Sunday, February 27, 2005

Invading Iraq - revisionist history

One of my regular reads is Powerline. It's a fine blog, and I learn a lot by reading it. But one of the things I "learned" today made me sit up and take notice.

I always thought that the primary reason we invaded Iraq was to remove Iraqi WMD and to prevent them from using them on us or giving to terrorists to use on us. But according to Powerline's entry Feeling the Heat, "The principal reason for deposing Saddam Hussein, as articulated repeatedly by President Bush and others in his administration, was to begin the process of reforming the Arab world". That's a crock of crap and an attempt to make people forget the WMD fiasco.

Here is the email I sent them;

Contrary to your recent blog posting, the “principal reason for deposing Saddam Hussein, as articulated repeatedly by President Bush and others in his administration, was” NOT "to begin the process of reforming the Arab world”. Trying to head off Iraq using WMD on us or giving them to terrorists to use on us was the primary reason. To state otherwise is ludicrous. Only when no WMD were found did the reasons for the war “shift”.

Examples in his speeches leading up to the war are too numerous to mention. But let me cite two examples;

His 2003 State of the Union address contained numerous references to Iraqi WMD and that, if the U.N. did not act, we would act to remove the threat. Not one word about how liberating Iraq would lead to a renaissance of freedom in the Middle East. I quote;

“Imagine those 19 hijackers with other weapons and other plans, this time armed by Saddam Hussein. It would take one vial, one canister, one crate slipped into this country to bring a day of horror like none we have ever known.”

“If this threat is permitted to fully and suddenly emerge, all actions, all words and all recriminations would come too late. Trusting in the sanity and restraint of Saddam Hussein is not a strategy, and it is not an option.”

And I quote from his speech on the day we invaded;

“…American and coalition forces are in the early stages of military operations to disarm Iraq, to free its people and to defend the world from grave danger.” The first and third reasons are WMD related.

"We have no ambition in Iraq except to remove a threat and restore control of that country to its own people.” The first reason is WMD related.

"Our nation enters this conflict reluctantly, yet our purpose is sure. The people of the United States and our friends and allies will not live at the mercy of an outlaw regime that threatens the peace with weapons of mass murder.” ONLY reason stated is WMD related.

"We will meet that threat now with our army, air force, navy, coastguard and marines so that we do not have to meet it later with armies of firefighters and police and doctors on the streets of our cities.” WMD, once again.

"My fellow citizens, the dangers to our country and the world will be overcome. We will pass through this time of peril and carry on the work of peace. We will defend our freedom. We will bring freedom to others and we will prevail.” First and second reasons are WMD related.

Bush’s primary stated aim (and all the other big players in his administration primary stated aim) was to remove the threat of Iraqi WMD. To state otherwise is to practice revisionist history – Ward Churchill would be proud.

I spent 8 years in Saudi Arabia. I’m happy things are going well (relatively speaking) in the Middle East and that freedom appears to be gaining footholds in many places in that part of the world. I’ve said so on my own blog. And there is no doubt that this is due to the invasion. But it wasn’t the primary reason for it. You hurt your credibility by stating otherwise.
The tendency for Bush-supporters (like Powerline) to rewrite history must be opposed. Drop them a line if you feel likewise.

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