One Irish politician said, “if there were no weapons of mass destruction then the war was fought on a lie.” In the US, over 40% of the public, according to a recent poll, either believe that WMDs were found in Iraq or are unclear on whether they were found. The US has moved on from the war. Iraq is over and done, and the fact that the entire basis for war was lies, falsehoods, fabricated evidence, and spin doesn’t bother us in the least. Meanwhile, the continued reports of civil unrest and American mismanagement in Iraq doesn’t phase anyone here…and people still refuse to accept that we will need to be in that region for several more years, and provide hundreds of billions in aid at the same time that we are cutting taxes and raising the debt ceiling for an already struggling economy.
There is an apt quote that explains all this. It comes from way back seven years ago in the first episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Vampires had attacked a bar and Xander knew one thing for certain – the town would never be the same. Except that it was. People had moved on, made up stories and excuses, substitued “gangs on PCP” in place of vicious monsters. Well-established worldviews won out over scary and new and real.
Giles commented thusly: “People have a tendency to rationalize what they can and forget what they can’t.” Pretty much sums up our country, I think.