President Bush and his war against Iraq
If you’re inclined to support President Bush on taking military action against Iraq but your gut is uneasy about this war with Iraq, your gut is right. The uneasiness you feel is not about the U.S. strength abroad-the power of the U.S. military, once unleashed, will no doubt oust Saddam Hussein and completely destroy the Iraqi military. Unfortunately, that tangible apprehension is based on the vague but nagging sense of a dangerous, undeniable truth: most of the arguments that the Bush administration is making are all propaganda.
The Bush administration’s argument is that Saddam has defied the United Nation’s; therefore the U.S. must punish him. And not just with sanctions (which is killing Iraqi citizens everyday), or diplomatic pressure, but with war – even though there is no evidence that he is doing anything to America. In a recent speech, Sen. Robert Byrd, D-W.Va., said “this is no simple attempt to defang a villain. This coming battle, if it materializes, represents a turning point in U.S. foreign policy and possibly a turning point in the recent history of the world. This nation is about to embark upon the first test of a revolutionary doctrine applied in an extraordinary way at an unfortunate time. The doctrine of pre-emption – the idea that the U.S. or any other nation can legitimately attack a nation that is not imminently threatening but may be threatening in the future- is a radical new twist on the traditional idea of self defense.” Personally, I think that the Bush administration is about to set a precedent that will come back to haunt the U.S.
A few weeks ago, the chief UN weapons inspector told the U.S. that he’s found nothing and wants more time. The administration, certain the inspectors won’t find anything, thinks that it all a waste of time. Just find us “material breach” and let roll! After Colin Powell’s presentation to the U.N. Security Council, I asked myself why is the Bush Administration moving so fast? Because Saddam will stall, the same way he’s been stalling for a dozen years. A dozen years, by the way, during which he has attacked no one, gassed no one and launched terror attacks on no one.
Why doesn’t the administration describe it as blackmail when the North Koreans imply their willingness to trade a few atomic bombs for desperately needed economic assistance? They don’t call it a blackmail when Israeli troops are occupying Palestinian territories everyday. I accept the fact that Saddam isn’t interested in negotiations – that he’s eating very well and couldn’t care less that his people are starving or that he’s motivated by some combination of hatred and jealousy of the democratic West.
But, since the Bush administration, has moved all these ships and carriers and troops into place, and they can’t just keep them there indefinitely. Maybe it makes sense to them to go into war. To me it sounds like what William Raspberry said, “I’ve got my gun loaded and cocked, so I may as well shoot somebody.”
Saddam beware the Ides of March. Stay tuned next week for my top ten reasons why going to war with Iraq is wrong.