When prominent people in Washington spend an anniversary apologizing for being catastrophically, unforgivably wrong about a decade-old decision, you might expect that the decision in question had delivered their party to disaster or defeat. But last month's many Iraq War mea culpas were rich in irony: One by one, prominent liberals lined up to apologize for supporting a war that's responsible for liberalism's current political and cultural ascendance.
History is too contingent to say that, had there been no Iraq invasion in 2003, there would be no Democratic majority in 2012. (It's easy enough to imagine counterfactuals that might have put Hillary Clinton in the Oval Office.) But the Democratic majority that we do have is a majority that the Iraq War created: Its energy and strategies, its leadership and policy goals, and even its cultural advantages were forged in the backlash against George W. Bush's Middle East policies.