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Krauthammer: From Baghdad to Benghazi (The revolutions in the Middle East are exposing Ws critics)
National Review ^ | March 4, 2011 | Charles Krauthammer

Posted on 03/04/2011 5:03:02 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife

Several factors catalyzed the Arab spring. But the Bush Doctrine set the premise.

Voices around the world, from Europe to America to Libya, are calling for U.S. intervention to help bring down Moammar Qaddafi. Yet for bringing down Saddam Hussein, the U.S. has been denounced variously for aggression, deception, arrogance, and imperialism.

A strange moral inversion, considering that Saddam’s evil was an order of magnitude beyond Qaddafi’s. Qaddafi is a capricious killer; Saddam was systematic. Qaddafi was too unstable and crazy to begin to match the Baathist apparatus: a comprehensive national system of terror, torture, and mass murder, gassing entire villages to create what author Kanan Makiya called a Republic of Fear.

Moreover, that systemized brutality made Saddam immovable in a way that Qaddafi is not. Barely armed Libyans have already seized half the country on their own. Yet in Iraq, there was no chance of putting an end to the regime without the terrible swift sword (it took all of three weeks) of the United States.

No matter the hypocritical double standard. Now that revolutions are sweeping the Middle East and everyone is a convert to George W. Bush’s freedom agenda, it’s not just Iraq that has slid into the memory hole. Also forgotten is the once proudly proclaimed “realism” of years one and two of President Obama’s foreign policy — the “smart power” antidote to Bush’s alleged misty-eyed idealism.

It began on Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s first Asia trip, when she publicly played down human-rights concerns in China...............

(Excerpt) Read more at nationalreview.com ...


TOPICS: Editorial; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: bush; charleskrauthammer; freedom; krauthammer; middleeast; obama

1 posted on 03/04/2011 5:03:06 AM PST by Cincinatus' Wife
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
They ( media) always talk about the Obama Ciaro speech in reality it was the Condi Rice speech in 2005 that started the more towards democracy in the middle east.

The reason Obama is treading softly is he know this and people in Libya have had it with him and begging for Bush.

2 posted on 03/04/2011 5:13:30 AM PST by scooby321
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Mr. Obama has no foreign policy.

He also has no idea of the world outside of spending America into a deep, deep pit.

Here endeth the lesson.

-Rex


3 posted on 03/04/2011 5:18:17 AM PST by RexBeach (There is no such thing as a good tax.- Winston Churchill)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
Obama is an idiot. He has not done or accomplished anything positive in his time in office which represents his entire life. He is an idiot.
4 posted on 03/04/2011 5:18:45 AM PST by 240B (he is doing everything he said he wouldn't and not doing what he said he would)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Is Krauthammer saying we SHOULD intervene in Libya’s civil war? Is he saying we SHOULD foment revolution in China? Was Obama right to support the uprising in Egypt or not? What exactly is he saying? Should we topple every dictator? Did we invade Iraq to spread democracy, or to locate and confiscate WMD? Is there any action anywhere in the globe that a neoconservative considers not our business? Apparantly not.


5 posted on 03/04/2011 5:19:53 AM PST by Huck (Antifederalist Brutus was right!)
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To: scooby321
in reality it was the Condi Rice speech in 2005 that started the more towards democracy in the middle east.

lol

6 posted on 03/04/2011 5:21:01 AM PST by Huck (Antifederalist Brutus was right!)
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To: Huck
Is Krauthammer saying we SHOULD intervene in Libya’s civil war?

No, he's saying that critics of Bush are hypocrites.

7 posted on 03/04/2011 5:26:27 AM PST by TruthShallSetYouFree (Obamacare: Not just dreck. Unconstitutional dreck.)
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To: scooby321
Well said.

I thought it would take 10 years for the American Public to reevaluate GWB and his contribution to the establishment of democracy and freedom in the Middle East and elsewhere.

History will not be written by the radical left wing media but by true historians.

8 posted on 03/04/2011 5:27:30 AM PST by wmileo
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
I have heard people say that both France in the 1780s and Russia in the early 1900s were doing well, making changes, and having a growing middle class. Things were getting better -- but not getting better fast enough to please people, and that's why revolutions occurred.

I wonder if a case could be made that Bush raised expectations in the Middle East. Iraq was getting fixed. Afghanistan was getting fixed. Libya gave up its WMD, the Palestinians were imploding, Iran seemed on the verge of demonstrations. Clearly, the ME was moving in a good direction.

Then Obama came in, and all of a sudden there was no reason to expect help from the US. The bad guys started to get pats on the head, and the good guys lost their funding. The momentum slowed or stopped -- and since things were no longer moving fast enough, revolutions broke out all over the place.

9 posted on 03/04/2011 5:27:35 AM PST by ClearCase_guy ("I've got tiger blood. Dying is for fools." -- Charlie Sheen.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife
No matter the hypocritical double standard.

Wake up Chuck. The 3-faced taqiyyalike-talkin' totalitarian statist/collectivists of a feather always play it anyway they want anytime they want with amplification from their enablers. YOU could run this critique everday (going back to at least Vietnam) and direct your fire at many more specific individuals. Re-examine the enemy within. Just look at Barack's methods/tactics. Where have YOU been?

10 posted on 03/04/2011 5:27:41 AM PST by PGalt
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To: scooby321

maybe North Africa is having a Mint Tea Party moment.


11 posted on 03/04/2011 5:28:00 AM PST by magua
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To: Huck

Charles speaks too soon. People like him think we all consider democracy as being freedom. I am quite sure those people fighting Gaddafi would like nothing better than for us to shoulder the cost and blood for their democracy. After the dust settles, they will turn on us.

It is a habit.


12 posted on 03/04/2011 5:30:09 AM PST by dforest
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To: TruthShallSetYouFree

Are Iraq War critics saying we should invade Libya? I’ve heard talk of no-fly-zones, which we had in Iraq under Democrat regimes, and even those aren’t going anywhere without UN or NATO approval. Who is saying invade and occupy Libya, or Egypt, or Tunisia, or anywhere? I haven’t seen anyone proposing massive invasions and nation-building. Maybe I missed that.


13 posted on 03/04/2011 5:30:12 AM PST by Huck (Antifederalist Brutus was right!)
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To: wmileo
I thought it would take 10 years for the American Public to reevaluate GWB and his contribution to the establishment of democracy and freedom in the Middle East and elsewhere.

Well let's see. We invaded Iraq in 2003, right? So we can evaluate in him two more years. I'll get a head start and say the Iraq war still looks like a collossal waste.

14 posted on 03/04/2011 5:31:58 AM PST by Huck (Antifederalist Brutus was right!)
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To: indylindy

He’s just serving up neocon spin. Neocons love Empire, especially when someone else does all the fighting.


15 posted on 03/04/2011 5:32:57 AM PST by Huck (Antifederalist Brutus was right!)
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To: Huck

No. Krauthammer is saying that the one the main tenets of the Bush Doctrine is proving correct. That is, once the Arab world has democracy as alternative to dictatorship and jihad, they will choose democracy. This is one of the main factors that influenced his decision to oust Saddam.

The Dems argued that that the Muslims were incapable of democracy, that it was not in their culture, that they didn’t want it or need it. From day one, that sounded like non-sense to me. It reminded me of those old news clips of the racist whites saying, “blacks aren’t smart enough to learn to read.” Still, the notion that Muslims were not capable of democracy was so quickly embraced by the left I was stunned.

One more note. We did not invade Iraq to give them democracy. We invaded Iraq and Afghanistan for that matter because their wretched leaderships and violent politics were spilling into the West. This forced us to do what we did. And, it’s starting to seem like a very wise choice with each passing day, month, and year.


16 posted on 03/04/2011 5:33:03 AM PST by Mustangman (The GOP)
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To: indylindy

While they want to be rid of the despot, they still desire Sharia law. Not exactly democracy in my opinion.


17 posted on 03/04/2011 5:34:18 AM PST by 03A3
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To: Huck

My exact thoughts. Warring is fun as long as their own blood doesn’t spill.


18 posted on 03/04/2011 5:37:25 AM PST by dforest
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To: dennisw; Cachelot; Nix 2; veronica; Catspaw; knighthawk; Alouette; Optimist; weikel; Lent; GregB; ..
Middle East and terrorism, occasional political and Jewish issues Ping List. High Volume

If you’d like to be on or off, please FR mail me.

..................

19 posted on 03/04/2011 5:38:10 AM PST by SJackson (Normal people don't sit cross-legged on the floor and bang on drums, WI State Sen Glenn Grothman (R))
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To: 03A3

Democracy to them is which Mullah do we choose.

Of course, that could be our fate they way things are going.


20 posted on 03/04/2011 5:39:26 AM PST by dforest
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To: indylindy
After the dust settles, they will turn on us.

While the dust is settling they will set their traps while asking us for more money. Count on it.

21 posted on 03/04/2011 5:39:59 AM PST by paulycy (Islamo-Marxism is Evil.)
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To: RexBeach

Mr. Obama has no foreign policy.


Sadly, that is not true. His policy is vague and loose, but overall it is consistent. It is to apologize frequently, betray our loyal allies, compromise our sovereignty and generally make America weaker. Every now and then he will put on a show to give the appearance of action, but its just an illusion.


22 posted on 03/04/2011 5:40:07 AM PST by rbg81
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To: paulycy

Apparently John McCain is all ready to see to it that we open our already empty wallets with even more aid to Egypt.

*just shaking my head in disbelief*


23 posted on 03/04/2011 5:44:02 AM PST by dforest
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To: indylindy
Apparently John McCain is all ready to see to it that we open our already empty wallets with even more aid to Egypt.

Hillary wants us not to cut her budget so that she has more walking around money, too.

What is it about us being more than broke that they don't get?

You know, I could really get to hate these people given half a chance.

24 posted on 03/04/2011 5:51:22 AM PST by paulycy (Islamo-Marxism is Evil.)
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To: rbg81

Same difference.

Mr. Obama would rather play golf.


25 posted on 03/04/2011 5:54:46 AM PST by RexBeach (There is no such thing as a good tax.- Winston Churchill)
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To: 03A3
These riots are mostly about food shortages and unemployment.

Under a secular Western style government, they are required to become resourceful on their own, as well as advance Capitalism in order to prosper. They simply do not understand how this can work. Instead, they are ruled by fear and threats from a military or Theocratic Oligarchy.

Looking at every one of these countries, they all follow the same pattern. When they take down their current dictator, they quickly install another. They are just not comfortable under Dumbocracy. And their idea of “Freedom”, is having more than one Mosque to attend.

26 posted on 03/04/2011 6:07:36 AM PST by PSYCHO-FREEP (Patriotic by Proxy! (Cause I'm a nutcase and it's someone Else's' fault!....))
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To: 03A3

You are correct.

How quickly is forgotten the “moderate” Pakistani muslim governor who recently got assassinated because he publicly came out against stoning as a means of punishment for various crimes.

Any muslim espousing anything other than hard line Sharia law in these countries does not have long to live.

We need U.S. troops pulled out of the Middle East completely and repositioned on the U.S./Mexican border.

And we need Obama impeached for consorting with U.S. enemy #1 Felipe Calderon on the grounds of the U.S. White House while U.S. border patrol agents are forced by our own perverse federal government to shoot beanbags at Mexican cartel criminals who then return fire with AK-47’s they were gifted with by our own imbecilic BATF agents.

And we need idiots like Krauthammer and all the rest of the NWO country club apologists he appears on Fox News every night with, including BO’R to just shut the hell up and get the hell out of town.

None of them have any skin in the game and they run their phony mouths and do as they are told because Fox pays them lots of money to be good marionettes. Get wise America you are being lied to every minute of every day by these status quo network dummies.


27 posted on 03/04/2011 6:23:24 AM PST by 4Runner
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To: scooby321

It occurred to me that Obammy didn’t call for daffi to step down until the libyan protesters called out to Bush for help.

Interesting timing, isn’t it?


28 posted on 03/04/2011 6:23:34 AM PST by jacquej
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Those with sufficient operating brain cells understand Bush’s call for freedom provided some roots for the events in the ME and No. Africa.

However, the American sheeple — if they happen to lift their glazed eyes above the screens of their iPads or whatever their latest toy and view what actually is happening — will praise 0bama as the giver of freedom to the world. The MSM will instruct them so.

Sorry... I’m in a more cynical mood than usual today.


29 posted on 03/04/2011 6:47:48 AM PST by ScottinVA (The West needs to act NOW to aggressively treat its metastasizing islaminoma!)
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To: 4Runner
We need U.S. troops pulled out of the Middle East completely and repositioned on the U.S./Mexican border.

AND out of Germany.. AND out of the UK.

30 posted on 03/04/2011 6:49:42 AM PST by ScottinVA (The West needs to act NOW to aggressively treat its metastasizing islaminoma!)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

“were Egypt to be as politically developed in, say, a year as Iraq is today, we would think it a great success.”

I wouldn’t count on it Dr. Krauthammer. In human history at least 75% if not 90% of the time revolutions end with a greater tyranny in power than that they overthrew.

He’s stewing over the hypocrisy of O, Hillary, & the Left. What else is new???


31 posted on 03/04/2011 8:32:55 AM PST by AnalogReigns
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To: Mustangman

“the notion that Muslims were not capable of democracy was so quickly embraced by the left I was stunned.”

There are a heck of a lot of us on the RIGHT who believe that nations dominated by the dictatorship-glorifying-ideology of Islam, are not READY for liberty, and the freedom of a democratic republic. Even in our own history it took a very long time to move from limited monarchy to the representative democracy we have now. Arguably European monarchies too had more protections for their subjects 500 years ago... than most Arab countries have today.

There’s no racial element of this—which you’re right, the Left may have—rather its a cultural/religious/ideological issue. When vast majorities of a religion firmly believe (as they are taught)that execution is the proper remedy for leaving that religion (as polling indicates the vast majority of Muslims believe), freedom as we know it just is not possible—and makes “democracy” (majority rule) frankly dangerous for the minority.

A little known fact is the number of Christians that have FLED Iraq since its “democratization.” They actually felt SAFER from Islamists under the police state of Saddam than they do now. Something like HALF of the population of ancient Christian communities (over a million) have LEFT UNDER our watch...and these are groups which go back to New Testament times.

I think the long term effects of the Bush doctrine are yet to be seen. I will be surprised however if dictatorships do not dominate Islamic countries for generations to come.

After all Mohammed himself—and all his successors—were military dictators, and Islamic theocracy is an essential to the ideology of Islam.


32 posted on 03/04/2011 8:56:31 AM PST by AnalogReigns
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To: rbg81

“Sadly, that is not true. His policy is vague and loose, but overall it is consistent. It is to apologize frequently, betray our loyal allies, compromise our sovereignty and generally make America weaker. Every now and then he will put on a show to give the appearance of action, but its just an illusion.”

Very well put. You summed up Hussein’s foreign policy quite correctly.


33 posted on 03/04/2011 9:02:09 AM PST by Old Grumpy
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To: wmileo

“I thought it would take 10 years for the American Public to reevaluate GWB and his contribution to the establishment of democracy and freedom in the Middle East and elsewhere.”

###

Indeed.

Though, you can read, even here on FR what a “waste” and misadventure the WOT was (is).

Bluntly stated, the American military, at the direction of President Bush, ran al Qaeda’s murderous asses into the ground.

Islam is a virulent pathology however, and the pressure needs to be unrelenting.


34 posted on 03/04/2011 9:02:59 AM PST by EyeGuy (Gimme Shelter)
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To: EyeGuy
It remains to be seen whether the unrest in the Middle East will lead to greater levels of democracy or not. My wager would be - not.

The revolutions in France and Russia led to Bonapartism and Bolshevism, respectively. In times of unrest, those who are better armed, more organized and more ruthless tend to prevail. In Egypt the Islamists are organized and the comparatively secular democrats are not. It may well come down to a struggle between the army and the Brotherhood. Although the army would probably win such a showdown, democracy would not be a winner in either case. In Jordan, those calling for a constitutional monarchy are Islamists, not secular democrats. In Bahrain the fight is between Shiites and Sunnis, not Jeffersonians and monarchists, with significant meddling by Iran.

Let's wait for the results before we start praising W's nation building and advocacy for democracy in the Middle East.

35 posted on 03/04/2011 10:01:04 AM PST by p. henry
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To: p. henry

I didn’t say a word about nation-building. I specifically, and intentionally referred to hammering al Qaeda.

With the pathology that is Islam as the dominant, and deeply-entrenched cultural and societal force in these countries, nation-building would be, at the very best, a difficult uphill battle. I was never a fan of using our military as a civilizing police force.


36 posted on 03/04/2011 10:19:40 AM PST by EyeGuy (Gimme Shelter)
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To: EyeGuy
We did hammer Al-Qaeda and a major supporter of theirs...one Saddam....

Sadly ,...Obama is letting them rebuild themselves...

37 posted on 03/04/2011 7:12:14 PM PST by Ernest_at_the_Beach ( Support Geert Wilders)
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To: Huck

We have always been an imperial power. It is just that for almost a century and a half we concentrated on the conquest of North America. As late as 1896, some Americans—e.g. Teddy Roosevelt—were still talking about the annexation of Canada. If Polk had had his way, we would own the Yucatan now.


38 posted on 03/04/2011 11:05:57 PM PST by RobbyS (Pray with the suffering souls.)
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To: RexBeach
Obama doctrine = Do not taunt Happy Magic 8 Ball.


39 posted on 03/04/2011 11:10:19 PM PST by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: ClearCase_guy

You may have a point there, interesting.


40 posted on 03/04/2011 11:11:47 PM PST by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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To: PSYCHO-FREEP

You are correct. Without Capitalism, the engine of democracy, these sand jockeys are just running the Rolls Royce out into the desert until it runs out of gas. The desert is littered with men governed by the vapors of totalitarian oligarchy.


41 posted on 03/05/2011 3:56:27 AM PST by jonrick46 (We're being water boarded with the sewage of Fabian Socialism.)
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To: Cincinatus' Wife

Don’t sweat it. I remember on 10th anniversary ceremony of the Berlin Wall falling, not one official so much as uttered the name Reagan. But who is remembered most in that connection?


42 posted on 03/05/2011 1:31:53 PM PST by Eleutheria5 (End the occupation. Annex today.)
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To: wmileo

“I thought it would take 10 years for the American Public to reevaluate GWB and his contribution to the establishment of democracy and freedom in the Middle East and elsewhere.”

I think it’s a little premature to call Iraq and Afghanistan democracies. Even with our troops on site, Karzai still managed to corrupt the process in Afghanistan.

I also think it’s a bit presumptuous to call what is going on in Egypt, Tunisia, Libya, Bahrain, Yemen, and every other Arab hell-hole “democracy”.

In Egypt, protesters interviewed said they wanted more pay and bigger apartments. That’s hardly the stuff of democracies.

In virtually all of these countries the only thing that will change will be the name on the Swiss bank accounts where all the US foreign aid will end up.

Nation building was a bad idea when GWB was against it, it was a bad idea when he started doing it, and it’s still a bad idea today.


43 posted on 03/05/2011 1:43:10 PM PST by RFEngineer
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To: AnalogReigns

A key point you seem to be making is that if the Muslims get actual democracy, they will simply vote in something the west will have to fear.

This may well happen, but this would be good in some ways. Let me explain.

Today, when some dictator does something wretched, we are forced to hesitate in responding because we are noever sure if this man truly represents something the masses support. Now, if Muslim leader were elected on the platform of ‘invading Israel’ and then they he did it, we would have no problem in responding strongly. Even the lefties, would come along.

Second, I would expect the first few elections to be filled with vitriol for the west and heated with religious fervor. This is the only political speak the poor regular folk Muslims have ever heard. But, some where around the third or fourth election cycle, a prominent politician will stand up and say, “If you elect me, I’ll get you a job and better roads.” And, this message will actually resonate and make a lot more sense than always having to hate the Jews. I expect it to happen in Iraq fairly soon. I don’t what one’s culture is, people want to eat, have a safe healthy home, and give their children the best.

The bottom line is the principle of a free society with open debate and regular elections is the only thing we need to support and defend. What the Muslims do with it, is their business.....as it should be. Once they get rolling, a lot of this religious crap will die down.


44 posted on 03/06/2011 7:23:08 AM PST by Mustangman (The GOP)
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