There's a fine line
between love and hate
--Over You, T-Bone Burnett
What was it you wanted
Tell me again so I'll know
What's happening in there
What's going on in your show
--What Was it You Wanted?,
Don't spend time beating on a wall,
hoping to transform it into a door
The recent death of an Iraqi interpreter at the hands of his own family belies the dogma of hearts and minds, and seeds of democracy and the American Way.
Winning the hearts and minds of those that hate just will not happen. Hate has no logic or shelf life. Hameed al-Daraji, who had worked as a translator for the U.S. military since 2003, was asleep when shot in the chest and killed by his son and nephew for collaboration with the enemy [the U.S.]. The gunmen are linked to al-Qaida (Son Kills Father Who Translated for the U.S.)
Events like this show there are many hearts and minds that we failed to win. This incident -- not a unique event --shows the level of hatred towards U.S. forces. Why do we want their hearts and minds, anyway? Ranger wouldn't want them even if they could be won, even if they were handed to him like John the Baptist's head on a platter. What would we benefit?
Invasion and destruction of a nation is inimical to the project of winning hearts and minds. To believe otherwise is naive, at best. It is a fantasy to expect love from people filled with hatred, a hatred which is their national identity.
This rule holds fast whether the relationship is personal or national, yet many persist with the mirage. It is the psychopathology of denial. To persist in this folly is also a definition of insanity.