Monday, February 10, 2003

On a non-lawyer note, Iraq has finally agreed to U-2 flyovers. Ol' Saddam plays a dangerous end game. He's clearly doing just enough to keep casting doubt on the legitimacy of the U.S. going to war against him. The Administration is not biting, however, and continues to beat the drums of disarmament or war.

I swear I don't know where I stand on the war question. Jounalist Joe Klein, in "The Natural," posits that Americans don't much like to go to war unless first attacked. That notion rings true to me. Given the tenuous links between 9/11 and Iraq, we can't exactly say that 9/11 is the reason we're going after him. So, the case for action against Saddam, as made by Secretary of State Powell, is that there is clear evidence that he is covering up his development of weapons of mass destruction. Is this fairly abstract case enough to justify initiating military action against him? I am not in favor of appeasement, such as in the context of the world's acquiescence of Hitler's power grabs in the late 1930s. Does my reluctance to approve of war in Iraq make me an appeaser? And the irony of my reverie is that I remember saying on 9/11/01 with some satisfaction, while the buildings were coming down, that this gave us the green light to go after Saddam.

I fear that W. is pushing so hard on this out of some sense that his dad started it and he's going to finish it. I fear that if we corner this wounded animal [Saddam], he will have no reason NOT to use any weapons of mass destruction he does have, just to survive. Could this exercise in war-making be opening up a pandora's box? Our president -- like it or not -- has threatened to go nuclear if Saddam uses WMD. If that happens, and we use nuclear devices for the first and only time since Nagasaki, could India and Pakistan see that as a green light to go nuclear in their ongoing disputes? Or North and South Korea for that matter. It's scary, and I have no confidence whatsoever that this Administration is actually considering the tangential implications of such potentially devasating actions.

I hope I'm just a worry wart. We'll see....

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