Conventional Wisdom Watch

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Mainstream hawkish pundits rarely have a change of heart that leads them fully into the withdrawal camp.  They’ll often get to the point where they hem and haw a bit, explaining all the downsides of continued engagement and the longs odds against success, but then they’ll conclude with either a reluctant insistence that we have to keep on fighting anyway, or else a murky affirmation that there’s no good choice to be had, just a least bad one.

But Afghanistan is changing that.  Tom Friedman has now joined George Will in flatly recommending that we leave.  “China, Russia and Al Qaeda all love the idea of America doing a long, slow bleed in Afghanistan,” he says today. “I don’t.”  The conventional wisdom is slowly but surely shifting before our eyes.

So who will be the next bigfoot pundit to jump ship?  Vote in comments.

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily bluster—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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