Right at the End - William F. Buckley on Iraq

Dr Jeffrey Hart was a long time associate of William F. Buckley, Jr and here pens an appreciation of Buckley’s clear view of the Iraq mess - a view which was at odds with the National Review line on the war.

“Buckley published three syndicated columns about Iraq, all of which were reprinted in National Review. The first argued that it is doubtful that an effort “hugely greater in scale and more refined in conception” would produce the desired result. When no weapons of mass destruction were found, Buckley speculated that this rationale for the invasion, now discredited, would not matter if all ended well. But as the 2004 presidential election approached, he compared the evident quagmire to the French defeat by a brutal insurgency in Algeria.”

“In these pieces, Buckley diverged sharply from the generally optimistic view of Iraq taken by National Review.”

“But the conviction hinted in the columns only hardened during the last year of Buckley’s life, when he arrived at a tragic view of the Iraq War. He saw it as a disaster and thought that the conservative movement he had created had in effect committed intellectual suicide by failing to maintain critical distance from the Bush administration.”
Full column @ http://www.amconmag.com/2008/2008_03_24/article1.html

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