The near-unanimous condemnation of the war in Iraq seems to have been built up as a genuine consensus on both sides of the Atlantic. The bad faith and hypocrisy of its detractors is breathtaking. It is as though no one had ever supported the intervention in the first place, which makes such intellectual (im)posturing all the more suspect. Although the Americans are not exempt from criticism, they are nevertheless not condemned to repeating the painful experience of Vietnam. Nothing is less like Vietnam than the Iraq war, starting with the armed forces operating there. Their power, versatility and flexibility are unquestionably the keys to the possibly successful democratisation of Iraq, no matter what the bellicose pacifists found among US Democrats and Europeans think. Moreover, it is very unlikely that American leadership will fade away between the Tigris and the Euphrates.