Saturday, July 12, 2003

Regarding Those Forgeries: How Crude Were They?

uggabugga has the lowdown.

And don't miss the uggabugga take on George W's take on another George W.

Back in September 2002, which was the year, you will remember, when the SOTU contained that magical phrase, "the axis of evil," and the months since had been filled with Bush doctrine-we don't need no stinking allies-war with Iraq talk, Quiddity considered all, and I do mean all the possible consequences of such a war, from "world-wide recession" to "Richard Perle happy."

Looking back at those expectations from a post-war perspective, what strikes me first is how many of the questions that made war doubters doubtful, have turned out to be the very ones the Bush administration neither asked nor answered, and should have.

It's also quite true that many of the items on the war doubters' lists of bad consequences didn't happen, as Bush supporters have been pointing out with great relish. Fair enough say I. Except when they pretend that all anti-war opinion maintained the same list, and universally predicted that each and every item on the list was bound to happen, which is not true.

But let's take a closer look at the predicted bad outcomes that didn't happen. Saddam didn't use any of those WMD, or attack Israel; there were no massive movements of refugees, Iraqis were loyal to their homes if not to their government; Iran and Syria stayed out; the Iraqi armed forces, including the Republican guard, despite sporadic intense fighting, readily collapsed, deserting rather than defending Baghdad.

Now ask yourself, which of those dogs that didn't bark is really an argument that Saddam's hold on power was so secure that a massive land and air invasion, whose objective was for our armed forces to take over their country, call it liberation if you must, was really the only way to help the Iraqi people to rid themselves of Saddam?