Jejudo, South Korea
This is all becoming so tedious. It is quite clear to me that the 'anti' Bush/Administration/U.S. (fill in preferred category) folks are beyond convincing. So be it.
What exactly are we trying to be convinced of?
By using that 'fill in preferred category', it seems quite clear that it's the other way around. By anti-Bush, a personal dislike for the man or perhaps, I don't know, a belief a lack of respect for his abilities as a leader? (my opinion, yes and no) By anti-administration, a belief that this administration has mishandled international situations badly? (my opinion, yes) By anti-American, a belief that America is fundamentally corrupt, the belly of the beast, the Great Satan, and its leaders morally equivalent to Hussein, Stalin, Hitler, etc.? (my opinion, no.).
If you can't distinguish among these positions, I have no idea of what exactly am I trying to be convinced of.
But let's take a look at the Hayworth article:
If that's not enough, the liberal critics could also consult another interested party ?our troops. In a heartbreaking story in U.S. News and World Report about the tragic death of Pfc. John E. Brown in Iraq, reporter Julian Barnes writes, "Like many soldiers here, Brown said he wasn't really sure what this fight was about when he crossed the border in Iraq. But once he had made it to Baghdad, he said, he understood. He was in Iraq, he explained, to help the people." That attitude came through in countless television interviews we've all seen over the past few weeks with American and British forces in Iraq.
I have no doubt that if any of us who criticized the Bush administration by using the reported words of a dead soldier, we would be excoriated as having no taste. But this quote is a double edged sword, "Brown didn't know why we were going into Iraq before he went." If he didn't, why should I?
What makes the left's "find WMDs or else" argument even more curious is that for months we were told that the president was constantly changing his rationale for war , going from WMDs to Iraq's link to 9/11 and terrorism to human rights to regime change to introducing democracy into the Arab Middle East and back to WMDs again. The fact is, it was all those reasons, and yet the critics can now remember only one.
That the rational was constantly changing is my criticism of the Bush administration. If it was for all those reasons that we went into Iraq than 1441 and Powell's speech become disingenuous at best.
Furthermore, British PM Tony Blair continually and persuasively made the case for invading Iraq purely on the grounds of the gruesome and threatening nature of Saddam's regime. Does that imply Bush has explaining to do but Blair doesn't?
To me, it does.
That U.S. credibility is lost but Britain's isn't?
Why is this so difficult to see? The more reasons you give, the more reasons you have to back up. When someone says it's for all those reasons, that doesn't mean, "If it's not this then this or this," it means, "It's for this and this and this."
What was that summit with the Spanish president?
Why were some of the supporters of the war unaware that they supported the war?
Yeah, the whole thing look ad hoc and poorly planned. Is this supposed to make me feel more confident in this administration?
That Basra was legitimately liberated but the rest of Iraq wasn't?
Two different questions here, isn't it? What he wants to ask is whether it was wrong to liberate Iraq. He asks instead whether it was legitimate.
In another situation:
Is it wrong to keep a murderer behind bars.
Is it legitimate for a police officer to lie in order to keep a murderer behind bars?
Even more to the point, the real disagreement with France, Germany, Russia, and the rest at the U.N. was that they all thought Saddam's weapons were the problem while the Bush administration thought Saddam himself was the problem.
This is most certainly true, but why didn't he just stick to his guns through the whole thing?
So while the threat to U.S. interests from Saddam was never imminent, it was always inevitable.
And it's that point that was always and is the question. Drop the imminent threat, and how good is Bush's case here? How many inevitable threats are out there?
And let's not forget that WMDs may still be found, if not the actual agents then the facilities to manufacture them, which may be more likely.
Indeed, if Saddam had abandoned his WMDs, then why did he not offer any evidence to that effect and save himself an invasion and get the sanctions on his country lifted?
This is just a bit of selective memory. He did, that's what caused the problems. Blix bought it, Bush didn't.
We knew he was hiding WMDs from inspectors for years. We knew he believed a confrontation with the U.S. was inevitable. And, most important, we knew he would never abandon his quest to obtain nuclear weapons as long as he was in power. Given this knowledge, not taking action would have been a dereliction.
True enough, but that doesn't justify the timing.
The antiwar critics who want the Bush administration to admit it was wrong about Iraq's WMDs will never admit that they were wrong about their dire predictions of how the war would play out. So their politically motivated attacks have about as much seriousness now as the discredited predictions they made before the war.
Um, who made any dire predictions? Who thought the war would have gone differently? The cheers and dances were questioned (Edward Said said something like this and blamed, of all people, Bernard Lewis. Boy, when someone has an ax to grind . . . . He's been going after Lewis since the 1970's). Certainly, many people were wrong about that (my opinion, I didn't know). Some Arabs hoped that the war would at least show that Arab might is formidable and they were humiliated (though this is a mistake, Arabs weren't humiliated, dictatorships were).
But who thought America was going to lose this war? Sure, there was a lot of second guessing going on during the war, but no one that I can remember expressly stated that Iraq would win.
Perhaps, he's referring to the problem inherent in Iraq itself, its relationship with Iran and Turkey, the inherent inability to predict what's going to happen next?
If so, that hasn't exactly played itself out yet either. Before trumpeting this administration, perhaps we should wait and see what happens?
But then we wouldn't have much to talk about then, would we?
[This message has been edited by Brad (05-01-2003 04:40 PM).]