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What will it take for you to admit you were wrong about Iraq(77 posts)

What will it take for you to admit you were wrong about IraqLen J
Jan 29, 2004 10:01 AM
What will it take for you to admit you were wrong about the war in Iraq?

It seems clear that most of us think we know what happened in the decision to invade Iraq. The truth is, we may never really know.

I was thinking about this last night and asked myself what would change my mind.

For me, If the following two things occured, I would admit that my misgivings about invading Iraq were incorrect and the administration was correct.

1.) Finding Deployable WMD hidden in Iraq and evidence that the program had been accelerated. &

2.) Really turning over control of the future of Iraq to the will of the Iraqie people on June 30 even if we don't think they are ready (thus demonstrating that we are not empire building).

How about you?

What do you currently believe about the justification for the War? &

What would have to happen for you to admit publically that you were wrong?

Let's see how open minded we are.

Len
Evidence of Iraq xferring WMDs to terrorists...PdxMark
Jan 29, 2004 10:32 AM
Or planning to transfer WMDs to terrorists.

WMDs alone don't do it for me since we knew Iraq once had them, and even supported Iraqi development of them. For me, Iraqi WMDs or WMD know-how being transferred to terrorist organizations would be a justifiable threat to the US.
agreegtx
Jan 29, 2004 11:04 AM
but no one has ever made that link.

This war just grew out of a policy/strategy that started with the same bunch of crooks under Reagan.
I just did a search for this board's discussion the dayOldEdScott
Jan 29, 2004 10:39 AM
after the Cincinnati speech. It's a frozen snapshot of the impression folks had of the speech, and many of the same folks arguing here today were present back then.

Anyone who wonders whether WMDs was THE issue supposedly driving the war might find the discussion captured here interesting.

I won't comment further. Res ipse loquitor.

rwbadley "So, did President Bush change your mind or reinforce..." 10/11/02 8:42am
I feel pretty much the same today as thenColnagoFE
Jan 29, 2004 10:59 AM
Bush never proved to me that we were in clear and present danger. And since time has passed I think I was correct. We never were in danger. Bush willfully lied about the WMD as an excuse to get the UN to go along with his vendetta against Saddam and to insure a US presence in the mideast by setting up a friendlier puppet government (at least until the person they install gets a taste of power and goes against us like Saddam did).
didn't see much concern for the poor iraqi peoplerufus
Jan 29, 2004 11:06 AM
and how we had to do it to free them from such a bad man.
truegtx
Jan 29, 2004 11:11 AM
But are they better off now? The CIA is reporting they are close to civil war.
Oh puhleeze... such selective humanitarianism is cynicalPdxMark
Jan 29, 2004 11:22 AM
If oppression by brutal dictators is the issue, what about the peoples of:

North Korea, who besides being oppressed and brutalized are starving too

Myanmar, where all semblence of civil law was stomped out by a junta

Any number of central African countries, where brutal tribalism in government leads to starvation and incessant cival war

A couple former Soviet republics that have degenerated to a near Stalinist form of government.

Cuba, with which we've been at a low grade state of war (called an embargo) for decades

Or good old Communist China...

Please stop pretending that it's about the people of Iraq. If you need to maintain that fantasy, please explain why the other oppressed peoples do NOT warrant our intervention. Oh, and remember, you need do so without the crutch that Iraq was also a threat to the US because of its WMDs.
oops - I mis-read your post rufus nmPdxMark
Jan 29, 2004 11:24 AM
HA HA HA! reminds me of the day you reamed me! nmOldEdScott
Jan 29, 2004 11:26 AM
A few thousand folks in NY, PA & VA coming back to life. nmMB1
Jan 29, 2004 11:04 AM
what's the connection?gtx
Jan 29, 2004 11:07 AM
Using that logic we should've invaded Saudi Arabia instead.
That's the point. Read original question.Spoiler
Jan 29, 2004 11:40 AM
In other words, nothing, no logic, no reason, no evidence, no testimony, and no amount of dead soldiers will change the minds of Bush or his supporters. When he says stay the course, he doesn't mean stay the course as long as it works, or stay the course as long as it's what the American people want. He means stay the course even is it leads to complete destruction. Staying the/his course is more important than what the outcome is. It's kind of a sick version of
"It's not about the destination, it's about the journey."
So, if it were conclusivly proven........Len J
Jan 29, 2004 11:28 AM
that there was no link between SH and Al Quida in the WTC disaster, you would be against the invasion?

Len
No since the invasion already happened. I would just be wrong. nmMB1
Jan 29, 2004 11:44 AM
what do you mean "if" it were conclusively proven?MJ
Jan 30, 2004 12:54 AM
doesn't everyone know the two aren't linked? anyways surely the conclsuive proof should be to provide the link...

I can't believe that anyone seriously thinks like this
A few thousand folks in Iraq could say the same thingRoyGBiv
Jan 29, 2004 12:04 PM
Not to mention a few thousand folks in Vietnam, Chile, Central America ...
Too late.czardonic
Jan 29, 2004 11:09 AM
It is too late for the Bush Administration's claims to be vindicated by the unearthing of some hidden cache of WMDs. They said they knew with certaintly what was there and they knew with certaintly where it was. The Administration's defenders insisted that the Administration must know things that we don't, and that in due time this evidence would be revealed. They can claim that what they only "knew" was "known" by previous administrations, but the certainty with which they promoted this "knowledge" was a lie.

When it became clear that the WMD claims were hyped, war supporters retreated to the position that it was not WMD's but Iraqi liberty that was the primary motive. But here too, it was too late. The Administration's preparations for the humanitarian and political aftermath of the war belied this claim.

Of course, it is not too late for Iraq to becomse a peaceful country shaped by its own self-determination. Unfortuntely, with the Bush Administration unable to deliver prosperity and unity to its own country, where it is not too late, it may be too little.
It's interesting that I've heard from the Anti-war side........Len J
Jan 29, 2004 11:16 AM
but none of the pro Administration seems willing to indicate what would have to happen for mthem to admit they may have been wrong.

What does that say?

Len
Hell, what else could HAPPEN? If they haven'tOldEdScott
Jan 29, 2004 11:25 AM
admitted it already, in the face of all that's transpired, God Herself couldn't make them.
Part of me agrees, but...........Len J
Jan 29, 2004 11:34 AM
I was hoping that people had a "Tipping Point".

I didn't support the war. But I honestly hoped my misgivings were wrong. I do believe that there are things worth fighting for. I was hoping that I would be proven wrong.

I guess some people can only see one possibility in anything.

Len
Looks like a 5 man limp bisquit party to me. nmNo_sprint
Jan 29, 2004 11:44 AM
Because some of us have been proven right...TJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 11:46 AM
I thought about the question, but couldn't come up with a suitably ridiculous construct under which I would say I was wrong.

I would admit I was wrong if, upon invasion, US troops had found a country with oil wealth spread among the people, no famine, no oppression, and generally happy people who universally loved their form of government. Then, I would have been wrong.

But that's not what they found.

And I've always maintained that WMDs didn't make or break the case for me, the imminence of the threat of SH didn't make or break the case for me - the humanitarian conditions alone in Iraq were enough to warrant the war. Some people don't agree with that, and that's fine, but that doesn't make everybody who supported the war "wrong".
This just in....bboc
Jan 29, 2004 11:52 AM
War Supporters Grasping at Straws! News at 11
You obviously aren't a Bush supporter.czardonic
Jan 29, 2004 11:54 AM
That is, if humanitarian conditions motivate you.
I'm not a Bush supporter, but I am a war supporterTJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 12:03 PM
I generally don't blindly support politicians, rather the policies they enact. And on the whole, I'm not thrilled with the President.

But I do think the war was the right thing, even if it was for a different reason than most.
Fine. But the Len J's follow-up. . .czardonic
Jan 29, 2004 12:31 PM
. . .referred to those who are "pro Administration", and by (my) extension, supported the war based on the Adminstration's "case".
TJ, so why don't we go after the other...PdxMark
Jan 29, 2004 11:55 AM
regimes that are humanitarian nightmares? Why stop at Iraq?
Prediction: TJ will advocate doing just that.czardonic
Jan 29, 2004 11:57 AM
Slippery devil.
Have before, will again; I vote for Zimbabwe next (nm)TJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 12:00 PM
This isn't a new position for me, either.
I'm sure Bush is already on the case. . .czardonic
Jan 29, 2004 12:07 PM
. . .figuring out a way to manipulate the American people into signing on to his humanitarian invasion of Africa.
You know who is selling "yellow cake" uranium...TJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 12:11 PM
Kidding, of course...
Fair enough...PdxMark
Jan 29, 2004 12:14 PM
and a perfectly consistent response. You might be even more liberal than me!

Of course, the we'd need alot more than the 3rd ID in Zimbabwe, and there'd be lots more casualties too.
That's the problem,TJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 12:20 PM
If you're actually the guy making these calls, you have to figure that Iraq is an easier country to "liberate" than, say, Rwanda. It's a nasty cost/benefit situation.
Ahh, opportunistic invasion..........Len J
Jan 29, 2004 12:32 PM
(tongue firmly in cheek).

So the pre-invasion checklist is something like this:

1.) Is the country easy to conquer? Check
2.) Does the country have human rights problems? Check
3.) Are there any other interests that might be affected? No

Then I guess we invade.

So TJ, who do you think is next?

Len
I think it's more (2) (3) (1)TJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 12:48 PM
I'm not sure who is next.

I think North Korea is still technically in-process. I would have said Morrocco, but their new King has made overtures to turn things around.
I could get behind this...PdxMark
Jan 29, 2004 1:08 PM
I agree about the cost-benefit analysis. At one simplistic level it could come down to "desert places are easy enough, jungle places are too hard, and northern hemispheric places are possible," but that's just the reality of what we can do afforably, in terms of casualties and the numbers of troops required.

I agree that use of force for humanitarian reasons can readily be justified, particularly if our potential costs are low and the benefits are high. That's why I think Bosnia & Kosovo were appropriate actions. Somalia would have been OK, and successful, if we hadn't tried to do more than we were equipped to do there.

North Korea meets the benefit side, but the potential costs are probably too great, particularly if you're South Korean. Morrocco would have been a deserving place, and would have the added benefit of particularly offending the French. (That's a joke.)

Justifying Iraq on humanitarian grounds, with follow-up actions in other places where we can sweep away brutal regimes with resonable risk, seems like a reasonable and laudable policy objective.

The only problem is that 99.999999% (I think that's the right number of 9s) of the other people justifying the Iraq war on humanitarian grounds would be unwilling to follow through in other places. It is their commitment to humanitarian justice US military action that I doubt.
Humanitarian reasons were not the primary justification for IraqLen J
Jan 30, 2004 5:55 AM
But I agree with you in principle.

If we were consistent in it's application, but we are not.

Len
worked for reagan in grenada and panama. nmrufus
Jan 29, 2004 2:53 PM
So you were not "right" either.eyebob
Jan 29, 2004 12:01 PM
It was a (real) given that some of the people were repressed. If you supported the war for your humanitarian reasons then the fact that the repression was fact and the people have been liberated isn't being "right" just like supporting it for the same reasons wasn't "wrong."

Question. Suppose that the oppressors (as an ethnic/politico group) become oppressed. Are you still "right?"

BT

By-the-by, regime change for humanitarian reasons may indeed be just (IMHO) I'm just not sure that there wasn't a better way to go about it.
I don't really understand your statementTJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 12:09 PM
For some reason, I just can't decipher what you're trying to say.

If I understand you're question, it's: what if the Shiites take over and do nasty things to the Sunnis? The answer is that this would be bad, and we should try to stop it. That doesn't mean the initial intervention was wrong. Watching idly while people are oppressed and otherwise abused is wrong.

As far as: was this the best way to do it? I don't know. The other way, economic sanctions, seemed to be not only not working to remove Hussein, but actively working against the very people you'd like to help. So, I think the sanctions were a good try, but it came time for more direct action.
pretzel logic128
Jan 29, 2004 12:04 PM
the war proved right, what you already knew?

You're entitled to your opinion re humanitarianism, but the issue is how the war was 'sold' on a policy level.
The question wasn't about how the war was "sold"TJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 12:15 PM
The question was, what would it take for you to change your opinion on the war?

My answer was that the Bush Administration was lying about living conditions in Iraq. This is possible. I've never been to Iraq to verify how bad it was. Maybe it was all roses and strawberries, and the CIA was misleading me just for a justification to go to war.

If that were the case, my opinion would change.
Point taken. Implicit in the question is what BushCo. LLC,128
Jan 29, 2004 12:29 PM
sold you.

You suggest what you needed to change your mind was what you propose they may have lied about; the basis for war.

But now I get it; could have been a party going over there.
Point taken. Implicit in the question is what BushCo. LLC,TJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 12:36 PM
Except that I would have to be convinced that they were purposely misleading. And I'm not sure Bush et. al. were misleading the public on purpose. I think they really did believe there were WMD. Per the New York Times yesterday, I think Saddam Hussein believed he had WMD. It would be comedy if real lives weren't involved.
So where does the buck stop then?ColnagoFE
Jan 29, 2004 1:01 PM
So we may never know whether Bush and Co intentionally lied, but who gets "fired" in this situation? The US public and the UN was sold a bill of goods to justify this invasion. Someone has to be at fault. If the president knew he was lying then it's him. If he was operating on bad advice from the CIA or someone high up on his staff then someone there should be held accountable. How about putting Bush on the stand like we did with Clinton and seeing what he says?
You give george too much credit.MR_GRUMPY
Jan 29, 2004 1:35 PM
I can just picture it in my mind:
Sept 12, 2001
Dick: george, what have I been telling you about Saddam. I'm sure he's been in thing since the get-go. It's about time that we free up all that Oi....... I mean Iraqi people.
george: I ddon't know Dick...What should I do?
Dick: It's time to start planning today. We can't count on those bastard Frogs to help. They'll want too big a cut of the profi......I mean Glory of freeing those poor Iraqis.
An honest question53T
Jan 29, 2004 1:36 PM
Colnago, you seem to be a true believer of the "bill of goods" theory of administration evil. Could you explain to me what process is used to "justify" the war?

I can understand the UN being hoodwinked, but then again they choose to NOT take the bait, and did not vote an additional resolution, as requested. Furthermore, the Congress took no significant action based on any strong arguments of WMD, etc. The Congressional authorization for the use of force pre-dates the full court press on WMD by several months.

I do not have the benifit of a liberal bias, in fact I have a conservative bias. This leaves me with a bothersome lack of understanding of the "bill of goods" argument. If I accept all the facts as true (SH had no WDM, the administration knew it, it's all about oil, etc.) I still don't see the logic of the argument. For example, Assume W lied in a speach on TV, furthermore assume Powell lied at the UN, therefore what? Did someone, somewhere do something important based on those lies? The UN did not, the Congress did not. The troops did something important, but they would have anyway. We the people did not get a chance to vote on anything. In summary, what are the consequences of these alleged lies? If the administration had said nothing would not the result have been the same?

My lack of understanding would not be so bad if the central argument were not so prevelant in the media, on the forums, and in the general population.

Please, help me out.
So it's OK for the administration to lie to the public?ColnagoFE
Jan 29, 2004 2:10 PM
I don't get your point. I think if GWB would have said there are no WMD and Saddam is not an imminent threat, but we still want to invade then the UN and the public would not have been behind him nearly as much and he may not have ordered the invasion. We may have avoided full-scale war and worked at peaceful diplomatic efforts for some time. Might have saved lots of lives on both sides. Armchair quarterbacking on my part of course, but you never know what could have been if we had the "real" facts instead of the GWB BS we were told.
Do you think GWB had the "real" facts? (nm)TJeanloz
Jan 29, 2004 2:16 PM
As it's recently been postulated that Hussein himself didn't have the "real" facts, do we think that GWB was all-knowing?
Not sure...but if not, he shouldn't have said anythingColnagoFE
Jan 29, 2004 2:21 PM
I'm not saying the President has to be all-knowing, but when you come right out and say that they have WMD and are an imminent threat you better have something more to back it up with than a hunch or wishful thinking. The lives of innocent Iraqi citizens and our own armed forces were/are at stake. If the CIA screwed up then that should be brought to light. Someone has to have been accountable for the misinformation. If not Bush, then who? If it was just a wild guess on his administration's part then he should fess up, admit it, and accept the consequences.
Exactly53T
Jan 29, 2004 2:28 PM
That's what I'm getting at. What would have happened if we had a different set of administration assertations? The public may have been less supportive of a full scale invasion. But so what? I don't see any opportunity for the public to weigh in on this issue directly. Cangress, the public's representatives, did nothing significant in response to the media campaign.

Are you suggesting that the public might have followed some extra-legal course in response to the administrations plans to invade without suspision of WMD's? An impeachment? A recall? A revolution?

It is almost as if you are suggesting that the ABC-USA Today opinion poll could have influenced adminstration policy. The Clinton administration was accused of such fikleness, but I have heard no such characterization of the current administration. Quite the contrary, W and friends have been accused of not giving a crap about what the public thinks.

In summary, are you saying that a swing in public opinion could have changed W's mind about invading? If that is the case, the democrats arguments could be silenced by the adminstration simply assuring the democrats that they truly don't care about public opinion in these matters. That's not too hard to believe.
Whoa nelly.............Len J
Jan 30, 2004 6:07 AM
you're missing a hugh part of US Politics.

If you can't convinve the American public to support a war, you are not going to be able to sustain the effort....Look at Vietnam.

Let's pretend that the Administration wasn't sure about the WMD, and couldn't link SH with Al Quida (Which after all is what had us in a "Go to War" attitude in the first place). The only leg left to justify the invasion is the saving of the Iraqi people.

Going into the war, Polls showed almost a 70% support rate for the war. Without WMD & Al Quida link, I suspect that that number would have dropped, maybe dramatically. I suspect that Bush would have realized he couldn't sell it on Humanatiarian reasons alone (Although I agree with TJ that that might have been enough for me). Bush is nothing if not a political animal and, as such, would not have risked pushing for a war unless he was sure he had the US Public support.

That's what would have been different.

Len
I know politics53T
Jan 30, 2004 9:22 AM
W knew that whatever happened in Iraq, he would be held responsible in the 2004 election. He knew that if WMD was a bald-faced lie that it would pretty well ruin his 2004 chances. He also knew that a poor outcome in the desert would ruin his reelection bid.

With all that in mind, he went with the WMD story. Now what would have been the reelection risk if he had 40% approval for the war and invaded anyway? I say, it would have been the same.

The whole WMD argument was designed to get an additional resolution from the UN. Germany and France said stuff it. And you wonder why these euro-dorks can't bid on reconstruction contracts? If W wins in November (any one care to bet?) the hurt that will be put on Germany and France will threaten the foundations of the EU. Mark my words.
This was the point I tried (and failed) to make. (nm)eyebob
Jan 29, 2004 12:47 PM
Fair enough........Len J
Jan 29, 2004 12:13 PM
you have been consistent in that regard.

So it follows that if Bush wanted to invade China, or North Korea, or Saudia Arabia, you would be 100% behind him?

Len
There isn't a Pro-Administration group. They went home. nmSpunout
Jan 30, 2004 5:05 AM
If my opinion was based solely on WMDs ...HouseMoney
Jan 29, 2004 12:01 PM
... you might ... might ... get a mea culpa from me. My feelings in re what needed (IMO) to be done in Iraq go beyond WMDs. Even as to WMDs, there are enough unanswered questions where I'm not ready to close that book yet.

I felt Clinton was justified in his missile attacks on Iraq, too. (fwiw) Removing Saddam from power, to me, was a non-partisan issue.
prove Iraq never invaded Kuwait, I'll admit I'm wrong nmContinental
Jan 29, 2004 12:05 PM
So this Iraq War was a continuation of Gulf War 1?PdxMark
Jan 29, 2004 1:14 PM
Wow. That's a whole new justification. Congratulations.

We fought a justified war in 1991 to drive Iraq from Kuwait. Eleven years later we launch a new war over that same Kuwaiti invasion? So does that mean that 41 was wrong to end GW1 when he did, or does it mean that Iraq's invasion of Kuwait justifies any subsequent war against Iraq for all time?

For extra credit, what significant military risk did Iraq pose to any of it's neighbors after GW1?
Not a new claim, but not one paid much attention.dr hoo
Jan 29, 2004 1:36 PM
The Bush administration claimed that they could invade under the authority granted for the first gulf war. They did so before the invasion.

You can say it is a weak claim, but it is not a new claim.
Yes, Since Iraq broke surrender terms.Continental
Jan 29, 2004 1:41 PM
Kuwait proved that Saddam was an insatiable aggressor. He broke a long list of surrender terms and multiple UN resolutions, both in spirit and in fact which alone justified the 2nd war. Most Dems and Reps agreed that regime change was necessary. War is the most certain way to achieve regime change.

Given time and a blind eye from the U.S., Iraq doubtlessly would have posed risks to it's neighbors and possibly to th U.S. It would have been the height of folly to leave Saddam in power and hope he behaved when we know he wanted to rule the mideast, assassinate Bush 41, and eliminate Kurds and Shiites.

41 took a risk that Saddam would not retain power after the war. In retrospect 41 was wrong to end the war.

For the record, I don't like Bush II.
Like him or not, you kinda sound like him.czardonic
Jan 29, 2004 4:53 PM
  • "War is the most certain way to achieve regime change."
  • "Given time and a blind eye from the U.S., Iraq doubtlessly would have posed risks to it's neighbors and possibly to th U.S"

    Specious reasoning and sound-byte caliber logic.
  • Entire cities and civilizations have disappeared in the desertsLive Steam
    Jan 29, 2004 12:35 PM
    of the Middle East only to be unearthed centuries later. It wouldn't surprise me if WMD are found decades down the road. I have never doubted their existence and still don't. Neither did most of the rest of the World doubt their existence until Saddam was ousted just a few short months ago - and that is only because they haven't been discovered yet.

    WMD was only a portion of the reason I supported the war. So whether or not they are found, is irrelevant to me. We are certain that he coveted them and would try to obtain them when ever possible. He had two sons with the same ambition. They would be around for many more decades if the war didn't take place. Additionally, one must wonder what he was planning on doing with all the money he was stealing from the Iraqi people. He sure as heck wasn't planning a retirement account. He didn't plan on retiring and neither did his sons. So I have no regrets about the war or ousting Saddam.
    I take it you missed Kay's appearance yesterday.czardonic
    Jan 29, 2004 12:47 PM
    He explained his belief that there are no significant caches of WMDs is not simply based on the fact that we can't find them. Not only has evidence of their existance not been found, but evidence of their creation and maintenance is also absent.

    Whether Saddam coveted WMDs is irrelevant, unless you are arguing that CrimeThink was reason enough for a wild goose chase that cost thousands of American and Iraqi casualties. The issue is whether he could obtain and deploy them. It does not appear that he could as long as the UN and US had him boxed in.
    Well yes it would be reason enough. People go to ....Live Steam
    Jan 29, 2004 12:59 PM
    jail for similar reasons. However, David Kay also said he does believe that some WMD were transported out of the country and or passed off to others. He also stated that Saddam and Sons were questioning how long it would take to reinstitution WMD programs that had been shelved. He must have thought he could get away with something, knowing that inspections would continue to be demanded by the UN Security Council. He was a megalomaniac. I don't see the loss in ridding him from the World. Yes there is loss of life. That is tragic and unfortunate. However, maybe, just maybe more lives have been spared as a result.
    Maybe. Or maybe it was a huge waste.czardonic
    Jan 29, 2004 1:53 PM
    I'd like to know either way with some reasonable degree of certainty.
    Faith is a beautiful thing...PdxMark
    Jan 29, 2004 1:22 PM
    It's a testament to your faithfulness that you'll believe in the existence of WMDs that even GWB is beginning to distance himself from.

    As for the "Saddam & Co. are bad" justification, are you willing to apply that as a basis for US military action in other places? There are other rulers who are just as brutal as Saddam, and many of them have stolen billions of dollars from their peoples too. If so, I commend your humanitarian spirit. If not, your hypocrisy stands with your faithfulness as an entertaining glimpse into blind political devotion to All Things 43.
    Yes - and I have.Live Steam
    Jan 29, 2004 7:58 PM
    I supported Bubba in Bosnia because it was the right thing to do. I would support similar efforts to those in Bosnia and even the same type of action that was used in Iraq, to oust brutal dictatorships over suppressed people in other countries. However, Iraq presented another factor that I know every person who dislikes Bush and who wants a Democrat as president, is denying. That is Iraq was an immanent threat to US security. The Democrats were lobbying for Bubba to launch an attack against Iraq back in 1998. Clinton tried a similar bombing raid as was done in Bosnia, but there was no way of knowing how effective it was.

    If Iraq had WMD or the capabilities to produce WMD, that should be and was considered a direct threat to the US given the state of affairs after 9/11, before 9/11 and even now. He was an admitted enemy of the US. He attempted to have a US president assassinated. He would have no problem assisting any party interested in perpetrating an act of terror against a US interest. It is undeniable that he would have no qualms providing weapons to agents that would use them against US interests. Whether the threat was immediately immanent , meaning within months, or was immanent within a few years doesn't matter. He needed to be dealt with as soon as possible. Heck, dealing with him was delayed more than a decade. How much longer was it prudent to put it off with 9/11 in consideration?
    Yes - and I have.rufus
    Jan 30, 2004 8:31 AM
    "He would have no problem assisting any party interested in perpetrating an act of terror against a US interest. It is undeniable that he would have no qualms providing weapons to agents that would use them against US interests"

    well, this is certainly open for conjecture. woulkd he be interested in helping parties perpetrate terror against israel? probably. directly against the united states? where is your evidence to support this view?
    The evidence is he tried to assassinate a US president nmLive Steam
    Jan 30, 2004 10:18 AM
    It would take a lot.dr hoo
    Jan 29, 2004 1:32 PM
    I was against the invasion at this time in this way. I was much more on the "contain and inspect" end of the argument. I saw 3 big downsides for the invasion long term.

    1- destabilizing Iraq, and creating a potential fundamentalist regime.

    2- increase in terrorism world wide, due to vastly increased recruits against the "American imperialists".

    3- destabilizing the middle east, leading to an increase in violence in the middle east. Potential for "hot war" breaking out.

    Note, nothing about deaths, nothing about getting "bogged down" in a long occupation.

    So, for me to be proven wrong I would need to see evidence of the following after 5 years (so, I give it 4.5 more years before I can know)...

    1- a stable civil government in Iraq. I will even say a democracy is not necessary, just a stable government, for success on this point.

    2- a decrease in terrorism from middle east/muslim extremists. If the US gets hit, bad. But I consider an increase in other parts of the world to be bad as well.

    3- a more peaceful region.

    I don't see much hope of these happening.

    The decision to go in, and the (mis)planning of the aftermath were poorly made. I really don't think that AT THIS POINT my judgement on that can change. However, if things improve because of the invasion and aftermath I would have to say the actions made things better long term, and that I would be on balance wrong in my assessment of the worthiness of the enterprise.

    I do see many positives of invading Afganistan (even though the aftermath is being bungled, imo) but I see few benefits to adding the Iraq invasion to that. I see many drawbacks.

    We'll see in the next 4+ years.
    Some killer weed, a bottle of whisky and a gun to my headStarliner
    Jan 29, 2004 1:38 PM
    I opposed the war from way back for reasons that have unfortunately been validated. So to admit I was wrong would take some pretty serious events to occur:

    - Iraqi citizens set aside their differences between each other and in a united front, they faithfully support our current rebuilding process; giving us no more car bombings or such trouble along the way, and replacing that stuff with obedience and willingness. Refer to post-WWII Japan.

    - A smooth transfer of power to a stable, friendly government fully supported by the people and free of religious meddling.

    - The new Iraq is recognized by all countries around the region.

    - The chill between Iran and USA thaws, with Iran pledging non-confrontational friendly support for their good neighbor Iraq.

    - Terrorism wanes measurably around the world, and the Israeli problem suddenly starts progressing towards a solution palatable to the Palestinians.

    - George Bush wins the Nobel Peace Prize.
    man talk about a rich fantasy life!ColnagoFE
    Jan 29, 2004 2:15 PM
    I think I'd have to be tripping on 100 hits of blotter acid to even think that stuff might happen.
    Two out of three ain't bad.............nmrwbadley
    Jan 29, 2004 5:20 PM
    If all circumstances remained the same but thereNo_sprint
    Jan 29, 2004 2:29 PM
    was no bucking of any promise made to the UN.

    Had the maniac complied, we wouldn't have gone in.
    Complied with what?czardonic
    Jan 29, 2004 2:32 PM
    "What we demanded of Iraq was that they prove the negative of our hypothesis." - Colin Powell