"The world is not a lodging-house at Brighton, which we are to leave because it is miserable. It is the fortress of our family, with the flag flying on the turret, and the more miserable it is the less we should leave it."
-G. K. Chesterton, Orthodoxy
This here blog is a glimpse or two or three at the condition of the 'fortress of our family' through the eyes Timothy Goddard, a Christian writer with an unhealthy interest in politics living in the Puget Sound area.
Lots of good stuff at Instapundit I considered the headline "Glenn's Got Great Gobs of Greatness," but decided to forgoe it. At any rate, Glenn Reynolds has a marvelous piece at MSNBC about what America would be like if it really was an imperialist bully. An excerpt:
An imperial nation, possessed of the kind of lopsided military power the United States has in today’s world, wouldn’t waste its time with inspectors and diplomacy. Nor would it limit its ambitions to Iraq.
An Imperial America would probably join with nascent superpower India to divide up and conquer the region. India could have Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iran; we’d take Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Syria, and Egypt.
What about the “Arab street?” The answer would be machine guns, labor camps, and bulldozed mosques. (Replaced, perhaps, by new mosques with pliable mullahs). Really troublesome populations would be relocated, a la Stalin and the Crimean Tartars. (If the task proved too ugly for American troops, we’d hire mercenaries — excuse me, “Foreign Legion troops” — from sub-Saharan Africa, East Timor, and other places whose populations dislike Muslims. There would be atrocities and brutality, of course, but that would be part of the plan.) The response to people who said the war was just about oil? “You’re right. And if you’re nice to us, we’ll sell you some.” To keep the Russians happy, they’d get a cut of the action so long as they played ball.
Also linked from there is a speech John McCain gave at the Munich Conference on Security Policy. He sounds downright Republican again, and he's even continuing that Straight Talk business. Plus, he's the first US official that I've heard use the term 'unilateral' in reference to France and Germany, which I highly support (though, admittedly, it ought to be bilateral... in which case, the US's actions should be called nondecalateral, I suppose, but that's hardly the point). An excerpt:
But NATO's enduring success will depend on more than a reverence that becomes nostalgia for our friendship, and our past triumphs together. It will require us all to appreciate today, just as much as we did in the Cold War and in the weeks following September 11th, the nature of the threat to our shared interests and values, and how our common defense against it is the paramount obligation of our governments. And it is in keeping with that recognition, as well as my reverence for our friendship, that I speak bluntly today, and with perhaps less tact than a skilled diplomat. And if it seems I've come to pick a fight, please understand that I don't fight to alienate old friends, but to demonstrate that Americans believe in this Alliance, believe it is worth fighting for, and that our friendship can not only endure candid disagreements from time to time, but require our honesty to thrive. I hope it will be accepted in that spirit.
The French and German objection, for reasons of calculated self-interest -- a very flawed calculation, I fear - to a routine American request to the North Atlantic Council to upgrade Turkey's defenses against the military threat from Iraq was a terrible injury to an Alliance that has served their broader interests well. For nearly three weeks, the United States, with fourteen of our eighteen European allies in the North Atlantic Council, has supported this necessary action, but has confronted a new unilateralism conceived in Paris and Berlin, a unilateralism that exposed the sneering in those capitals about the impulsive cowboy in the White House for the vacuous posturing and obvious misdirection it is. Whatever NATO decides, Franco-German unilateralism will have a lasting impact on trans-Atlantic security calculations. If this minority French-German obstruction is not overcome by NATO's deadline of Monday, France and Germany will have to answer to those who argue that Iraq could be to NATO what Abyssinia was to the League of Nations.