I’ve been noticing that the latest polls seem to show a sharp upswing in support for the war in Iraq, most recently with sound-looking polls in the UK (where support was only 19% a couple of weeks ago) and Australia showing majorities in favor of the war. Why is that? My personal opinion is that it’s the same phenomenon by which every Super Bowl winner or NBA champion (Premier League, Super 12, whatever) seems to have many more fans – long-time fans, even – than anyone had previously expected. People want to identify with the winner, even if that identification blatantly contradicts everything they’d thought and said earlier. The hawks are perceived to have won – not the war, but the political battle over whether to wage war – so all of a sudden everybody was on their side all along.

Personally, I think that’s pathetic. I’m not so much opposed to war, not even to war in Iraq, as to this particular war – at this time, for these reasons, in this manner. I still stand by my reasons. There’s no way back now, I know that, and I fully support our troops in moving forward, but I’m not going to rewrite history and claim that I was just playing devil’s advocate. Whatever happens in Iraq this year, or next, in 2020 or 2050 we’ll look back on it as a turning point downward for the US. We’re like a certain big corporation I used to work at, which could never see beyond the next quarterly report and over time lost what had been a large technical lead over its competitors. Sometimes you have to look at the long term too.