Can -- should -- former Virginia senator Jim Webb challenge Hillary Clinton
for the Democratic nomination?
I would prefer Elizabeth Warren. If she hops in, I'm
in. But hop she (probably) won't.
As for Webb...
He seems an improbable candidate. He has taken illiberal positions, was President Ronald Reagan's Navy secretary, has few relationships within the Democratic Party, and has no serious fundraising network.
What he does possess is a long-held and forceful opposition to U.S. interventions in Iraq and Libya, and potentially Syria, as well as solid anti-Wall Street credentials. In Democratic primaries, these may be Clinton's greatest impediments to rallying a hard-core activist base.
Clinton recently said she disagreed with Obama's decision not to intervene in the Syrian civil war. Webb warns that the Syrian opposition includes not only elements friendly to the U.S., but also the radical Islamic State forces that have wreaked mayhem there and in Iraq, murdering thousands and beheading two American journalists. Syria, he has warned, is "Lebanon on steroids."
There are forces in this country -- and it remains an open question whether Clinton stands with those forces -- who seek to use public outrage against ISIS as an excuse to bring down Bashar Assad of Syria. (Let me repeat the truth which our media doesn't want you to hear: Assad did not create ISIS. We created ISIS as a means of bringing down Assad.
Right now, Obama is putting together a plan to bring down ISIS
over a period of three years. Although many readers may feel that ISIS is so vile as to justify war, a careful reading of the afore-linked NYT story indicates that the main target is Bashar Assad.
The official nonetheless expressed confidence that the countries would eventually come around to taking the fight into Syria, in part, he said, because “there’s really no other alternative.”
As a regular reader of Cannonfire said in a comment on Marcy Wheeler's site:
Only 3 years such a bargain, it might cheaper and with less death to stop arming and funding them.
Webb will not try to topple Assad under the pretext of battling ISIS. Webb has a solid history of seeing right through that kind of bullshit.
Some feminist readers, and some non-white readers, will score me for favoring a white male over a woman or a non-caucasian. That's understandable. The Dems should have nominated a woman for president ages and ages ago. At this point, many liberals would feel more comfortable if Webb were a female, or a person of color, or both. (How do you think he'd look in a sari or a kimono? Just spitballing, here...)
Although I think of myself as pro-woman, I am also anti-war. The latter consideration outweighs the former -- or, perhaps, derives
from the former. Our wars tend to make life miserable for many, many women -- and for many, many people who are not white.
Although some feminists theorize that all women are peaceful by nature, history tells us otherwise. As many have noted, and as I've discovered personally, female supporters of Israel are usually the most stridently insane advocates of genocide. (The horrifying case of Joan Rivers provides us with an excellent example
-- and let's not even talk about Pam Geller.) I'm not going to vote for a bellicose individual simply because that person was born female.
If Webb's in, I'm in.
As for Hillary: She was quite admirable in 2008. What the hell has happened