It's odd that it has taken President Bush so long to say bluntly that our presence in Iraq should mirror our presence in South Korea. I understood that this would be our role there when the president talked about a long, hard war and that we wouldn't be in and out in a few months.
Stabilizing the Middle East and making it a place habitable for democracy are not goals that can be achieved in 12 months or whatever the timetables desired by Democrats are.
Naturally, the Left doesn't like this comparison at all. In fact, they want to tell you what a horrible place South Korea is.
But Jules Crittenden points out that we've had a presence in South Korea, Germany, and Japan for a total of more than a century, and we don't seem to be inclined to leave those places any time soon. Why isn't the Left more concerned about that, and why do they insist that our presence shouldn't be in a strategic area like Iraq?
And this is our role in the world:
Superpower. Defender of freedom. Promoter of trade. Facilitator of third-world development. Provider of unprecedented and unmatched aid to large parts of the world. Democrats were not always isolationists, and some of their greatest heroes, FDR, HST and JFK, each a stalwart on most if not all of those fronts.
The Middle East has been one of the most problematic regions in the world for decades. A lot of people made a lot of mistakes there, locals and foreigners like us, going way back. It has valuable resources, which invite trouble. The Middle East is not headed anywhere good, nor has it been for some time, thanks to people like Saddam Hussein, Osama bin Laden and his ilk, the mullahs of Iran, their proxies in Lebanon and Gaza. It needs to be stabilized. This is hard work and will take time. Without our significant involvement, it won’t happen. If you think that our withdrawal from Iraq will result in peace, you are dreaming.