“A Tragic Mistake” by Bob Herbert and “Clear, Hold and Duct Tape” by David Brooks (TIMES, 12/1/09)


          The two columns were positioned correctly on the op-ed page, Herbert’s on the left side and Brook’s on the right, which says something for the editor.

          The superiority of Herbert’s position to the one held by Brooks seems obvious to me, but I’m a lefty who has been calling for a withdrawal from both Afghanistan and Iraq for a long time.

           Yet Brooks’ penultimate paragraph is so mushy as to make even the strongest stomach turn, and Obama is NOT “taking brave political risks.” Quite the contrary, he is capitulating to the superpatriots responsible for the quagmire that Afghanistan is. 

          And little talk of the financial cost of this disaster by a self-styled “moderate conservative” who counts every dollar spent on health care and other welfare services because such aid might undermine the “dynamism” of the “traditional” U.S social system.

         The death toll in Iraq today was listed as 4357 and it is fast approaching one thousand in Afghanistan. Brooks has not given even a moderate guess of what those figures will be when “COIN-lite” runs its course.

          With moderate conservatives like Brooks, do the warhawks need neocons?

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