political correctness. It may not be polite to notice, but the nasty reality is that jihad is neutralizing democratic principles. The fact the administration must reckon with is that the concept of human rights — the ideals of liberty and justice for all — isn’t a natural by-product of majority rule. Islamic terrorists still support Islamic terrorism, even when, as in the Palestinian Authority or Lebanon, they are democratically elected; and sharia erodes human rights even when, as in Afghanistan and likely Iraq, it is implicitly mandated by a constitution.
It’s time for the administration to consider the possibility that the democratic process alone — constitutions, legislatures, ballot boxes — doesn’t result in Jeffersonian democracy. Such a re-reckoning doesn’t mean abandoning Iraq. But it does mean reordering our goals. Forget the Iraqi constitution for now. More important is a single-minded effort to eradicate the death squads that destabilize the country and threaten to exhaust our staying power. Getting back to Bush basics, that means taking action against the nations that sponsor these terrorists: Iran, for instance.
Read the rest.