De-personalize the war
Posted by aogFriday, 21 February 2003 at 15:43 TrackBack Ping URL
There is some worrying news out of the Bush administration from (of course) Sec. of State Colin Powell:
People are hoping that war can be avoided. I hope it can be avoided. But the one who has the power in his hands to decide whether there will be a war or peace is Saddam Hussein. [...] if he complies, or if he leaves the country tomorrow, there will be no war
Excuse me? We're not at war with Saddam Hussein, but with the Ba'ath party (who are one sect of the Calipharians). If Saddam bugs out and is replaced by his son Uday or some other Ba'ath thug, what would be gained? It wouldn't be better for us or the Iraqis, but it would be good for the State Department. This bears on the previous post concerning President Bush's electoral chances in 2004. The plan described by Powell here is a very good recipe for repeating the former President Bush's 1992 election adventure, which isn't surprising because the same Powell gave the same advice back then. It may be disinformation but if so, I fail to see any benefits and the large cost of easily tieing our hands if some alternate thug manages to knock off Hussein. Will we have to go through this entire process again to get that thug to disarm? Will we betray those in the Middle East who could be our friends again? Has Powell learned nothing in the last 12 years?
Comments — Formatting by Textile
Joe Katzman Sunday, 23 February 2003 at 17:33

“Calipharians” makes ‘em seem like harmless dope-smokers, but it is a better term than “Islamists”. Liked “Califacists” even better, and think that for more than a few wings of that movement (incl. the Ba’ath wing) it fits on a political philosophy level too.

As for Powell, I believe he’s 100% certain that Saddam will neither comply nor leave, seeing both as a death sentence. I think the real problem is the precedent it sets: we may yet face Califascists and other dictators with the guile to play along in future; if so, we’ll be in real trouble.

End of Discussion