Forget the war in Iraq, the war on terror, or any other war against which Connecticut citizens are said to have voted by defeating Joe Lieberman and nominating Ned Lamont for the U.S. Senate.
The operative war for American citizens is something closer to home -- a war of independence from the bickering partisans who have made political life in America a childish and tedious exercise.
Democrats aren't wrong when they say that the Lamont victory was a defining moment. It defined the Democratic Party as a vigorous, motivated, organized force that is ... completely out of touch with mainstream America.
Don't get me wrong. Lamont is a perfectly respectable candidate -- well-spoken, attractive, gracious and rich. What's not to like? And millions of Americans of every political stripe are disgusted with the Bush administration's handling of the Iraq War.
But what happened in Connecticut allowed the rest of the country a close glimpse of what the Democratic Party has become -- a ruthless machine of the far left, fueled by left-wing blogs and personified by the stubbornly adolescent Michael Moore.
Their triumph in bringing down Lieberman may prove to be their undoing in November, as well as in the 2008 presidential election. Here's why: Americans may not like the war, or the deficit, or the Bush administration's immigration stance, or pick-your-grievance. We enjoy a surfeit of issues to divide us. But Americans also share a reflexive resistance to Stalinist tactics.
What else can one call the message now being telegraphed to Democratic leaders? You either stand with us against the war in Iraq, or we take you down.
The morning after Lamont's victory, for instance, Moore posted a note on his Web site to Democratic candidates that is a threat without the veil. He specifically targeted Hillary Clinton, John Kerry and John Edwards, all likely presidential candidates in '08.Noting that nearly every Democrat planning to run for president had voted for or supported the war, Moore said, ``we are going to make sure they pay for that mistake. Payback time started last night.''
Even though both Kerry and Edwards have changed their minds and are now anti-war, that's too late for Moore, who wrote: ``Their massive error in judgment is, sadly, proof that they are not fit for the job. They sided with Bush, and for that, they may never enter the promised land.''
To Clinton, he spoke directly: ``I'm here to tell you that you will never make it through the Democratic primaries unless you start now by strongly opposing the war. It is your only hope.''
As for the rest, ``To every Democratic Senator and Congressman who continues to back Bush's War, allow me to inform you that your days in elective office are now numbered. Myself and tens of millions of citizens are going to work hard to actively remove you from any position of power.''
Moore's manifesto, through which he may have lost a few grammarians, is straight out of Stalin's playbook under 'P' for purge. Like Stalin, the operatives who ousted Lieberman are determined to remove dissidents from The Party.
Clinton, among others, snapped to. Looking grim before television cameras, she vowed her allegiance to the party, promising to support Lamont in the general election against Lieberman, who is running as an independent. And though Clinton has resisted calls for a timetable to withdraw troops from Iraq, she recently hammered Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in an apparent attempt to distance herself from the administration.
Flash to Connecticut immediately after the count, and Lamont's victory photo tells the rest of the story. There they were, those two perennial groupies to irrelevancy, the twin reverends Sharpton and Jackson. Heaven forbid a Democrat should give an acceptance speech without their pandered presence.
Lieberman -- admired by centrists and conservatives -- promises to stay his own course as a nonpartisan independent. His decision may be viewed as a blasphemous, punishable offense by the MoveOn/Moore wing of his party, but he's hitting a note that rings true for the times.
The extremes of both parties -- whether the Michael Moore left or Pat Robertson right -- have had their day, and most sensible Americans have had enough of both. The independent candidate, who puts state and country above party, may be the right candidate in this climate, while the Democratic Party -- now fully revealed as a radical, anti-war, far-left party -- may have written its own suicide note.
Working title: ``When Hari Met Kari.''