The Low Bar

Peter Bergen argues that the intervention in Libya is no invasion of Iraq:

But the military intervention that President Obama authorized against Libya on Saturday — eight years to the day after President George W. Bush announced the commencement of “Operation Iraqi Freedom” — is a quite different operation than the 2003 invasion of Iraq. Beyond the obvious difference that Obama has not authorized the use of U.S. ground forces in Libya, there are several other differences to consider:

Granting all that follows for the sake of argument, isn’t this a strange way for Iraq to impact the structure of debate? Is “less misguided than the invasion of Iraq” really a reasonable standard for policy to aspire to? I agree that this should turn out better than Iraq did. But will it turn out better than Somalia? Does it represent a reasonable allocation of resources? “Better than Iraq” is a very low bar for a foreign policy initiative to pass.