David French has a powerful post regarding his support for the second Iraq War. It should be read in full, but here is the key section:
Earlier this week, progressive Christian writer Jonathan Merritt called me out by name as an Evangelical supporter of the war in Iraq, claiming that people like me share the blame for persecution of Iraq’s Christians, noting (correctly) that Iraq’s Christians suffered during the Iraq War (as did all Iraqis), then claiming I should be “pleading for forgiveness.”
I’m not sorry that I advocated that America destroy a regime that committed mass murder, harbored terrorists, invaded its neighbors, funded jihad against Israel, shot daily at American pilots, tried to kill an American president, and was diligently working to rebuild its once-massive stocks of chemical weapons.
I’m not sorry that we fought long and hard — both against the regime (initially) and the insurgency (later) — to not just defeat our enemy but to replace it with a more humane, more stable government.
I’m not sorry that while we fought we made every effort — even at the cost of American lives — to protect and safeguard the population even as we confronted an enemy who wanted nothing more than to increase the civilian body count in the most gruesome ways possible.
In fact, I’m proud of what we were building, not a perfect state, to be sure, but a place that was — while we were still there — proving to be more peaceful, more prosperous, and more free than Saddam’s broken, murderous, kleptocratic tyranny.
I’m proud that every single year of the war enough Americans believed in this mission that an all-volunteer force sustained a long fight, and sustains our fight in Afghanistan to this day.
I’m not “pleading for forgiveness,” but I am angry — angry that we were not permitted to preserve our hard-won victories and protect the people we’d sacrificed so much to save. Yes, Christians suffered during the war, but we did everything we could to stop that suffering, and the suffering of all of Iraq’s people. Had an American force stayed behind, we would not see ISIS in control of Mosul. We would not see the Peshmerga retreating for lack of ammunition. We would not see a new Caliphate emerging from the ruin of two countries. It really is that simple.
This is exactly right.
Earlier, some people had called me out for saying that I was ashamed of America because of its policy of neglecting Iraq. They made the claim that America should be absolved of all blame, as the policy was Obama’s, and not America’s.
This is ridiculous. If we can be proud of our country because of the actions of our president, then we can and should be ashamed of our country because of his inaction. Americans elected Obama, not once, but twice, and even today his policies towards Iraq are receiving wide support among the political class, the press, and the the population at large. One cannot say that we should be ashamed of Obama, but proud of our country. If we tolerate him and allow him to do what he has done, then we share the same guilt. If it can be rightly said that Obama has blood on his hands because of the deaths of innocent people in Iraq, then America also has blood on its hands.
So, yes, I am proud of the invasion of Iraq, but I find that America has now become a disgrace, and I feel so very, very ashamed of my country, because it has refused to take responsibility for a crisis that it has caused through its policy of abandonment and betrayal.