Monday, May 02, 2005

The justification for the war

Ted Barlow makes a good point over at Crooked Timber on why even if Bush and his minions occasionally mentioned democratization as a likely positive benefit of the war, it cannot logically have been the primary motive for the war:

Over and over again, Bush insisted that we were giving Saddam the chance to avoid war. He assured his audiences that Saddam could prevent an invasion by disarming. Not by democratizing, not by ceasing his brutal tactics, and (until hours before the invasion) not by leaving power. In fact, Bush makes this promise in just about every speech linked in Reynolds' link-rich refutation.

If the U.S. was willing to cancel the overthrow of Saddam's brutal, undemocratic goverment in the event that he could show proof of disarmament, then neither democracy promotion nor human rights could have been the reason for the invasion. I can't see any way to square this circle.

And if it wasn't the primary motive, then crowing about the result afterwards is, at best, unseemly.

No comments: