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Friday, December 02, 2005
Almost daily, I read something about someone, whether they be a famous performer, an athlete, a politician, a pundit, or even a layman, who refutes the premise (sometimes eloquently, sometimes not) that the US and its allies were justified in going to war with the Hussein regime in Iraq. The anti-war echo chamber loves to toss about various conspiracy theories about Bush, Cheney, Rove, et. al., almost as if it is a sport for them. Of course, free thinking people are entitled to those opinions, just as I am entitled to mine... and here's mine.
Stop the revisionism.
When uninformed people talk about the President's motives for making the case for war, misstatement of facts is to be expected. When more responsible individuals, such as Congressional leaders, stake positions inconsistent with the generally accepted intelligence and information that was available at the time, that is irresponsible political opportunism. When Senate Democrats maintain that they would have never endorsed a resolution for war had they known the "facts", they are conveniently forgetting that the global intelligence community had long maintained that Iraq was developing WMDs, and intended to use them. Every reputable intelligence agency held this position. Every. Single. One. Even the benevolent UN itself believed it to be so, but lacked the backbone to enforce its own resolutions.
The American public, by and large, is sophisticated enough not to embrace such indiscriminant editing of historical facts. Saddam Hussein's wanton destruction of the Kurds with chemical weapons is well-documented. Those images can never be rescinded, no matter how loud the cacophony of revisionism gets. Given what the intelligence community knew, or thought it knew, and given Hussein's precedent of destroying his countrymen, and given the existing
resolutions by the international community regarding Iraq, the action of war against an aggressive regime was not only justified, but necessary. That is the opinion of a plurality of Americans.
However, there is a faction of dissenters who disagree. That is their right. I applaud them for doing so. Disagreement and debate are essential parts of any successful representative government. That being said, if those who disagree with the war effort are to be taken seriously, they need to at least get their facts right. They must, at a minimum, conform their argument to the facts, and not the reverse.
The statements being made lately are not being made out of dissent, but out of a desire to smear and tarnish a presidency, and to gain political advantage in the runup to the 2006 Congressional elections. I believe though that most Americans will see past the rhetoric, and continue to see what the facts show - that the President never misled the public, that every responsible party in the free world believed what the President believed, and based those beliefs on the intelligence available to them, and that the revisionism happening today is nothing more than that -
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