Monday, January 15, 2007


No, it's not quite John Lennon, but GWB wants us to imagine what might have been. He would then like us to consider his actions in Iraq in the context of this imaginary situation and then... couldn't we just, maybe find them to be appropriate? Imagine...

Josh Marshall comments of GWB on 60 Minutes:

I'm not sure how many people saw it. But the big catch in Scott Pelley's interview with President Bush last night, in my mind at least, was the new rationale for the invasion of Iraq: to defend against future hypothetical scenarios.

Asked whether the invasion has made the Middle East more unstable, the president responds: "Our administration took care of a source of instability in Iraq. Envision a world in which Saddam Hussein was rushing for a nuclear weapon to compete against Iran."

Well, yes, imagine that.

When I first read this line, I thought the president was saying that Iraq was competing with Iran for a nuclear weapon (in which case, obviously, competing pretty poorly). But reading more closely, I realized that what he was saying that was that if Saddam were still in power now -- with the Iranian nuclear issue heating up -- that now Saddam could be making things even more complicated by himself getting back into the nuclear game.


TPM Reader BS piles on...
What worries me is setting out a doctrine that pre-emptive strikes are not only justified by an actual gathering threat but by hypothetical futuristic scenarios which have no bearing in the present reality. You can’t invade a country without a nuclear program to stop them from maybe one day changing their mind about it any more than you can shoot an unarmed man because he might one day buy a gun. Didn’t Bush ever read that Bible he likes to invoke so much? Remember Exodus, where mean old Pharoah starts killing all Hebrew newborn males to decimate the population? To quote:

“Look, the Israelite people are much too numerous for us. Let us deal shrewdly with them, so that they may not increase; otherwise in the event of war, they may join our enemies in fighting against us and rise from the ground.” (Exodus 1:8)

By Bush’s new logic, Pharoah would have been completely justified in his genocide - yeah the Hebrews weren’t rising up but “imagine a world” in which they did. In fact, by this logic a nation can justify invading ANY country at ANY time and even commit widespread atrocities against civilians. Saddam could have invaded Kuwait because they might one day get nuclear weapons. Russia could have invaded Afghanistan because they might one day get nuclear weapons. Hell, Hitler could have invaded Poland because pigs might fly and Polish scientists invent some kind of super duper laser beam that makes them an armed superpower. Or he could have just killed all the Jews using the same rationale for pre-emptive action that Pharoah (and our President) endorsed.


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