Wednesday, April 05, 2006

The madness is complete

Richard Cohen explains his newfound belief that Bush Lied with a nonsequitur. He claims to have doubted the Bush lied meme until he heard the President, responding to Helen Thomas' accusation, deny that he wanted war when he came into office. With that, says Cohen, the last blue-state skeptic folded.

He cites as evidence Richard Clarke's claim that after 9/11, Bush wanted evidence that Saddam was involved. And Richard Clarke is an honorable man. Bob Woodward claims that Bush was fixated on Iraq.

Whether true or not, these reports assume that Iraq was not a logical target once we had overthrown the Taliban. But they ignore the facts that Saddam had been firing missiles at our plains patrolling the no-fly zones regularly ever since those zones were established to prevent Saddam from killing more of his Kurdish and Marsh Arab populations. If this were going to be a confrontation with terrorist-supporting states, where would we start? I've thought about that, and Iraq was the prime candidate. We believed that Saddam had stockpiles of biological WMD; that he was dangerous, and was supplying people like Zarqawi with weapons like ricin, and we knew he would be easier to defeat quickly. We had allies in the area because we had driven him out of Kuwait 12 years earlier. Would these states have supported an invasion of Syria? Could we have taken Iran? It's a bigger country, much harder to occupy. I think that Iraq was a natural choice because we could deliver an oppressed people and rid the world of a truly evil criminal and threat. Certainly none of his neighbors were likely to come to his rescue. He'd attacked two of them and was about due for a third.

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