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December 2, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Dec. 17, 2009 30 Kislev 5770

Our Flip-Flopping Wars

By Victor Davis Hanson



http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | We don't hear all that much about Iraq these days, do we?


The war at one point almost tore apart this country. Public anger sent George W. Bush's approval ratings plummeting. And the outrage over our losses helped elect vocal anti-Iraq-war candidate Barack Obama.


But Iraq is hardly in the news anymore. That seems odd, given there are still 120,000 American troops stationed there.


So, why the silence?


In short, Americans are not dying in Iraq as they were from 2006 to 2008. Twice as many Americans have died in Afghanistan this year as in Iraq. As of this writing, in December, there have been four coalition fatalities. That's about 1/10 of the number of people murdered per month in Chicago in 2008.


Perceptions of the war in Iraq have also changed in unforeseen ways.


"No blood for oil," for example, was once a common anti-war cry. But Iraq's auctioning of its oil leases has gone mostly to Europeans, Russians and Chinese — not Americans.


The U.S., it turned out, did not go to Iraq to steal its natural resources. Apparently, we instead ensured a fair auction by a constitutional government that preferred non-American companies to pump its oil. In the end, we were more idealistic — or naive —than conspiratorial.


Then there is Iran, which, many argued, was supposed to be have been empowered after we removed its nemesis Saddam Hussein. And, indeed, it sure looked that way when Iranian agents were stirring up violence in Iraq.


Yet this year, a million Iranians went out in the streets to demand free and fair elections of the sort they hear constantly about across their border. In other words, perhaps the democratic experiment in Iraq — where Shiite Muslims enjoy freedom — will prove destabilizing in the long term to the Iranian theocracy.


Here at home, the portrayal of the two wars we're engaged in is just as topsy-turvy. When fewer than 100 Americans were dying each year in Afghanistan, and the Taliban were in hiding, the Afghan conflict was proclaimed a necessary, good war — in contrast to the optional, costly and apparently failed effort in Iraq.

Letter from JWR publisher


But in 2009, George Bush's bad war quieted down. And the good war in Afghanistan, now overseen by Barack Obama, heated up.


In turn, the politics flipped as well.


Once upon a time, presidential candidate Barack Obama argued that combat troops should leave Iraq by March 2008, and more soldiers sent to Afghanistan. That seemed popular at the time, since most then thought Iraq was hopeless.


But under the present reversed conditions, President Obama apparently has followed the Bush-Petraeus plan of incremental withdrawal from Iraq. And, with Afghanistan, he waited months before granting the requests of his generals for more troops — while insisting on a deadline to start bringing them back home.


As a result, the leftwing loyalists who helped elect Obama on his anti-war credentials are now furious at the Nobel Peace Laureate for sending any additional troops to Afghanistan. And his biggest supporters, ironically, are his usual right-wing opponents, who now applaud him for listening to his generals.


The media coverage of Afghanistan and Iraq has been just as schizophrenic. So far, the rising violence in Afghanistan is not quite front-page news as Iraq once was. Most in the media seem reluctant to tar Obama with a messy quagmire — at least not yet — in the way the reporting from Iraq helped bring down George Bush.


Many in the media (not to mention Congress) once were delighted that retired high-ranking officers — in a "revolt of the generals" moment — came forward to criticize Bush and our conduct in Iraq.


Now, though, we hear all kinds of concern that Gen. Stanley McChrystal once publicly expressed impatience with the decision-making of the Obama administration. Whether it is good or bad for officers to wade into politics, or whether surges are doomed or logical, apparently depends on who is in the White House.


What are we to make of all these flip-flops?


Iraq was never lost and Afghanistan was never quite the easy good war. Those in the media too often pile on and follow the polls rather than offer independent analysis. Campaign rhetoric and politics are one thing — the responsibility of governance is quite another.


And when wars break out, no one ever quite knows how things will finally end up.

Every weekday JewishWorldReview.com publishes what many in the media and Washington consider "must-reading". Sign up for the daily JWR update. It's free. Just click here.

Victor Davis Hanson, a classicist and military historian, is a senior fellow at the Hoover Institution and a recipient of the 2007 National Humanities Medal. Comment by clicking here.


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