August 28, 2013
SAME WAR, DIFFERENT BA'ATHIST:
On Syria, a Drumbeat With Some Echoes of Iraq (MARK LANDLER, 8/29/13, NY Times)
A grim-faced secretary of state reading a bill of charges against a rogue Arab leader. The White House promising intelligence that will provide proof about weapons of mass destruction. Frenetic efforts to piece together a coalition of the willing. Breathless news reports about imminent bombing raids.The days since the deadly chemical weapons attack last week in Syria carry an eerie echo of the tense days leading up to the American-led invasion of Iraq in 2003. Some veterans of that period are expressing qualms that this time, too, the war drums are beating too loudly."There's some risk," said Thomas Fingar, a fellow at Stanford University's Institute for International Studies. "Political pressure is a factor. It appears to me that the situation has crossed a tipping point." In short, he said, the case for military action has moved so rapidly that it has become difficult for those counseling restraint.Mr. Fingar has firsthand experience of these situations. He was the head of the State Department's intelligence bureau, which dissented from the Bush administration's intelligence reports on Saddam Hussein's nuclear weapons program. Not properly scrutinized or challenged, that faulty intelligence paved the road to war a decade ago.
WMD was just a pretext in that war too. The road was paved by GHWB's failure to remove Saddam, who had zero chance of surviving W's presidency from the word go..Posted by Orrin Judd at August 28, 2013 5:52 PM