Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Greg Djerejian is just a Little. Bit. Pissed.

I knew there was some reason I liked this guy. In my ignorance I had no idea that he was the son of a diplomat, but I should have known. His writing is not only lucid, but filled with hints that he has been spoon-fed the facts of life by a career statesman, his father, Edward P. Djerejian, a forty-year veteran of the Foreign Service.

This is a long post. Don't start it unless you aim to pay attention. But after reading it, my admiration for Greg Djerejian has moved up to the top notch. He opens with a brief outline of how his father has been maligned. Not by just anybody, but by some smart people who ought to know better, including none other than the Blogfather himself.

...with Glenn Reynolds entering the fray and calling my father's predictions “na├»ve” (quite a charge coming from that famed Middle East specialist Instapundit(!)—seemingly always at the ‘aw shucks, sounds good’ ready to link whatever neo-con swill du jour), it appears I have to wade into this recriminatory morass, if for no other reason than to defend a family member I respect.

Thus begins a fisking to end all fisking. No need for me to go further. Read it for yourself.

He ends, however, on a positive note. This is the mark of a real gentleman.

A final word, to anyone who has stuck with me through this lengthy screed. Look, we're in an awful situation in Iraq right now, and I think this country needs to come together and focus on constructive policy recommendations given how grave the situation is. Therefore I am in favor (and of course I am biased, as my father is involved) of at least giving the Baker-Hamilton Commission a real chance at producing their report and seeing if the broad centers of both parties can perhaps broach their differences and unite via the ISG on a plausible way forward. Predictably, the Baker-Hamilton Commission is getting hit from both the Left (who view it as a fig-leaf for a 'peace with honor' type withdrawal that will hold at bay an immediate withdrawal of our troops) and the Right (where fevered total victory types like Rubin see the Commission as a defeatist, appeasement-loving stab in the back that will cheer jihadists from Jakarta to Alhambra). In an era that seems a long, long time ago--politics were supposed to stop at the water's edge. That bipartisan
tradition appears to be mostly (if not wholly) dead, of course, but now we find ourselves in the worst jam since Vietnam overseas and we really need to start pulling together in serious manner in the face of major strategic challenges.

This is not to say we cannot air our differences, debate is the life-blood of our democracy, and it is imperative. But let's at least try to be constructive (which isn't to say I've not been guilty of broad-sides not infrequently, but I do try to balancethem with contributions to the policy debate, and I've seen precious little of Rubin attempting to suggest credible policy alternatives of late, rather than carp rather incoherently from the sidelines). This, in a nutshell, was the main reason I was so disgusted by Rubin's drive-by preemptive strike on the Baker-Hamilton Commission--not only because of the gross display of arrogance in criticizing those trying to put out a fire that many of his ideological fellow-travellers played a key part in setting alight (to use Greenwald's analogy)--but also because he spent so much time busily poisoning the well (see his aspersions of various ISG study group members in the linked piece) rather than constructively helping to move the situation forward in collaborative manner. In a word, it was low, but these days, par with the course, I guess.

"...neocon swill du jour."
I love it. Wish I'd thought of that.
As they say, "Heh."

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