The Corner

The Voice of Despair

The doctrine that says “you’re either with us or with the terrorists” does not in itself oblige or commit the United States to a specific course of action toward those who are “with the terrorists.” If it did — and this is the key point here — it would be unsustainable as a doctrine in the long term, because it would commit us to a course of belligerent action that we could not sustain against any number of countries simultaneously. Victory in the war on terror, as the president said, is a matter of decades, and the strategy and tactics required to win that war must be fluid enough to take account of hard realities at given moments. That’s just common sense. If George Bush isn’t hard-line enough for you, Andy, then basically, we’re doomed, because he’s as hard-line as you’re ever going to get.

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