Saturday, July 24, 2004

Opinion Changes

Matthew Yglesias reports young people have had one of the greatest swings in opinion against the Iraq war of any demographic group. As a member of this demographic who has gone from being pro-war to anti-war, I think Matt has it about right. In 1999, I had reservations about the Kosovo intervention because I believed it was likely to lead to a quagmire and that the Clinton administration had, by insisting on certain provisions in the Rambouillet Accords, sabotaged diplomacy that otherwise might have contained what was a very bad situation. As things developed, I came to see that I was wrong, and even that playing diplomatic hardball to force a conflict might be necessary when the odds were something worse could follow. When the Iraq war came along, I remembered this debate, and decided to support the war as long as it didn't interfere with the broader "War on Terror" and we had some sort of reasonable plan for the aftermath. As I've said before, I screwed up on all counts. Hopefully that means I'm now older and wiser.


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