On Thursday, actress Angelina Jolie published an opinion piece for The Washington Post arguing that U.S. troops should be allowed to stay in Iraq and provide the security necessary for the United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR) to address the humanitarian crisis in Iraq.
While I’m a bit skeptical of any United Nations undertaking (let’s not forget the track record of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) in funding the ongoing hate education of Palestinian children, and the hundreds of documented cases of sexual abuse of children by UN “peacekeepers” in places like the Congo, Haiti, and Bosnia), to be fair, some branches of the United Nations do some good in the world. This is particularly the case when they are subject to oversight and working in cooperation with other non-governmental organizations and the United States Agency for International Development. (In my work for The New York Daily News I had the opportunity to write about one such successful combined effort).
Hopefully, with the proper oversight, the UNHCR can help the people of Iraq. And as the Wall Street Journal’s James Taranto pointed out today in Best of the Web, Ms. Jolie is articulating a perspective that should inform the views of any genuine humanitarian on the subject of a continued U.S. troop presence in Iraq: U.S. troops are serving as peacekeepers preventing wholesale slaughter.
Ms. Jolie’s stance should serve as a memo to liberals: whatever your views about the decision to liberate Iraq, to support the presence of troops there now is to support whatever hope exists for a democratic and stable Iraq. Most important, the continued troop presence there is protecting innocent civilians.
BTW, it’s not for nothing Ms. Jolie has the brains and character to rise above the lemming-like “bring the troops home yesterday” liberal cant and grasp the more complex reality. She is, after all, the daughter of actor Jon Voight.
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