Thursday, September 26, 2013

If John Cornyn were at the Alamo


We couldn't resist:
Cornyn: Bi-National Pressure is the best way to defeat Santa Anna

On October 2, 1835, I was a bit player in the Battle of Gonzales (I argued the 'Come and Take It' Flag was too confrontational).

In the months since, I have given lip service to numerous plans to expel the Mexican Army from Texas.

Last week, General Santa Anna crossed the Rio Grande.  The Texas congress subsequently relocated to Washington on the Brazos while continuing to talk about independence.  I supported this tactic.

This isn't a retreat that I hope to obfuscate with rhetorical bluster.  This is a unique and rare opportunity to defeat Santa Anna with a simple majority of all troops on the battlefield.  That means Santa Anna can lose, at most, four brigades from his Army and still succeed in suppressing the Texas revolution.  If Santa Anna loses five, Texas is free.  I want to have that battle.

In my view, fighting to the death at the Alamo is not the best way to defeat Santa Anna.  The only thing it would guarantee is traffic jams in San Antonio, for which the European press would make fun of us.

History has taught us that Texians would unduly shoulder the blame in such a scenario.  This would weaken our party, hurt us at the polls, and remove us even further from our goal of removing Santa Anna.

A polite but firm letter, on the other hand, would force vulnerable border county Mexican commanders to either double down on Santa Anna or move to oppose him.  We need to convince five to take the latter approach.

In my view, sending a joint Texian and Mexican letter is better than sending no letter at all.

It's no secret that centralized government in Mexico is crumbling of its own weight.  The fact that Texas is still debating it six months after the Battle of Gonzales is a testament to how ill-conceived, unpopular, and damaging it is.

Examples of it's failures abound: inflation is rampant, jobs are scarce, people are having trouble getting the bare essentials of life.  All this and centralized control hasn't even been fully implemented yet.

Second chances in life are rare.  For the Mexican commanders who voted for Santa Anna in 1833, this is their second chance.

With the benefit of hindsight and pressure from the Texian people, they now have the opportunity to recant their support with dignity.

And for those Mexicans who insist on riding this train wreck of a law over the cliff, they will have to stand in front of their neighbors and explain why it is worth further degrading our economy.  Texians are united against Santa Anna.  In drafting this letter, we must be united in pressuring our Mexican colleagues to stop listening to President Santa Anna's 1833 campaign rhetoric and start listening to their neighbors.

If they truly do this -- if they sign on along with us -- then I have no doubt that a polite but firm letter to Santa Anna will succeed as well.

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