Most of us who support the “freedom forward” geostrategy of reducing the risk of terrorism by fomenting liberal democracies in place of repressive regimes do so because we’d rather not have the current wave of terrorism end the way hostilities with Native Americans were ended.
On the other side are the progressives, who by and large would rather not be bothered. It is widely commented on in the blogosphere about how these naysayers are helping promote the black glass solution by interferring with the effort in Afghanistan and Iraq to spark a reformation of Arab-Islamic culture that will avoid such an eventuality. However, it seems to me that the progressives are making such a end more likely in another way as well.
One of their essential root arguments is that “it’s not worth it”, that helping Iraq isn’t worth any American blood or treasure, that we should be focused purely on helping our own nation’s immediate needs. Closely entwined with this is the concept that those foreigners are unwilling or incapable of running a liberal democracy, so that the whole effort is a fool’s errand. Now, suppose those memes take hold in the American citizenry. Suppose the memes become widely accepted. What, then, would be the objection to solving the problem of Caliphascist terrorism with black glass if we owe no help to the targets and they’re a hopeless case anyway? Of course, if such people could think through to the end results of their policies, they wouldn’t be progressives in the first place.