The Blog

17 Years Into 100 Year War

10:53 AM, May 1, 2008 • By MICHAEL GOLDFARB
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Noah Millman makes an excellent point at the American Scene:

You know, the forces of the United States have been engaged in Iraq since January 1991. That's seventeen years. This year will see the last American election in which all eligible voters were born before our conflict with Iraq. Our conflict with Iraq has lasted longer than the conflict in Vietnam (dating that war either from the Hanoi Politburo's decision for war in 1959 or President Kennedy's dispatch of military advisers), longer than the Weimar Republic, longer than the combined terms of Hoover and Roosevelt, longer than the Civil War plus Reconstruction, longer than the period from Napoleon's coup to his defeat at Waterloo . . . it's lasted a long time....

This is all by way of putting the debate we currently have before us in context. McCain's "100 Year War" has been much mocked, but we've been engaged in Iraq for more than 1/6th of that time period already. What he's talking about is continuing along a road that we've been travelling for three Presidencies.