Thursday, February 13, 2003

What He Said

Roublen Vesseau spelled out in my comments what I've been trying to write:
The reason I'm not gung-ho on war with Iraq is that the Administration refuses to give an estimate on American casualties and on Iraqi casualties. If I got a firm sense from this Administration that they were really going to make an effort to minimize the number of American & Iraqi casualties, and that they expected the number of casualties to be relatively small, I would be for removing Saddam.

Broadly speaking, there are two cases for war with Iraq, the humanitarian case and the national security case. The national security case strikes me as almost wholly unconvincing. The moral case is compelling, but it depends crucially on the likely number of casualties.

1) The best case that can be made for removing Saddam is that it will be good for the Iraqis, most of whom want to see the bastard dead. But a good result depends on not killing a bunch of innocent Iraqis (both civilians and draftees) who never hurt anyone. If a Saddam took charge in the US, I'd love to see someone kick his ass out, but I wouldn't want to see millions of dead Americans in the process (I know, of course, that some dead are inevitable; but also that they can be minimized).

2) One of the biggest problems with backing a war with Iraq is having to trust such a fundamentally dishonest administration with carrying things through. How can we know what to expect when they're so obviously lying to us about almost everything?

3) #1 is why I thought that we should make it stated policy to go after the leadership of the "rogue states" rather than simply killing off their armies of draftees as if poor teenagers were somehow stand-ins for the scumbags themselves. You want to cut down on genocide? Hang Milosevic, the other Serbian leaders, and their counterparts from Rwanda live on CNN. Make it clear that they're not exceptions (yes, I know all the legal/ethical/practical problems with this approach, but it's still far preferable to smart-bombing a few hundred thousand people into graves while their leaders walk).


Tuesday, February 11, 2003

Work in Progress

For the last week, I've been trying to write a piece on the reasons for going to war with Iraq. This is made difficult by several factors:

1) The reasons the Bush administration has stated for war with Iraq have nothing to do with why they really want war with Iraq

2) The reasons the neo-Cons in the administration want to go to war with Iraq are not the same reasons that the good-ole boys in the administration want to go to war with Iraq.

3) The reasons political animals like Karl Rove want war with Iraq aren't related to the reasons in #1 or #2.

4) The reasons Tony Blair, Joe Lieberman, Colin Powell and other non-neo Con, non-good ole boys have for going to war with Iraq aren't related to #1, #2, or #3.

5) There are some legitimate reasons I can think of for war with Iraq, and they're not related to the reasons in #1, #2, or #3 either (but they may be related to the private thinking of those in #4).

So far, all I've been able to write is nonsensical gibberish that sounds like it came from a tech-writer at Microsoft. If I ever get my product into readable form, you'll see it here.

Frankly, this whole thing would be a lot easier if those dishonest bastards in the White House would just drop #1 altogether and explain why they really think war is a good idea.