Again, Victor Davis Hanson puts the calls of "quagmire" in Iraq into perspective in his typically graceful style. A sample:
The earlier conundrum put to rest by the rapidity of our victory insidiously resurfaced as it became clear that it was not a cost-free task for 140,000 Americans to institute democracy among 26 million Iraqis tyrannized for three decades. Newspaper pundits, NPR commentators, and Democratic aspirants, knowing nothing of the challenges of postwar Okinawa, the dilemma of ex-Nazis in occupied Germany, or the mess in 1946 Korea, implied that 60 American dead meant failure and a Chechnya-style inferno. Our soldiers’ job, of course, was made no easier by the usual Arab mendacious fare broadcast freely into the country — Jews were now buying Iraqi land; Jewish troops were capitalizing on the occupation, Jews, Jews, Jews…Worse, still it was not only that our enemies wished us to fail, but our so-called friends in the region were equally apprehensive that the virus of democracy might well be contagious.
Hanson has the singular ability to take current events and put them in the valuable historical context that our media and policymakers love to conveniently forget. No one said that building the peace in Iraq would be easy – nearly everyone agreed that the nation-building part of the equation would take far longer than the war itself. It doesn’t help that the nations that border Iraq have every interest in maintaining the bloody status quo.
At the same time, it is especially important to note that US troops are rebuilding Iraq, sometimes from the ground up. They are putting their lives on the line to keep order, rebuild the national infrastructure, and protect civilan lives. The elitist liberal media only cares about hyping the doom and gloom and using words like "quagmire" and "Vietnam" in order to sell more papers and hype their ratings. The story that isn’t being told is one of self-sacrifice, heroism, and absolute bravery by our troops. Thankfully we have more balanced and rational people like Mr. Hanson to remind us.