Arguments are getting quite heated among libertarians about the claim that the US is a potential threat to freedom versus the view that the US is the best guarantor of freedom in the world today. I happen to agree with both statements.
It would be absurd to claim that the US is a worse place to live than peacetime Iraq, unless one happened to enjoy being part of a quasi-fascist police state. It is reasonable to worry about the potential threat to freedom posed by the world’s only superpower: there is no one to overthrow that state if it should go rotten.
I am disappointed in the complacency of some US libertarians and conservatives who ought to remember that wartime is the time when most encroachments on freedom can be justified. I have been accused of hype for using Hillary Clinton as an example of what a horrible US could be. Surely there can’t be anyone who thinks that none of Presidents Lincoln, Wilson, Hoover, F.D.Roosevelt, Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Carter, Bush senior and Clinton were ever a threat to freedom? Or that no one will ever be elected to the US presidency who is a bad person?
I certainly wish the US forces in the Middle East a speedy and successful trip. I equally hope that the plan is to remove the tyrant with no or low civilian casualties, both for humanitarian reasons, but also because a post-Saddam Iraq will be less resentful of US troops if there hasn’t been carpet-bombing, or bad target intelligence.
I remain convinced that the British forces will either be as symbolic or ineffective as the Piedmont-Sardinian contingent during the Crimean War, or worse that they are headed for a repeat of Isandlwana, Majuba Hill, or Dunkirk. Bluntly the best troops in the world are cannon fodder when they run out of ammunition, the comms equipment doesn’t work and their boots have melted in the sun.
As for ID cards for use against terrorism. Yes they can help. Yes they are also a violation of personal liberty. But I would be rather more convinced if the British government weren’t providing safe havens for terrorists whether leftist, Islamist or Irish.