a reasoned exchange
CalPundit has an excellent comment on a phenomenon I've noticed among pro-war bloggers when they deign to notice the fact that Bush's prewar contentions are unraveling faster than a sweater in a basket full of kittens. They dismiss the importance of the President's fear-mongering about the alleged threat Iraq posed, claiming that that wasn't their reason for supporting the war.
Maybe not. But like it or not, it was the primary reason the President and his advisers took to an American public hardly enthusiastic -- and rightly so -- about this bastion of democracy launching a war of aggression. It wasn't, the President insisted; Iraq's so-called threat demanded a defensive response, and moreover the threat was so immediate that no delay could be tolerated.
(For example, here's Bush implying that Iraq might already have a nuclear weapon, when he knew darn well that absolutely no intelligence supported that conclusion, via CalPundit again.)
Richard Cohen has an op-ed in this morning's Washington Post pointing out that Bush steadfastly maintains -- in the face of all evidence -- his belief that Iraq had weapons, yadda yadda yadda. It's the Deanna Troi defense -- if he truly believed it, he isn't lying. Maybe so, but I've insisted all along that war is simply too grave of a matter to launch on a hunch. And the Founders wisely designed the Constitution so that theoretically our armed forces couldn't be deployed at the Executive's whim.
Bush's contempt for the small-d democratic process has been obvious throughout this sorry episode. I take heart, though, that by their insistence that the President's case wasn't their reasons, the hawks are tacitly conceding the weakness of the case many of them supported so vociferously in the months before the war.