Monday, September 16, 2002

Josh Marshall on those who Sully the debate. He's right of course - Bush did submit to his critics, domestic and international, and it's ridiculous to pretend otherwise. That doesn't mean he's given in to a caricature of his critics being swatted around which has them being against war in Iraq under any circumstances. There are those people, of course, but they aren't the ones who are really a part of this public debate. And, sure, some people really don't think we should be going to war might be using the U.N./inspections issue as a cover. But, on the whole, most critics, from Kissinger on one end to Ritter on the other, have said we need to involve the international community, we need to push for inspections, and when all else fails perhaps war is necessary.

To paint a picture of Bush snookering his critics requires making the point that Bush himself is being dishonest - that war will happen regardless, and the rest is just show. That might be true, but it isn't exactly an impressive portrait.