"How did it come to pass that an opposition's measure of a president's foreign policy was all or nothing, success or "failure"? The answer is that the political absolutism now normal in Washington arrived at the moment--Nov. 7, 2000--that our politics subordinated even a war against terror to seizing the office of the presidency." - Daniel Henninger - WSJ 11/18/05
"the slovenliness of our language makes it easier for us to have foolish thoughts." - George Orwell

Friday, March 24, 2006


Mark Steyn discusses with his usual flair, the cost of containment. This is an argument that I have made, although probably not in a blog world. Not so much a monetary price tag as Steyn makes mention of, but the cost of the endless lack of stability that passes for stability.

Steyn never argued the WMD angle, although that was certainly a piece in my arguments in the run-up. Ultimately I did not care about the WMDs as much as I cared about the ludicrous sanctions, no-fly zones, international/U.N. balking at the difficulties, France/Russia pushing since roughly 1995 to end sanctions etc.. We did what we did in '91, then spent the next 12 or so years standing guard, while other nations continued business and Saddam manipulated the "Oil for Food" scam, which began December 10, 1996 to feed the starving of Iraq. At some point this continually eroding coalition would have completely unraveled, eventually allowing Saddam the equivalent of a "clean bill of health." This was not an option.

"YES, IT'S come at a price. In the last three years, 2,316 brave Americans have given their lives in Iraq, which is as high as US fatalities in Vietnam - in one month, May 1968. And, if the survival of Saddam embodied the west's lack of will, the European-Democratic Party-media hysteria over the last three years keeps that question open. But that doesn't change the facts on the ground. Instead of relying on the usual ineffectual proxies, Bush made the most direct western intervention in the region since General Allenby took Jerusalem in the Great War. Now on to the next stage."


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