Strange New Respect

Regular readers know how skeptical we are of the “road map.” In this morning’s Washington Post, Richard Cohen effusively praises President Bush. Cohen being Cohen, this does nothing to relieve our concerns. Cohen writes:
“To the dismay of many, Bush has so far proved effective because he has not shied from using force. He has shown he means what he says. When he said he wouldn’t deal with Arafat, he didn’t deal with him. When he said he would whack Iraq, he whacked it. When he said he would get involved in the peace process, he did. He not only can bang heads together, he will. His record so far says so.
“To the chagrin of those who criticized Bush for doing nothing in the Middle East, to the horror of those who abhor the use of force, the president may succeed where every American president in modern times has failed. Like Alexander, he didn’t fuss with the Gordian knot. He cut it. It’s called changing the facts on the ground.”
I still think that it will take more than overthrowing Saddam Hussein and holding a few meetings to cause the Palestinians to give up their genocidal fantasies, the one and only obstacle to peace between them and the Israelis. But Cohen’s broader point–President Bush gets results because he means what he says, and is not afraid to act–is certainly true.

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