I don’t really care much about inter-blog squabbles, but I think this post by Patrick Nielsen Hayden transcends its inspiration:
The estimable Calpundit says “My sense from reading the anti-war left is that they don’t really take the danger of terrorism and unstable states seriously.”
Not to be too cranky about it, but “terrorism and unstable states” blew up a big chunk of my home town. Watching the ashes and personal debris of several thousand of your fellow citizens rain down on your neighborhood is not something you readily forget.
One of the more predictable rhetorical techniques in any argument about war or peace is the suggestion that those who oppose a particular war, or a particular plan for war, must be speaking from a pacifistic, hello-clouds hello-sky outlook. You’re either a hawk or a dove; it’s all about prior inclination. In antiwar circles, this expresses itself in the regrattably common and equally foolish notion that military people are all a bunch of General Jack D. Rippers dragging civilians to war. In fact many of the people I know who are most opposed to this war are former or current members of the military, and many of the antiwar civilians I know are, in temperament and outlook, martial as hell. We’re not pacifists, we’re far from opposed to every imaginable use of US power, and we’re clear on the danger presented by “terrorism and unstable states,” thank you very much. What we’re unhappy about is the overwhelming evidence that this war will make us less safe, not more; that it will diminish American power, not increase it; and that it will empower “terrorism and unstable states” to an unprecedented degree.
There’s more, and he’s right. I believe Patrick is a neighbor of mine, and where we live, this wasn’t all some exciting tv show. It was something we lived through, and then lived with, for months.