show me the money update
USA Today: Case for attacking Iraq still short on critical details
The president's remarks, coming in what normally is the most-watched political speech of the year, provided a welcome prologue to the extended public discussion that is required before he orders U.S. forces into battle. While Bush made a compelling case for why Saddam is a menace, he barely touched on questions that still need addressing in an equally high-profile way:
* What is the U.S. goal? Before U.S. troops march into Baghdad, the public needs to know what constitutes success coming out. Is the aim to disarm Saddam, replace him with a pro-U.S. dictator or nudge Iraq toward democracy? Bush didn't say, though each option entails different commitments, risks and costs. [Ed: This is an essential question.]
* Will the U.S. go it alone? Bush said his actions won't ''depend on the decisions of others,'' but he would try to enlist broad support. For now, most key allies other than Britain oppose a war absent more persuasive evidence that Saddam is defying U.N. demands to disarm. A global alliance not only improves the chances of military victory, it also eases the U.S. burden for managing post-war security and reconstruction.
* What are the risks? Bush warned of suffering, in spite of technological advances in military combat. But will Americans support a war that could be deadlier than the 1991 conflict with Iraq? Another fear is that it could engulf the Middle East or prompt new terrorist attacks.
* What are the costs? Bush was silent on that, although anxious Americans wonder how a war might affect their economic well-being. What would it cost the U.S. Treasury? Might Saddam blow up his oil fields, sending gas prices soaring and the world economy into a deep slump? [Ed: Not to mention, how does the US intend to pay for this war? Right now the answer seems to be, put it on a credit card.]