It has quite literally become impossible to have a sustained conversation with Liberal Americans on the issue of National Security. And that bothers me. So I took some time to think about when and how this all came about, and I have isolated a few of the factors which are causing this disorder. And make no mistake, whatever one wants to call this situation, it is not healthy for America to go on this way.
He is right, but how to bring the left back into the mainstream on national security is a very difficult problem to solve.
One of the reasons I am so impressed with Lawrence Wright’s The Looming Tower: Al Qaeda and the Path to 9/11 is that reading such a comprehensive, serious and riveting book may be one means of encouraging the left to become serious about the war. It is hard to blame Bush, or Clinton, Bush I or even Reagan for that matter for the vision of Sayyed Qutb and his intellectual heirs, given that Nassar executed Qutb in 1966. Wright’s great contribution is in charting the geneology of Islamic fascism, and if the left focuses on that geneology, they will have to drop a great deal of their pose –“Bush lied, people died,” “the breeding ground of terrorism,” “Tora Bora”– and address the menace before us.
And if the left won’t or can’t return to the national security mainstream, perhaps enough Democrats will simply say enough and wash their hands of the extremism to shatter the appearance of power among the radicals of the party and set up a new centrist banner that caucuses apart from the old Democrats and which works with the GOP on national security while retaining the historic ties of the Democratic party to labor and minorty groups without the baggage of the pacifist/defeatist MoveOn.org netroots and their national representatives.