Monday, March 17, 2003

So Daschle thinks we failed

How can this be?

Maybe Daschle is confusing process with results, mistakenly thinking our goal at the UN was simply to get the 15 countries of the UN Security Council together, and that doing so would be a victory for 'diplomacy' - regardless if the cost of obtaining such support was leaving Hussein in power.

On the other hand, perhaps Daschle agrees with getting rid of Hussein. It's hard to tell; as first he votes to give Bush the authority to do just that, then turns around and criticizes Bush for acting on the very authority Congress gave him. So, maybe Daschle is thinking that, if only Bush had introduced a resolution calling on Hussein to disarm or face serious consequences, and gotten all 15 countries to support this resolution, then Hussein would have disarmed. Well, there was such a resolution, and Hussein failed to comply with its terms. Didn't Hussein fail to back down in 1991, when there was significant international support for the Bush I - led coalition? Yet, Tom thinks this time was going to be different?

Or is that Daschle feels Bush should have been able to put pressure on the other members of the Security Council in order to get unanimous explicit support for military action. But, this presumes that the other 14 countries have the same values, perspective and resolve as we (and our allies) do. Maybe, but when's the last time you ever heard of the US and Cameroon, or Guinea for that matter, being mentioned in the same breath? These other countries, France included, are NOT the US - they do see things differently than we do. And, given this, what in the world does Daschle think Bush should have done in order to get these countries on board? Threatened them? Bought them off?

And, why does Daschle think we are the ones who failed? To paraphrase the old joke, you look up the word failure in the dictionary and the definition simply reads, 'see France'. Bush decided he was going to disarm Hussein, with or without the support of the UN - he's going to do just that - so he's the failure. The French goal, on the other hand, was to keep the US from attacking - an attack that is going to take place in a bit over 45 hours from posting. So, if any country gets called a failure, why shouldn't it be the French? After all, they certainly have the track record - militarily, economically, and now, diplomatically.

The more I hear from Daschle the more I'm reminded that he is just someone who has lost the battle and doesn't like it. He presided over the loss of the Senate, has watched his Presidential aspirations go up in smoke, is facing a potentially strong challenge in 2004, and, with 7+ Democratic candidates for President, is just desperate to keep his name in the papers. A relative once commented that Daschle was so much smarter than his Republican counterpart at the time (think initials TL). I now realize that he never said Daschle was smart in an absolute sense. Gee Tom, do you think the roughly 70% of Americans who back military action think we've failed?