In Defense of Bush and His Doctrines by Navin Doshi (September, 2008)

“We are in a dangerous world. We must succeed in Iraq. Iraq must succeed as a democratic government.” – President George W. Bush.

Charlie Rose, in response to this asked President Bush, “Is there a Plan B?”

Bush promptly replied, “Plan B is to make every effort to make Plan A work – that is the best plan.” (2007, BEFORE THE SURGE)

I am a contrarian and try not to follow the herds. I am a buyer of a straw hat in winter when no one wants it. Today, Bush’s popularity rating is around 31% and probably much less world over. Before the surge in Iraq, it was around 25%. There is much hate and venom directed towards Bush among the liberals, and socialists. I am sure that Bush and his supporters would agree that they have made some mistakes in handling the Iraq war. He has been unpopular even among some republicans. No one uttered his name during the republican convention. He probably spent resources much more to defend America because of mistakes made in Iraq war.

They anticipated the best-case scenario after Sadam was removed. They were not adequately prepared for what happened after Sadam’s removal. They have not done a good job selling the war to the media and to the people. Senator Lieberman has done a better job selling Iraq war than anyone in the Bush administration. Please note that I consider myself to be independent- neither a democrat nor a republican. I have contributed more funds to democrats than republicans so far.

    So the question now is: What do I find positive about George W. Bush?

  1. Immediately after 9/11, the Bush administration removed the Taliban regime. This terrorist regime was not only most detrimental to India’s progress and security, but also, the rest of the world. The Taliban- in Afghanistan- with the help and funding of the ISI in Pakistan was the production factory of terrorists. It worked with the Al Qaeda, received funding from Saudi Arabia, and also from the late Saddam Hussein. It is well known that Saddam rewarded families of dead terrorists. World leaders like Lee Kuan Yew were in favor of removing Saddam. It was this “War on Terror” that Bush waged that forced Musharraff to make a complete turn in his policies and conduct. It made Pakistan officially support the war on terror. Ironic.
  2. However, even today, madrasas in the region between Afghanistan and Pakistan serve as production houses for mass terrorism. Terrorist activities in Kashmir and the rest of India were rampant before 9/11. Terrorism in India has subsided thanks, at least to some extent, to the Bush administration.
  3. No wonder, last year (2007), he was so popular in India- he had a 70% popularity rating in India. He is probably the friendliest U.S. president that India has dealt with. It was the Bush administration that toiled as hard as it did to help draft the nuclear treaty between India and the U.S.A. in spite of a strong opposition from nuclear Ayatollahs of the state department and congress. Today, Nuclear Supply Group (NSG) can do business with India; before, apartheid regime was practiced against India.
  4. We must recognize that the strength and prosperity of any nation is proportional to the energy- i.e. its oil consumption. It is almost imperative to have a reliable supply of oil in order to ensure that the economy of the country does not find itself in a dilemma. Getting rid of Saddam has potentially ensured a reliable source of oil from the Middle East. Please note that getting rid of Saddam has helped Governments of Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, major suppliers of oil to the west. There are probably many reasons as to why we had to attack Iraq: we had to get rid of Saddam thereby helping the Iraqis attain freedom. Because as President Bush has stated, “Freedom is universal. There is no relativity in matters of freedom, even for the Iraqi people- and there are about 50 million of them.” The other reason, which seems to be better remembered, was to get rid of any of the WMD’s that might have been there. However, the most important reason was to localize terrorist activities within Iraq, thereby reducing them in other regions. Apparently, it is easier to control terrorism in a localized area. All the suicide bombers- that are trained in the North Western regions of Pakistan- are shipped off to Iraq. Terrorist activity in the U.S.A. and Europe has greatly reduced owing to the Iraq war. Shia and Sunni mistrust, them killing each other- this was Saddam’s legacy. To this, add the Sunni and Wahabi Jihadis trained in Pakistani madarsas and in other regions kept streaming into Baghdad. These were the car bombs that killed indiscriminately. Some might say that Saddam’s Iraq was not the place for Al Qaeda- but that does not change the fact that Saddam’s Iraq was a terrorist state nevertheless.
  5. We know that the dollar is a world-reserved currency. It is honored almost everywhere in the world. The weakness of the dollar in the recent past is attributable to the perception that America has lost it’s resolve, thanks to the liberal media. If we were to leave Iraq, I believe that the dollar would have sunk substantially more. The success of the surge may be the cause of recent strength in dollar. I believe that the strength of the Reserve Currency is directly proportional to the military muscle of the country issuing it whether we like it or not. There is sufficient historical evidence to prove this. Yet, the fiscal and trade deficit, economic slow down, and the greed on Wall Street matter for the dollar to be weak. Responsibility of current problems of economy goes not only to the presidents, but also to congress, and the Fed chairman, particularly Greenspan, of last three and half decades.

After 9/11, his first doctrine was based upon his statement, “either you are with us to fight terrorism, or you are against us supporting terrorism”. This was one of the reasons to declare war on Saddam, a supporter of terror, and preemptive strike. His second doctrine was about spreading democracy. His words, ”the survival of liberty in our land increasingly depends on the success of liberty in other lands”, resonates with John Kennedy’s words, “we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, and support any friend to assure the survival and success of liberty”.

“It is difficult to deal with terrorism through non-violence,” the Tibetan spiritual leader, the Dalai Lama, said delivering the Madhavrao Scindia Memorial Lecture in Delhi in January 2009. He termed terrorism as the worst kind of violence which is not carried by a few mad people but by those who are brilliant and educated. “They (terrorists) are brilliant and educated…but a strong ill feeling is bred in them. Their minds are closed. Only way to tackle terrorism is through prevention”. The head of the Tibetan government-in-exile left the audience stunned when he said “I love President George W Bush.” He went on to add how he and the US President instantly struck a chord in their first meeting unlike politicians who take a while to develop close ties. “I told him ‘I love you but some of your policies I oppose’,”

Bush administration has protected America against an act of terrorism for over seven years. Now, let us conduct a thought experiment that sometime in the first week of September 2001, one civil servant, Mr. John Smith, implemented having a lock on a pilot door of every airplane. That would have prevented all the destruction and loss of life of 9/11. Would anyone remember and appreciate what Mr. John Smith did? No one gives credit to Bush for protecting America for last seven years. I believe, decades from now, history will be kind to him.

Navin Doshi
(Mr. Doshi is a financial market trader, writer, and a philanthropist)

P.S.
Argument to keeping stronger $ by M. R. Venkatesh: (NOV 2008)

Obviously, what aids and sustains the US dollar is a “suspended sense of disbelief” amongst countries about the value of US dollar. Yet, common sense tells us that the excess supply will obviously result in a fall in the value of any product. The US dollar is no exception.

Late Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein was fully aware of this paradigm. Seeking to exploit the inherent weakness of the US dollar, Saddam wanted to trade his crude in Euros, which would have lead to a lower demand for the US Dollar and thereby triggered a dollar collapse. And those were his “weapons of mass destruction — WMD.”

And if some analysts are to be believed, Venezuela and Iran too possess the very same WMD. Naturally, it requires some specious arguments and military intervention to protect the US dollar. Never in the history of mankind has a national army protected the national currency so vigorously as the US Army has done is the past decade or so.

Navin Doshi (September, 2008)
(Mr. Doshi is a financial market trader, writer, and a philanthropist)

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