<center><h2><a href=http://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/20/opinion/20krug.html?pagewanted=print&position=>The Arabian Candidate</a></h2></center> <blockquote>By PAUL KRUGMAN Published: July 20, 2004 In the original version of "The Manchurian Candidate," Senator John Iselin, whom Chinese agents are plotting to put in the White House, is a right-wing demagogue modeled on Senator Joseph McCarthy. As Roger Ebert wrote, the plan is to "use anticommunist hysteria as a cover for a communist takeover." The movie doesn't say what Iselin would have done if the plot had succeeded. Presumably, however, he wouldn't have openly turned traitor. Instead, he would have used his position to undermine national security, while posing as America's staunchest defender against communist evil. So let's imagine an update - not the remake with Denzel Washington, which I haven't seen, but my own version. This time the enemies would be Islamic fanatics, who install as their puppet president a demagogue who poses as the nation's defender against terrorist evildoers. The Arabian candidate wouldn't openly help terrorists. Instead, he would serve their cause while pretending to be their enemy. After an attack, he would strike back at the terrorist base, a necessary action to preserve his image of toughness, but botch the follow-up, allowing the terrorist leaders to escape. Once the public's attention shifted, he would systematically squander the military victory: committing too few soldiers, reneging on promises of economic aid. Soon, warlords would once again rule most of the country, the heroin trade would be booming, and terrorist allies would make a comeback.</blockquote> Well golly, that sounds like what happened with Afghanistan and Iraq. Attack on the terrorist base then, leaving that job uncompleted, Dubbyuh siphoned off all of our troops to Iraq, a country that posed no grave or imminent threat to the US. As a result, the Taliban and Al Qaeda are making a resurgence in Southern Afghanistan and Osama bin Laden remains at large. Osama...The man Dubbyuh pledged to bring to justice...Dubbyuh said he no longer cares where he is...Can you say flip-flop?