Wednesday, August 27, 2008

On Liberal Hawks

There's an interesting post on the hopes of liberal hawks that, once Obama gets elected, they'll have more power in his new administration than folks would think.

Unfortunately, I don't think that's going to happen. The Democrats have moved far too much to the left over the last eight years, beginning with their 2000 standard-bearer Al Gore making a complete 180 degree turn from his anti-Saddam efforts throughout the 1990s as Vice President (see this from 1992!), to his later apologizing to the Saudis for how bad we in the U.S. have been since 9/11. Gore went from a staunch foe of Arab despots to one who apologized to them on bended knee -- all because of the Bush Derangement Syndrome that infected him and far too many in my party.

This movement to the left is why Barack Obama is the nominee of the Democratic Party this year, and not Hillary Clinton. Everyone has had to bend to the new dominance exercised by the types -- John Kerry and John Edwards, for example, both shucked their tough guy stances as soon as they lost the 2004 election, and moved to renounce their previous "we'll fight the war better than Bush will!" stance in favor of "leave Iraq now, and we never should have been there!"

This is not to say that Bush handled Iraq competently -- he hasn't, and if a Democratic President managed a war as poorly as he did from 2003-2007, the Republicans would have turned on him and at least attempted his impeachment. Just see how they demanded and got Defense Secretary Les Aspin's scalp in 1993 simply for the loss of 19 Army Rangers in Somalia!

But Bush, for all his incompetence, finally managed to come around to the Surge that John McCain had championed since around summer 2003, and much more importantly to the brilliant change in tactics General Petraeus implemented to accompany the rather small increase in troop numbers.

I'd love to see liberal hawks come back to being at the heart of Democratic foreign policy, but it's not going to happen in a Obama Administration. Rather, I think the only chance they have of a comeback is in the event of McCain proving victorious. In that event, maybe, just maybe, the Blue Dog conservative Democrats in Congress will be able to work across party lines with President McCain.

I look forward to that possibility, obviously, since I am an outcast from my own party until that time.

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