Paul From Minneapolis

Friday, November 18, 2005

A State of War

In essence, over-simplistically, that phrase is what I perceive most Democratic senators as having enthusiastically accepted, with regard to our new attitude toward Hussein in the period after 9-11. This was in 2001 and 2002, especially, before the Iraq debate really heated up.

They were saying, to my ears, that in this new era, considering the nature of the threat and considering Hussein, the era of "permanent dithering" was no longer acceptable; and neither was the long-term presence of the Hussein & Sons regime.

Rockefeller's comment about the concept of imminence being "outdated" got me, since it seems part of that acceptance. Whether there's a way to say that's not what he meant, for the moment I don't care; I'm trying to develop an idea this has kicked me into developing.

My readership awaits; she seems like a fine person so I don't want to delay forever.

Here's a letter I just sent the Strib that deals with the topic:

It’s been clear for months and years that the administration can fairly be accused of excessive certainty on the WMD issue. And what’s beginning to occur now, the debate on “did they provide all the intelligence,” is an extension of that, and necessary. And that discussion will happen; oh boy will it happen.

Here’s what won’t happen: an honest discussion by the left of the effect introducing uncertainty would have and should have had on the war decision. Keeping in mind that nearly every Democratic senator had unflinchingly agreed with the notion, after 9-11, that the long-term survival of the Hussein & Sons regime was not acceptable. That is, they’d accepted that after 9-11, permanent dithering was no longer an option.

And keeping in mind as well that word “uncertainty:” that we never would have known he had no weapons. We would have had a suspicion, only that, that we were dealing with a disguised, murky, well-nigh-invisible and certainly tactical destruction of weapons stocks by Hussein; in the context of a permanently-withering and corrupt (we now know) inspections and sanctions regime.

In short, we won’t have a left capable of separating their anger at W from an honest discussion of our national interests, and the interests of the Iraqis, then and now.

(You perhaps note, dear reader, my re-use of phrases from posts at comment boards; and the phrase "permanent dithering" appears twice here. I acknowledge that flaw.)

So what this intoduces, I guess, is "the other storyline" in viewing the Iraq war debate: the idea that another source of disingenuity and dishonesty was on the left, and involved a refusal to live up to the implications of their own brave stated beliefs after 9-11.