Originally posted by: VorLonUK
I agree Scut,
Sadam was no doubt a very dangerous man and I'm sure if he had the chance to use any WMD he would. As to where any materials might have gone is another matter. From what I've read he was also a master of misinformation, which I suppose is a natural response when someone (inspectors) are checking over your country. I'm not defending it, but simply saying any patriot would do the same in any country. So what there was in reality to what was made up propaganda wise is anyone's guess.
As you probably have gathered, I just don't like the way we went to "war" and for the wrong reasons given. Personally I would have preffered a bit less speed and a bit more haste and allowed Hans Blix to do his job. I would have then got all countries (major) onside so that no particular one or two countries payed the heavy price, monetary and in human lives.
And I completely understand that point of view, but the problem was we'd given them 11 years to hide anything they wanted to hide and it was obvious the inspectors were never going to find anything (regardless of whether it was there or not). In 11 years you can get pretty damn good at anything and that includes baffling weapons inspectors.
Moreover, I didn't believe then and I don't believe now that we would ever have gotten our "allies" on the security council to join us. The revelations of the Oil for Food scandal now show why. I have never believe that France likes the US much or cares about what happens to us because they're still smarting over the fact that the US and England had to save their tails in WW2.
The "De Gaulle chauvanism" runs too strong through their politics. France is insanely jealous they aren't one of the top dogs in the world anymore and they will do just about anything to assert a leadership role. They couldn't win on the world stage with this issue so they made sure the game wasn't played at all with their security council veto. Moreover, they used their influence on the European stage to bully smaller countries out of siding with the US by threatening their EU membership. Between the Oil for Food mess, their "I leaving and taking my football with me" attitude in the UN, and their bullying of smaller EU countries, France should have come out of this whole situation looking like the jerks they've been but they've been masterful in making sure nobody pays attention. It certainly doesn't help that the American and British press are playing right into it by making sure anything anti-France doesn't gets covered with any real analysis because it makes Bush and Blair look good or at worst, not look as bad.
The fact of the matter is, if that vote in the UN had actually happened, the US had enough votes to win it. At that point the war is completely legal from a UN standpoint and the US is in the clear on all of these accusations of "unilateralism." Even worse for France, we waltz into Iraq and find all this dirty paper on them and they are seriously embarassed on the world stage. How different does the world look if this happens? How different does the situation on the ground look in Iraq when the press of the world is on the Iraqi's side and not the insurgent's side? These terrorist groups aren't stupid. They know the way to win is in the press and the Iraqi people are the real losers here. Even if it all falls apart for Bush, so what? He gets booted out of office, we pull out of Iraq, and we Americans go back to our comfy little homes with 3 TVs, 2 cars, a couple VCRS and DVD players. We eat ourselves fat as usual and all the while the Iraqis come under the thumb of another brutal dictator, but not after a bloody civil war. Does the press realize this is the fate they're consigning Iraqi's too when they only report the insurgency and none of the progress? Or do they even care?