So in light of recent events in Baltimore, a friend dredged up this nugget from the memory hole:
— Murshed Zaheed (@murshedz) April 30, 2015
Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld gave that explanation for the looting in Baghdad at a briefing on April 11, 2003. He followed those remarks by saying:
… freedom’s untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things. They’re also free to live their lives and do wonderful things, and that’s what’s going to happen here.
The task we’ve got ahead of us now is an awkward one, because you have to go from a transition — from a repressed regime to an unrepressed regime that is free to do good things and also do bad things, and we’re going to see both.
Notice how easily the untidiness in Baltimore knocked ISIL, a.k.a. Rumsfeld’s Baby, right off the front pages? Yes, ISIL is that much of an existential threat to America.
The scary thing for Iraq and Syria, however, is that now the media-conscious ISIL will want to do some “bad things” that put them back on the front pages.
(Cross-posted from Hullabaloo.)