Two very good posts on Afghanistan…

… from Lindsay Beyerstein, here and here.

Tomasky also takes Moore to task for his so-called knee-jerk anti-imperialism.

“Why wouldn’t someone with Moore’s lefty politics be righteous in the conviction that we owe it to the Afghan people to try to help them establish a proper nation-state for the first time in their history?” Tomasky wants to know.

I am so sick of hearing this straw man argument from liberals. They point to a desirable goal and accuse us of rejecting it, even though nobody actually objects to the war because they hate women’s liberation and clean drinking water. The point of contention is not whether a stable and democratic Afghanistan would be desirable, but whether military occupation is a good means to that end.

It’s like saying, “You’d think a lefty would want to put out this fire.” Well, yes, we lefties like firefighting, but the question is whether it’s a good idea to try to put out this blaze with gasoline.

Follow the links to Tomasky’s column and you get this:

Having invaded it, we ought to try to help it, not just throw up our hands and say forget about it.

I write this with full awareness that we probably will throw up our hands and say forget about it in three or four years. But who knows? Maybe some actual progress toward a functioning civil society will be made in those three or four years. So it seems to me worth one more shot. So to speak!

I wonder how many billions we’ll spend and how many people will die in the course of giving it “one more shot” before we “throw up our hands and say forget about it.” I wonder if the possible progress in the general direction of maybe accomplishing someday will seem like a worthwhile tradeoff.

God save us from the Sensible Liberals.

(In the spirit of that full disclosure thing so popular with the kids today, Tomasky was editor at The American Prospect for awhile when my cartoon ran there.)