The Corner

Tom Robbins

I found this quote via Andrew Sullivan. It’s from the novelist Tom Robbins in the Seattle Weekly:

“Quite probably the worst thing about the inevitable and totally unjustifiable war with Iraq is that there’s no chance the U.S. might lose it. America is a young country, and intellectually, emotionally, and physically, it has been exhibiting all the characteristics of an adolescent bully, a pubescent punk who’s too big for his britches and too strong for his age. Someday, perhaps, we may grow out of our mindless, pimple-faced arrogance, but in the meantime, it might do us a ton of good to have our butts kicked. Unfortunately, like most of the targets we pick on, Iraq is much too weak to give us the thrashing our continuously overbearing behavior deserves, while Saddam is even less deserving of victory than Bush.” – novelist Tom Robbins, Seattle Weekly.

Now, I receive the tedious chickenhawk charge from anti-war types almost every day. I think it’s mostly a dumb argument or at best a fine debating point stretched to unrecognizable lengths. But tell me? What are we to make of Robbins? As a proponent of war, I would be delighted — ecstatic even — if not a single American were killed or wounded. I would love it if only the most brutal members of the Baathist regime were killed or wounded, sparing the lives of innocent Iraqis and unfortunate Iraqi conscripts. In short, I don’t crave blood in the slightest. I hope for victory, yes, blood, no. Robbins, on the other hand, craves not merely blood, but American blood. How else to read this? The worst thing about this war is that we can’t lose it? What does he think “losing” and getting “out butt kicked” might mean other than the deaths — probably by chemical and biologoical weapons — of tens of thousands of Americans?

I will never — ever — again bite my tongue when tempted to say that some of these cretins are not merely dumb, but anti-American and unpatriotic.


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