Friday, February 28, 2003

A Promise of Destabilization-Lileks not only knocked one out of the park, this one's achieved escape velocity. It starts out at normal Lileks high quality as he goes over Saddam and Gunga Dan, but hits the afterburners when he talks about Bush's AEI speech-
It would be just another speech, just another collection of euphonious platitudes - if it weren’t for the sword we’ve slowly unsheathed over the last six months. No one in the region could mistake the implications of that address. You have to be tone-deaf not to see how many different melodies are contained in those simple statements. It's not something that threatens to destablize the region. It's a promise. Whether we can do it, or should, is of course the issue reasonable people can debate. But let's not waste time rolling our eyes at another example of Yanuqui simplisme. Rote obescience to "complexity" is what got us in this mess. We mistook the governments of the countries for the countries themeselves. We focused on mapping the contours of the Gordian Knot, not on teasing out the strands that made up the rope. So now someone suggests we cut the knot, as we've been advised to do for decades - and everyone's horrified that we've raised our hand to strike. Why? Perhaps because it's Bush who's made the decision to act.
We're going to see some serious change in the Middle East; hang on tight and enjoy the ride.

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