Monday, November 07, 2005

I Am So Sick Of This Excuse

As the heat has turned up on the Plame investigation and the increasingly-obvious dodginess of the pre-war intelligence used to justify the invasion of Iraq, I am seeing a revival of the "Everyone thought Saddam had WMDs; even Clinton thought so!" canard.

I just want to point out two things that these arguments oh-so-conveniently overlook:

1) Assuming Jonah Goldberg's cutesy little gotcha piece is representative, Clinton's belief in Saddam's WMDs is past-tense, as his sanctions and inspections were instrumental in eliminating them. It's a bit like Truman using FDR's warnings about Hitler as a rationale to invade Germany in 1947 ("Even FDR thought Germany was a threat!").

2) The "everyone" who thought Saddam had WMDs was not privy to all the CIA warnings and caveats about Saddam's alleged WMDs, including those about the unreliability of sources like Chalabi, "Curveball", and al-Libi, who the administration nevertheless relied heavily upon in building their case for war. This, to me, is far more damning than the timeshift dodge, because it speaks directly to the Bush administration's fundamental duplicity. It knowingly promoted flawed intel while suppressing knowledge of said flaws, then used the wool-pulling result of its own deceptions as the cover of consensus.

If this doesn't come crashing down around Bush and the Republicans, this country is in deep, deep trouble. I estimate our chances are 50-50 at best (see previous post on the parlous paucity of the pauper press).

1 comment:

Neil Shakespeare said...

Even Lincoln thought Hitler had Wet Mushy Drawers.