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  • A genuine question about the rationale for war

    Greetings All,

    I've been following a few of the posts on the subject of the impending war in Iraq, and there's a basic question that has been confusing me somewhat. I don't really want to get embroiled in what seems to often be a quite heated debate, but am genuinely interested in comments/ thoughts from both sides of the debate.

    To start off, I should point out that I come from New Zealand, which is, like the US, a relatively recently independent former British colony. So we have a habit of sitting somewhat in between the US and Europe on international policy matters.

    What's confusing me is the rationale for invading Iraq. It seems to me that the issue of WMDs is at the heart of the matter - does Iraq have them, should they, and if so how should they be disarmed. The thing for me is that historically (with one or two exceptions) WMD have been used primarily as an ultimate deterrent. The concept being that if threatened, the regime could resort to WMDs and kill millions of people, thus making it unattractive for anyone else to attack them.

    In the current Iraq situation it seems strange to me that it is being claimed that Iraq has WMD and that therefore the US must invade them. Surely if Iraq has such capability it would be illogical to attack them, thus putting them into a situation where they're sure to use their WMDs? Taking a look at the situation with North Korea, I see much more of the response that I would expect when dealing with a country with possible WMDs - quick assurances that no invasion is planned, and renewed diplomacy.

    What am I missing here? I guess the possession of WMDs is not the only reason for invading Iraq, but it does seem to be the one in the forefront of most discussion/ media commentary. Or is it the >potential< to acquire WMDs that is the primary reason for an attack.

    Raver

  • #2
    Re: A genuine question about the rationale for war

    Originally posted by Raver

    I've been following a few of the posts on the subject of the impending war in Iraq, and there's a basic question that has been confusing me somewhat. I don't really want to get embroiled in what seems to often be a quite heated debate, but am genuinely interested in comments/ thoughts from both sides of the debate.

    Raver, It's pretty dangerous posting here. Watch out.

    To start off, I should point out that I come from New Zealand, which is, like the US, a relatively recently independent former British colony. So we have a habit of sitting somewhat in between the US and Europe on international policy matters.

    Isn't New Zealand still a colony of Australia.

    What's confusing me is the rationale for invading Iraq. It seems to me that the issue of WMDs is at the heart of the matter - does Iraq have them, should they, and if so how should they be disarmed. The thing for me is that historically (with one or two exceptions) WMD have been used primarily as an ultimate deterrent. The concept being that if threatened, the regime could resort to WMDs and kill millions of people, thus making it unattractive for anyone else to attack them.

    The main reason is that Iraq is a special case. Iraq under the 'leadership' of Saddam Hussein has invaded two neighbors (Iran and Kuwait), killed thousands of innocent Iraqi civilians, and also attacked two additional countries with missiles (Israel and Saudi Arabia). Many other countries had WMD but they don't have the dangerous record of Iraq.

    In the current Iraq situation it seems strange to me that it is being claimed that Iraq has WMD and that therefore the US must invade them. Surely if Iraq has such capability it would be illogical to attack them, thus putting them into a situation where they're sure to use their WMDs? Taking a look at the situation with North Korea, I see much more of the response that I would expect when dealing with a country with possible WMDs - quick assurances that no invasion is planned, and renewed diplomacy.

    The Iraqi regime is very dangerous and predicting what they might do is difficult. They do have ties to terrorist organizations and it becomes a game of chance for the US to wait to see what happens.

    There will be diplomacy with North Korea. However this may or may not work in the end. However Iraq has proven year after year after year to be a case where diplomacy doesn't work.

    What am I missing here? I guess the possession of WMDs is not the only reason for invading Iraq, but it does seem to be the one in the forefront of most discussion/ media commentary. Or is it the >potential< to acquire WMDs that is the primary reason for an attack.

    Saddam would like to create for himself nuclear weapons as well. He is known as the 'dreamer of bloody dreams' and wanted to use Iraq as a springboard to make himself ruler of the Arab world.
    Last edited by Chuck?; 09 Feb 03, 20:37.
    "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

    Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

    Comment


    • #3
      Hello...

      Raver,

      Iraq has possible WMDs, but it's just that Saddam is waiting for the right time to use them. Moreover, it has been proven that Saddam would use chemical and biological weapons on his own people, and if left unattended, Saddam could have developed nuclear capability and used it to prevent America from making some kind of defensive postures. North Korea is much further than Saddam's Iraq in developing nuclear weapons.

      That's what made the invasion of Iraq unique from North Korea situation. In North Korea situation, North Korean Army could flatten the city of Seoul with 300,000 shells in an hour since it has artillery pieces spread out along the DMZ. There is no way for America to prevent that kind of disaster. Millions of lives would be lost. Moreover, we couldn't be sure of North Korea's nuclear capability even if America managed to knock out most of the nuclear facilities in North Korea.

      If we move to oust Saddam quickly, then Iraq would be prevented from using nuclear weapons to deter America's military presence, almost giving Saddam a free license to do whatever he wants in Middle East, rolling over Saundi Arabia with little or no opposition simply because Saddam has a few nuclear bombs to blast anybody daring to resist him. We couldn't afford that kind of scenario. It's a disaster waiting to happen.

      As you can see clearly, North Korea has at least two nuclear bombs, of course, it's unconfirmed. So if we do anything to North Korea, it's more likely Noth Korea will use them to kill off South Korea, thus, keeping the current ruler's regime alive and running. I think Kimmy boy (North Korean dictator) is using the nuclear weapons as a tool of blackmail rather than to attack USA or South Korea. He is trying to force America to give him assurances that America will not attack North Korea and oust the current dictator, thus, giving the dictator a long lease on his regime.

      So once again, it is important to kill these sons of bitches if we want the world to be a better place to live in. It is important for America to stop these madmen from using nuclear weapons to blackmail us forever.

      Dan
      Major James Holden, Georgia Badgers Militia of Rainbow Regiment, American Civil War

      "Aim small, miss small."

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Hello...

        Originally posted by Cheetah772
        So once again, it is important to kill these sons of bitches if we want the world to be a better place to live in. It is important for America to stop these madmen from using nuclear weapons to blackmail us forever.
        This is the biggest difference between the US and Europe when it comes to the lessons of World War Two. What the US learned from the war is that it's better to fight a little war early than wait and have to fight a bigger one later. What Europe learned is that modern warfare is incredibly deadly and should be avoided at all cost.
        "There is no great genius without some touch of madness."

        Seneca (5 BC - 65 AD)

        Comment


        • #5
          The way I prefer to rationalize a war on Iraq is that in '91 Saddam agreed to give up on his WMD program and their delivery platforms. For 12 years running, he has avoided that responsibility through deception, deceit and avoidance of UN inspections.

          After 12 years does he really deserve another chance to deceive the will of the United Nations?

          Now some in the UNSC ( mainly Germany & France) would like for more intrusive weapons inspections. The problem with that is that Saddam in November of last year promised to cooperate fully with the weapons inspections regime. That has not been the case. Proof of that lies in the fact that Iraq yesterday provided more documentation of its WMD program. If Saddam would have complied with RESO 1441, would not these documents have been provided to the weapons inspectors in December?

          How long does Saddam get to dangle the carrot in front of the horse before the horse figures out he'll never get a bite?

          Pierre
          Scientists have announced they've discovered a cure for apathy. However no one has shown the slightest bit of interest !!

          Comment


          • #6
            There are many "justifications" (many would say rationalizations)
            for the war. Saddam never complied with the cease fire terms from the first war, Saddam is in breach of the latest resolution (which he is. The resolution did not call for us to 'prove' he has weapons (which you _all_ know he has) It called for him to make a categorical revelation of his weapons programs in his document of Jan. _ (which he didn't) and fully cooperate with inspectors (which he hasn't). Saddam is in breach of other resolution too. A case could be made that the war is in order to end the sanctions which have been so brutal to the Iraqi people.

            In terms of the sanctions which are the instrument by which many people blame the U.S. for brutalizing Iraqis, those sanctions were an entirely justified act of international law (not U.S.) which Saddam could have ended anytime by complying. It is also Saddam not the U.S. who is diverting the humanitarian aid from it's intended lifesaving purposes. Clearly to end the sanctions Saddam must go. To end them without complete compliance from Saddam would make a mockery of international justice.

            The real reason that the U.S. must go to war against Iraq is because radical anti-U.S. Islamists may soon control the entire Middle East. All it would take is the Saudi government to topple. If most of the government of the middle east with the possible _exception_ of Iraq were replaced with democratic ones, they would probably be rabidly anti U.S. Which would be fine if they would only cut off our oil supplies, but the prospect of a forest of terrorist training camps springing up from Libya to Pakistan is to much to bear.

            I'm going to go off the deep end and draw an analogy between radical Islam in the middle east today and the Nazi party in 30s Germany. Both appeal to a group of people who (justifiably) feel they have been downtrodden. Both scapegoat the Jews. The rhetoric of both would peel your ears off, and yet is not taken seriously by the world at large. (why is it OK for the word "Jihad" to be so popular, but use the word "crusade" and watch out).
            I am afraid that if they say they are out enemies than maybe they _are_ our enemies.
            ...a man that can stand up for a principle and sit down on his own stool.
            -the Firesign Theatre

            Comment


            • #7
              Hi Raver,

              While WMDs are at the centerpiece of the US argument, it's not the only reason we are going to war. Aside from taking down a defiant Saddam Hussein, the US is also signaling to certain nations that we're serious about our commitment to Asia. As I've stated in other threads, the US has shifted it's priority from Europe to Asia.

              One of the rifts between Europe and the US centers on this shift in priority. Europe is perfectly capable of defending themselves. Aside from Russia, there is no real threat to their security. However, any detraction of combat power could be seen as a problem for the European governments. It doesn't matter how well you can defend yourself, the more guns, the better. I feel some of the European governments see the political shift as abandonment. The US might no longer be interested in participating in Peacekeeping operations or honoring agree-ments designed to ensure Euopean as well as US security (such as the Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty).

              I believe this is one reason why the US for sometime now have publically reaffirmed our commitment to NATO. This has been stated on several occassions in the past few years. I get the feeling some of our allies have doubts.

              If the US invades Iraq and deposes Saddam Hussein, many here feel America will have established a firm position in Asia and send a signal to all those who wish to test us that we're serious. Though it might appear that North Korea has upsetted this advantage, that government is weak and of little interest beyond symbolic. North Korea is isolated and poor. Though very dangerous, it's power doesn't really extend beyond the Korean Pennisula.

              The key targets are China and Iran. Both nations are investing in ways to expand it's vital interest. China is rebuilding it's military, and will soon have a very modernized naval force. Iran is a considerable terrorist threat to the region. Unlike Al-Qaeda, Iran could use terrorism to gain power. It's a tactic they've practiced in the past, and could try again. Political reform in that country doesn't necessarily mean Iranians will embrace the US. So, at the very least, we should be a little worried.

              Invading Iraq promotes the United States' wider strategic interest. Unfortunately, our interest are not always similar to our allies. Most of Europe wants to continue to focus on defense. A few weeks ago Sec. of Defense Rumsfield, said, "France and Germany represented the old Europe." Many people grew angry, and I felt it was the wrong comment to make. However, it does have a bit of truth to it. Many of our allies want Europe to remain the focus on US interest. The war in the Balkans slowed our change, but after 9/11, we can accelerate the shift.

              So, as always the true reason comes down to power. The US wants to turn toward Asia. Many European nations would like to see the continent remain top priority in most aspects of US foreign policy. Saddam has WMDs, and it's important for him to turn them over as he is supposed to. The US believes and I agree, allowing Saddam to remain defiant will likely encourage, not deter aggression. A person like Saddam doesn't wake up one day and say, "I'm turning a new lead and am content with the power I already have." He's just waiting for the right moment and will act.

              Yet, WMDs and Saddam are not the only issue in this crisis. The US is shaping it's foreign policy for the next decade at least.
              "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by Deltapooh
                .
                Unlike Al-Qaeda, Iran could use terrorism to gain power. It's a tactic they've practiced in the past, and could try again. Political reform in that country doesn't necessarily mean Iranians will embrace the US. So, at the very least, we should be a little worried.
                I'm not so sure about that Deltahpooh. Reports out of Iran state that the reformers welcome a US invasion of Iraq.

                Now I don't think they would like it so Uncle Sam could be close and cozy with Iran again. Rather they just want to get rid of Saddam. But the point here is that they don't seem to see an American military presence near their borders with the same fear as many other nations. I think that is something to be pretty positive about.

                Pierre
                Scientists have announced they've discovered a cure for apathy. However no one has shown the slightest bit of interest !!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Fortunately, I can set this complex matter straight quite simply and easily. The potential US invasion of Iraq is completely justified for the following reasons:

                  1) Iraq is an Islamic country (therein lies the irrefutable Al Queda connection!)

                  2) Iraq supposedly has weapons of mass destruction, which they extensively use to kill and threaten not American citizens but. . . well, their own people.

                  3) Iraq has repeatedly thumbed its nose at UN resolutions (which no one really seemed to care about for twelve years, but now it has suddenly been declared a problem worth killing a lot of people over).

                  4) Having learned nothing from the country that they originally fought for independence against, the US has decided to have a go at imperalism. They've embraced the motto: Creating short-term solutions that create really sticky and messy long-term problems.

                  5) Iraq has a lot of oil.

                  6) Since Bin Laden got so upset the first time the US occupied Saudi soil and attacked Iraq, the US figures that by doing it again it will "flush him out" so to speak. It might even create more terrorist attacks on US soil, and, therefore, justify the war on "terror."

                  7) Iraq has the audacity to employ a country name that has a "q" but no "u;" therefore, the two most powerful English speaking countries in the world have united and agreed to, well, destroy them.

                  8) George W. Bush is a Texan, and, therefore, he is susceptible to major lapses in judgement.

                  If any one has a problem with the above ideas, I'm an American and proud of it (and a laser-guided anti-personel device will soon be smashing through the roof of your home!).

                  (The above post is meant to be read with a healthy dose of irony. I suspect that many people on the forum will not agree with it, but I sure do feel better I have also just put myself in restraints and have refused to reply to any responses to my post )
                  ". . . those who win every battle are not really skillful--those who render other's armies helpless without fighting are the best of all." Sun Tzu, The Art of War

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Fading Captain
                    7) Iraq has the audacity to employ a country name that has a "q" but no "u;" therefore, the two most powerful English speaking countries in the world have united and agreed to, well, destroy them.
                    [/B]
                    No wonder Kraut and so many Germans are against the war!
                    Over there Iraq is spelled with a K!
                    ...a man that can stand up for a principle and sit down on his own stool.
                    -the Firesign Theatre

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I'm not so sure about that Deltahpooh. Reports out of Iran state that the reformers welcome a US invasion of Iraq.

                      Iran hates Saddam. He is an obstacle to any plans of expansion. The Iranian government has close ties with some of the factions working against Saddam. These same groups will likely be a part of a coalition government. I'm certain, they will, at least in part, move to further Iran's political agenda in Iraq.

                      Don't be mistaken, Iran hates us still. A generation or two doesn't wash away the memory of the Shah, and our blanant support of him. Iran stated on September 12, 2002, they would remain neutral in any conflict in Iraq. However, they also expressed their concern about what they called, "the growing US presence in the region."

                      Iran realizes that attacking the US directly will only result in immediate retaliation. The more likely COA would be to attack the local governments that support America.

                      I'm very concerned about the long term stability operation. Iran could try to make a move to gain power. If the Coalition resist, the Iranians will claim the West is trying to form a puppet regime to support Israel or whatever. The next thing you know, every jerk with a gun and copy of the Koran will come running to kill the "crusaders."

                      1) Iraq is an Islamic country (therein lies the irrefutable Al Queda connection!)

                      I believe Iraq has some ties to Al Qaeda. However, it is possible this link was benign. Saddam could have thought he was aiding Palestinian rebels. Bin Laden would probably keep Iraq as much in the dark as possible for security reasons.

                      A more credible argument does exists concerning Iraq's links to terrorism, but the US will not discuss it. Saddam offered to provide families of Palestinian bombers with some kind of fund to ensure their economic survival. Saddam openingly made this statement. However, because the US doesn't want to provide any link possible link between our policy and Israel, we don't really discuss the matter. In any case, it was a clear material breach.

                      2) Iraq supposedly has weapons of mass destruction, which they extensively use to kill and threaten not American citizens but. . . well, their own people.

                      Doesn't matter who Saddam gases. He is still in the wrong. The families of the dead won't make the distinction between who Saddam is killing.

                      3) Iraq has repeatedly thumbed its nose at UN resolutions (which no one really seemed to care about for twelve years, but now it has suddenly been declared a problem worth killing a lot of people over).

                      Just because we pursued a poor foriegn policy for twelve years, doesn't mitigate the threat. Furthermore, we don't have continue to enforce a policy that clearly doesn't work.

                      4) Having learned nothing from the country that they originally fought for independence against, the US has decided to have a go at imperalism. They've embraced the motto: Creating short-term solutions that create really sticky and messy long-term problems.

                      Oh well, some people have to learn the hard way.

                      5) Iraq has a lot of oil.

                      Sure does. I doubt few people will think about that at the gas pumps. The US will not be able to hog all the oil for themselves. So I expect everyone to benefit from this, though many claim otherwise because it's immoral.

                      6) Since Bin Laden got so upset the first time the US occupied Saudi soil and attacked Iraq, the US figures that by doing it again it will "flush him out" so to speak. It might even create more terrorist attacks on US soil, and, therefore, justify the war on "terror."

                      Bin Laden was not angry about the increased US presence in Saudi Arabia. He's pissed the US is supporting the King. He wanted to overthrow the government and assume power in Iraq. Bin Laden is a ruthless politician.

                      I doubt anyone believes invading Iraq will flush out Bin Laden. Some believe it will hurt Al-Qaeda, but I dismiss this argument. I don't think many Al-Qaeda terrorists reside in Iraq. No one can trust Saddam. He'll probalby kill the terrorists himself.

                      We can't allow fear to dictate our foriegn policy. If we do, the terrorists have accomplished their objectives. That's why don't believe the terrorist-Iraq link is a big negative.

                      7) Iraq has the audacity to employ a country name that has a "q" but no "u;" therefore, the two most powerful English speaking countries in the world have united and agreed to, well, destroy them.

                      Yep, the US and UK are training a corps of grammar teachers to teach the Iraqi's proper English. When we're done, the Iraqis will be convinced their are only twenty-four letters in the English language. D

                      8) George W. Bush is a Texan, and, therefore, he is susceptible to major lapses in judgement.

                      Not true. Texans are just more willing to blow everyone who doesn't wear cowboy hats and tight jeans off the planet.

                      If any one has a problem with the above ideas, I'm an American and proud of it (and a laser-guided anti-personel device will soon be smashing through the roof of your home!).

                      (The above post is meant to be read with a healthy dose of irony. I suspect that many people on the forum will not agree with it, but I sure do feel better I have also just put myself in restraints and have refused to reply to any responses to my post )


                      Yeah, that's what I expect an American to say. Wait a minute, I'm an American.....Crap, now I got to work twice as hard to think of something mean-spirited to say.

                      Just kidding. I respect all opinions, even those I disagree with.
                      "As soon as men decide that all means are permitted to fight an evil, then their good becomes indistinguishable from the evil that they set out to destroy."-Christopher Dawson - The Judgement of Nations, 1942

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        So what I'm hearing (correct me if I'm wrong) is that no-one seems to seriously believe that Iraq has WMDs?? And that the reasons for war are more around >potential< for WMDs, the fact that Iraq is a very unsavoury regime, and US strategic interests.

                        Personally I find the "US strategic interests" argument by far the most convincing. Nation-States have always acted in their own best interests since their inception, and in my view that is entirely natural and from some viewpoints desirable. While mankind can hope and aspire to a broader view of humanity, in reality I think its a long way off, and our current policy makers are no better and no worse than those throughout history.

                        Also, it appears that Korea is 'different' because they can fight back in a more effective way? Dont get me wrong here, I'm not being disparaging. Not going after N. Korea because they could kill thousands of people is a very sensible idea in my view.

                        Oh, and I had to comment on this from Deltapooh:

                        "We can't allow fear to dictate our foriegn policy. If we do, the terrorists have accomplished their objectives. That's why don't believe the terrorist-Iraq link is a big negative."

                        Not quite sure exactly what this means (although your comments in general seem very well thought) but it would seem to me that this is a flimsy basis for foreign policy. From what I see, a key question has not been genuinely asked since 11 Sept, and that is WHY?? If some one hates the US that much, there must be a reason - be it real or perceived, and I think understanding that reason is paramount.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Gentlemen, though being very scared, I felt I maybe also should share some of my thoughts on this point with you:

                          First let me make my stand clear: I am against such a war on Iraq. But probably what is more interesting are the reasons for such a stand.

                          Second and probably more importantly, no matter what we say or think, there is going to be a war anyway. So let us pretend it is a movie. :shrug

                          Let the "humaniturian" go to HELL, let "justice" go to HELL, let "freedom" go to HELL .... seriously, let all these damn things NOT be considered here, still I am against such a war. From two points of view: from the US view and from the rest of the world's view.

                          From the US: exactly as Raver asked, what is the "rationale" or simply why does the US want such a war? Benefits: 1. get rid of a hated enemy Saddam possibly with WMD. 2. Hopefully millions of barrels of oil 3. Much strengthened influence sphere in Asia. 4. misc gains ---- well, if that will make some1 satisfied for a war, at least I won't say he is "wise". Because this guy only looked at one side of the plan. (BTW, one may even find many benefits of blindly digging a hole right in the center of his living room floor. But surely he is stupid, why? Because he did not see the much worse opposite side.)
                          Let us what the US will create (and actually is creating) by such a war:1. Surely US will get rid of the regime of Saddam. Easy, the Iraqi soldiers are idiots. No one doubted that. But what next? A pro-US government in the region will appear to stablize the area in favor of the US, but even stronger anti-US sentiment will be incurred. Do we get more terrorists or less? And who is actually threatening our everyday life here in North America? Saddam or the terrorists and possible suicide bombers? For Bush, it may be Saddam more like a trouble because no suicide bombers would ever reach him anyway. But when you are walking on the 5th Ave., how the hell can Saddam threat you? While a suicide bomber could end a party with blood. So in the end, are WE safer or what?
                          2. Yep, oil. And the oil price will drop for 20c woo yaa! Big deal, huh? But where does this money really come from? One single laser guided bomb costs tax payer's hundreds of thousands dollars. And millions of this class of weapons or more sophisticated (thus more expensive) weapons will be used in the coming war. Who paid for all these? Tax payers. Where did the money go? Lockheed Martin! Boeing! So what happened to the rest, who are not in the defense industry? Well, go home with a pathetic layoff check. Well, fortunately, the oil price will drop 20c, so you'd still be able to (hopefully) pay the gas you will to drive all around the state to find the next job. Oh, I almost forgot, and where will all this oil money go? Of course, everyone a little big, but for our dear hero Bush, as everyone knows, who family controls a big oil firm, ... you know what? .... I like his job.
                          3. Oh yea, people in Asia will be more frightened by the US. pheewww... just like Kim Jong Il. Oops, what are you gonna do about that guy? Who was so scared that he jumped onto his nuke plans again? How about Iran? What will Iran see from the difference of Iraq and N. Korea? (I do not know indeed, but if I were Iran, I would think, see, Iraq, lamb! Why do you only have "intensions" to get nukes? Chicken! Look at Kim, he HAS nukes, nobody dares to bark him. OK, I MUST have nukes then. ) And anyway, there would not be a big problem for that because now the whole Islam probably will rely more on Iran, not? Saudi is a puppet and now Iraq is gone, who the hell will those muslim bet on then? Pakistan already has nukes, and they are islam... We know the US never trusted any islam. Shall not we unite, we will all be doomed ... com'on pak brothers..... (okok, so much for the asia influence...)
                          4. oh yea, and there are millions of this and that little gains. But think about what Image US used to have before all this mess? What this war can win for the US can really compensate for all what is/will be gone for the US image? Look at the whole sentiment of Europe (of course, we have to host our exceptional smart leader Tony Blair), do they look like the dearest Allies any more?

                          Why?
                          Because from the world's view: getting rid of Saddam is a good thing. But how? Using force? Using force to "change a regime" that, unfortunately right now, only because the US claims it is dangerous? Well, how would I know that after Saddam, who will be next? Saddam is surely a threat to world peace. But his ability to execute his will of abuse is very limited ---- possible WMD. How would such an ability compare to a country with the star-faring technology and countless WMDs? And If Saddam is a threat to us, the world, the rest of the world will surely (or probably) stand out and help us to defeat his threat (because he is defeatable, which is proved , right?) ---- esp. the US may stand up to help because it is best to its interest. Now, if the US ever threats us, who is gonna to help? If the US can go on a war to "change the regime" of Saddam at will and without international premission, what "regime" cannot be changed by the force of the US? What about me? Nobody will stand up for me then, because the US is undefeatable and no one would ever dare to face it ---- do not you see the Iraqi case? No one can stop the US. Oh yea, the US does not want to operate under "fear". Fine. But why should we live under "fear", under the fear of the US? (which is a much greater fear than Saddam.) And besides, only the neighbor of Saddam will ever need to fear Saddam's "illegally" constructed ballistic missiles of the pathetic range of 1500 kms. Oh, why can anyone trust the US not to use its countless missiles of unlimited ranges with countless warhead on a single missile? oh well, you say you won't use it. Fine. then why the hell do you need to build the NMD system to defend yourself, if you do not use your missiles, then who the hell dare to use it on you? Talking about threat? Who is the threat?
                          .....


                          Attn to ALL my opponents:

                          If you sent me your turn and after 24 hours, you still did not get anything from me, please be sure to post in the forum to ask for what is going on.

                          Remember, I ALWAYS reply within 24 hours, even if I do NOT have time to play my turn, in which case I will at least send you email to tell you that I will have to play it later, but I DO receive your turn.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Tiberius
                            There are many "justifications" (many would say rationalizations)
                            for the war. Saddam never complied with the cease fire terms from the first war, Saddam is in breach of the latest resolution (which he is. The resolution did not call for us to 'prove' he has weapons (which you _all_ know he has) It called for him to make a categorical revelation of his weapons programs in his document of Jan. _ (which he didn't) and fully cooperate with inspectors (which he hasn't). Saddam is in breach of other resolution too. A case could be made that the war is in order to end the sanctions which have been so brutal to the Iraqi people.

                            In terms of the sanctions which are the instrument by which many people blame the U.S. for brutalizing Iraqis, those sanctions were an entirely justified act of international law (not U.S.) which Saddam could have ended anytime by complying. It is also Saddam not the U.S. who is diverting the humanitarian aid from it's intended lifesaving purposes. Clearly to end the sanctions Saddam must go. To end them without complete compliance from Saddam would make a mockery of international justice.

                            The real reason that the U.S. must go to war against Iraq is because radical anti-U.S. Islamists may soon control the entire Middle East. All it would take is the Saudi government to topple. If most of the government of the middle east with the possible _exception_ of Iraq were replaced with democratic ones, they would probably be rabidly anti U.S. Which would be fine if they would only cut off our oil supplies, but the prospect of a forest of terrorist training camps springing up from Libya to Pakistan is to much to bear.

                            I'm going to go off the deep end and draw an analogy between radical Islam in the middle east today and the Nazi party in 30s Germany. Both appeal to a group of people who (justifiably) feel they have been downtrodden. Both scapegoat the Jews. The rhetoric of both would peel your ears off, and yet is not taken seriously by the world at large. (why is it OK for the word "Jihad" to be so popular, but use the word "crusade" and watch out).
                            I am afraid that if they say they are out enemies than maybe they _are_ our enemies.
                            Very interesting line that more democratic governmnts in the ME would in all probability be more anti American than their present Conservative rulers.

                            I think that radical Islam. like most radicals, see the world through a very narrow perspective. However the Nazis blamed the Jews without justification for what had happened to Germany. The Islamic Jihad types can at least point out very real acts of aggression and violence commited by the Israelis against the Palestinians. Yes I know of course that it is not a one sided affair!
                            http://www.irelandinhistory.blogspot.ie/

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by Raver
                              So what I'm hearing (correct me if I'm wrong) is that no-one seems to seriously believe that Iraq has WMDs?? And that the reasons for war are more around >potential< for WMDs, the fact that Iraq is a very unsavoury regime, and US strategic interests.
                              You got it right.

                              Granted, although WMDs can be a concern, it is interesting to notice that a lot of former military figures in the U.S. believe an all-out invasion is too much expensive, too much risky, in short, it's like using a hammer to kill some kind of fly or wasp.

                              The military know that they can be almost as efficient with other means to detect, track and surgically destroy any suspect WMD installation or weaponry. You can't hide these things foreover and they can be detected and destroyed from a distance, especially for a nation like the U.S. who have powerful technological tools to survey and monitor a country. You just need to be serious about it, something the Clinton administration has never been, and that's where the real problem started.

                              So if we are strictly speaking about the official excuse of going into Iraq for WMDs, there is no need to get 250 000 soldiers on the ground to do the work. Getting 250 000 soldiers on the ground reveal that you have other intentions, namely booting out the leader in place and taking control of the country. You do not deploy such a huge show of brute force to go after a couple of WMDs scattered in truck laboratories.

                              President Bush has already alluded to the "regime change policy", so there is much more to it than WMDs. What President Bush doesn't talk about is what to do after regime change... but rest assured that all the Pentagon have been working on that for weeks now. It is the heart of the whole initiative.

                              I don't want to come back to the discussion we had in the "Real Reason for War" thread, but I believe that beyond the official speeches and fuss on WMDs, the real reason for this war are geopolitical and strategic. The current set of alliances of the U.S. in the Arab world is on shaky ground, and America needs to be ready when the political landscape will shift. It needs to be present and exercise geopolitical power and influence to steer the region towards stability and order, and this will start through a new democratic Iraq aligned on the U.S. interests.

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