I'm skipping a bit, but this next part is choice:
Just on the material aspect - I love it when people darkly describe the coming intervention as "blood for oil", or equivalent gibberish. Does this mean what it appears to mean, namely that oil is not worth fighting over?
Maybe it means that people are willing to sacrifice their lives for their national interest but not an economic one. Or if this is to be a war for oil, our democratic leaders owe it to their people to be honest about it. No one questioned the fact that oil was a part of the rationale for Gulf War I but most people signed onto the concept when it was discussed openly.
Or that it's no cause for alarm that the oil resources of the region are permanently menaced by a crazy sadist who has already invaded two of his neighbours?
Saddam depends on oil revenue. Exactly where is the evidence that Saddam has either the ability or the inclination to "menace" oil resources? If he wanted, he could stop exports today. If he wanted, he could launch SCUDs or what's left of his army against either Kuwait or Saudi Arabia. He doesn't do so, even if he wanted. Why? all together class: because he's deterred from doing so! (Notice, too, the characterization of Saddam here as a "crazy sadist"--intended, no doubt, to keep you from raising exactly that question. He can't be deterred, you see, because he's crazy.
There is another base rumour in circulation, to the effect that Bush is doing all this for electoral reasons.
Base indeed, and one that until recently no one took seriously. However, regardless of motivation, there's absolutely no doubt that Republicans from Bush on down have used the Iraqi situation to score political points. This fact alone means the Administration's case on Iraq merits the closest scrutiny. And Chris, I still don't see you dishing up any of that evidence we were talking about. If you have it, I'll believe it. I promise.