Mar 18, 2003

Oops, missed a day, somehow didn’t get to it at work, and then came home, ate dinner, put the kids to bed and passed out. Justin waking up at 6 am all weekend put me at a sleep disadvantage, and I wanted to get somewhat caught up tonight since I’m going to the opera (never a good idea on low sleep). This meant I missed part 2 of Children of Dune, but I figure I can catch one of the next hundred times its on. The first part was pretty good, actually.

So we’re going to go to war with Saddam. Personally, I couldn’t be more thrilled. The fact that there’s a good chance it’ll be an ass-whupping doesn’t hurt, but even if it looked to be a long, difficult slog, I still think in the long run its worth it to get the nutcase out of there. I don’t normally feel particularly hawkish, but I have to think that the basic idea makes sense, and there would seem to be a number of historical examples (Hitler being the most obvious) where in hindsight somebody should have done the same thing. Saddam is no Hitler, and Iraq is no Germany, but in the new version of the real-life game of Risk, you don’t need huge armies and tons of fanatical followers to stir things up. And without Russia to pose as a deterrent, there’s not much stopping the US from doing whatever it wants, which I’m sure bothers a lot of other countries, but may not necessarily be a bad thing. It probably smacks of the manifest destiny stance the US always used to have before WWII. I don’t blame the european countries or Turkey for wanting to avoid all this, as its a lot closer to home for them than it is for us, and Saddam is nuts enough to fire off a few missiles in any random direction just because he can. But if we can truly go in there and get rid of the guy, and if somebody better can actually then take over, and if enough pressure is brought to bear either by the US or the UN to keep it that way, then I think in the long run we come out ahead. We’ll never know what it was like in the parallel universe where Saddam is left alone to cook up his schemes and provide assistance to other terrorists, but personally I don’t think we need another 9/11 to galvanize us into action. We know the guy is bad news, he could be responsible at any moment for some major terrorist attack, let’s just get rid of him now and be done with it before anything worse happens. MacArthur supposedly said, “It’s better to be boldly decisive and risk being wrong than to agonize at length and be right too late.” The agonizing has been going on for twelve years already, I think the risk of being wrong is fairly remote at this point.

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