Monday, October 01, 2007

Friedman says "suck it" to 9/11

Well sort of. Although he did say no more 6 months on the Colbert report. I'm going to hold him to that.
Juan Cole's take:
For the 'globalized business' crowd, the Iraq war was not a sacred mission, as it was for the Neoconservatives, but rather just another lowering of barriers to investment and business (which might also have opened the Arab world up, which would have been all to the good). The Iraq War worked in part precisely because both the Bonapartist and the global-capital fractions within the business classes could agree that it might end Arab socialism and end the barriers to doing business among the 300 million people of the Middle East.

Friedman writes:

' I’d love to see us salvage something decent in Iraq that might help tilt the Middle East onto a more progressive pathway. That was and is necessary to improve our security. But sometimes the necessary is impossible — and we just can’t keep chasing that rainbow this way. '

In other words, the Iraq War was a business investment, which was a bit of a risk but entirely justifiable at the time (you can hear the nervous CEO explaining to the Board of Directors). But the investment has gone south, isn't working out, and no successful businessman throws good money after bad.

The attack on Giuliani comes because he is still attached to the new acquisition and does want to go on hemorrhaging funds.

It is time, Friedman argues in contrast, to cut our losses and sell off this white elephant of an acquisition (the whole 'War on Terror' including Iraq), which is bleeding money, hurting the firm's image, scaring off investors, and forestalling needed new investments in key growth sectors.

USA, Inc. is moving on.

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