Afghanistan,  Vote 2012

Credit to Eastwood

I know I promised not to speak of Clint Eastwood’s remarkable performance Thursday at the Republican convention, but I do want to give him credit for one thing: he was, as far as I know, the only speaker to mention the war in Afghanistan.

The renowned filmmaker suggested that invading Afghanistan was a foolhardy decision and teased Obama for it, even though it began under Bush.

“You thought the war in Afghanistan was OK. You know, I mean, you thought that was something worth doing. We didn’t check with the Russians to see how they did there for 10 years,” Eastwood said to great laughter.

Then, talking about Obama’s schedule for bringing troops home by the end of 2014, Eastwood said the sensible question was, “Why don’t you just bring them home tomorrow morning?”

The quip earned him applause and cheers.

What’s noteworthy here isn’t so much what Eastwood said but how the Republican delegates reacted.

Obama was hardly the only American who “thought the war in Afghanistan was OK.” As I recall– outside of a relative handful on the “anti-imperialist” Left and the isolationist Right– almost all Americans thought it was OK.

In the US House of Representatives, the vote to authorize the use of military force in Afghanistan was 420 to 1. In the Senate the vote was 98 to 0.

And why did the Republicans cheer when Eastwood called on Obama to bring home US troops “tomorrow morning”? Did it take a movie tough guy to bring out their inner dovishness?