: In the comments on my post about helping to establish a free press in Iraq with the help of weblogs (below), some of the antiwar hangers-on here reveal something I think it telling in their dismissal of my proposal. One says it’s just dumb. Another suggests we don’t care about democracy there, only invasions. Another says that free speech won’t be allowed under the “re-repression of Iraq.”

What this indicates to me (and to another commenter there) is a tremendous condescension to the Iraqi people (and, of course, to our motives). It indicates part of the problem with those who have opposed this war.

What they are saying, in the end, is that the Iraqis don’t deserve freedom, that they won’t be capable of supporting it, that they were not worth liberating.

My support of our action comes out of my populism. If I believe in the inherent wisdom of the people in this country, I have to believe in the inherent wisdom of the Iraqi people.

Oh, this will take work. These people have not known democracy or free speech or free media (see the item below). But that will be the key to their future. We can offer them no less.

Humanitarian aid starts with food and water. But it doesn’t end there. It must include economic development, academic development, and media development.