Fighting Back Against Historical Revision

Glenn Reynolds follows up on the topic of historical revision. Apparently, Sylvester Brown, who had been named in Glenn's earlier piece on historical revision, did not enjoy the criticism, and suggested that Glenn did not know what he was talking about:
The difference is that to Bush critics, WMDs were all that mattered, while I favored the idea of turning the Middle East upside down and shaking, hard. Which we've done, and which, as even Brown grudgingly admits, seems to have done some good.

Glenn includes plenty of reader updates, including responses to this following claim from Brown:
Sorry, bloggers. When it comes to regime change and nation-building, I can't follow the wisdom of Bush and his crew. I lean more toward the words of a real straight shooter, Mohandas Gandhi:

"The spirit of democracy cannot be imposed from without. It has to come from within."

One correspondent suggested that Brown keep in mind what that other paragon of non-violent resistance, the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., said about Gandhi and non-violence:
Martin Luther King Jr. once said of Dietrich Bonhoeffer, the martyred World War II pastor, “if your opponent has a conscience, then follow Gandhi. But if you enemy has no conscience, like Hitler, then follow Bonhoeffer.”


As Bonhoeffer, and evidently King, came to understand, when your enemy has a basic moral structure which can be appealed to, and a conscience that can be troubled--as with Gandhi and the British in India, and King and racially segregated America--then disciplined non-violent disobedience and demonstration against injustice must be the morally superior path. However, when your enemy, in his implacable evil, has no conscience, then violence may be permissible and necessary.


I ask those who demonstrate and protest this potential war to contemplate this question. Is their opponent President Bush or Saddam Hussein? If their opponent is Bush, then protest peacefully, because he has a conscience to which they may appeal as Gandhi did against the British Raj and King did against segregationists. But if the enemy is a conscience-less Hussein--as I believe he is—then, like Bonhoeffer, do we not have a moral imperative to use force to oppose such evil?

I wonder if die-hard anti-Bushies will decry the link because it's to beliefnet, no secular organization. But then, both Dr. King and Gandhi were spiritual, even religious, men; does that mean that their beliefs are then unworthy?

But that's not all. In response to wretchard's post, "The Berlin Wall Has Fallen On Us", USMC_Vet posted a long response, which he's fleshed out at The Word Unheard:

They present themselves as Champions of Humanity and Protectors of Peace. Where were the Champions of Humanity while the intended recipients of the food (supposedly the bedrock of the Oil for Food Program) went hungry? Where were the Champions of Humanity when the tens of thousands were being tortured and slaughtered and bulldozed into the mass graves even still being unearthed within Saddam's Iraq? Where are the Champions of Humanity while still this very day newly freed Iraqi's sift through mounds of dirt and sand littered with the bones of the loved lost, searching for a recognized ring still around the dried finger bone of a wife or husband murdered or a familiar doll amid a pile of tiny bones that was once tucked into bed with tenderness or a simple piece of paper identification that assures them that the unrecognizable remains were once the husband, wife, niece or nephew they once shared meals with? Where? Where are our Champions? Busy averting their eyes from the uncomfortable?

Where are the Protectors of Peace while mobile flogging units prowl the streets of Iranian cities dispensing violent retribution for the glimpse of an ankle? Where are the Protectors of Peace while hundreds of thousands are butchered and erased in Sudan? Rwanda? Congo?

To be fair, plenty of conservatives have been pretty quiet about the last three places as well, except as debating points against the other side. However, there are those of us who don't give up. For some good movies, I'd recommend Tears of the Sun, which also portrays the mutual suspicion between Left and Right through the relationship between the characters of Monica Bellucci and Bruce Willis. I've also heard good things about Hotel Rwanda, though I haven't actually seen it.

Still, that does not excuse the International Left for the intellectually dishonest and utterly lazy way in which they try to portray President Bush as the very apotheosis of all that is wrong with the world, while the target of their insults not only belies their accusations through his rhetoric (which of course they don't listen to or read), but also through his actions to encourage the development of ideals which once had been the domain of liberals the world over.

Some have gotten on the wagon, and at least make an attempt to muzzle their inexplicable anti-Bushism with a genuine appreciation for the fruits of Bush's harvest. There are also some who are very clear that their disagreements with Bush's domestic policy do not preclude them from supporting the President's overall foreign policy.

But there is a fairly large contingent of moonbats out there for whom, as Richard Land suggests, being against Bush trumps being for anything, let alone anything worthily liberal.

As James Ozark writes, these moonbats that kept screeching, not in our name, can go on screeching, while the rest of us are thankful that they will never put their names to anything worthwhile.

[Cross-posted at Between Worlds]

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