Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Ace is right to get mad at the GOP for not ridiculing the Democrats for their silly stunt of forcing the Senate into closed session to discuss the intelligence leading up to the invasion of Iraq.

But, as I've pointed out before (and no doubt will continue to do so), the GOP is responsible for giving the Democrats the opportunity to make hay over the faulty pre-war intelligence. By claiming that it was proven that Iraq had WMDs as a rationale for invading, the GOP left itself open to attack and ridiculue once that proof disappeared into the desert air.

All of this could have been avoided if Bush and the GOP had simply (yes, simply) said that we were invading because we didn't know for sure if Hussein had WMDs. We were invading because we needed to be sure that he didn't have WMDs and, in light of the conflicting intelligence on the matter, the ONLY way to find out for sure was to go in and check things out for ourselves. The American people would have understood and appreciated that, in the aftermath of 9/11, America could no longer wait until we were absolutely positively sure about a threat before we acted to address that potential threat.

Had Bush done this, it wouldn't have been important for Cheney and company to jump all over those who were pushing a dissenting viewpoint as to whether Iraq had WMDs... it wouldn't have been necessary for Powell to go before the UN and state as fact what later turned out to not be so much fact... it wouldn't have been necessary to discount Wilson's op-ed.

And it wouldn't have been necessary to come up with other rationales for invading Iraq. We wouldn't have had to claim we were invading to save the Iraqis from Hussein. We wouldn't have had to claim we were invading Iraq in order to bring democracy to the Middle East.

We wouldn't have had to have our troops stick around. We wouldn't have had over 1,500 of our troops killed, and thousands more wounded, in Iraq because WE WOULDN'T HAVE STILL BEEN THERE. We would have gone in, made sure that Hussein didn't have WMDs, or the programs to develop WMDs, then WE WOULD HAVE LEFT.

But, nnnnooooooo, Bush couldn't simply (yes, simply) have said that to the American people. And because he couldn't, American soldiers have died who didn't need to die. Because he couldn't, his credibility is now worthless. Because he couldn't, we don't have the resources to pressure Iran into giving up its nuclear program. Because he couldn't, he wouldn't have had to promise hundreds of billions of dollars in Gulf Coast rebuilding funds. Because he couldn't, he wouldn't have had to sign the biggest transportation spending bill in the history of this country.

Because he couldn't, I, as well as countless others, am counting the days until January 2009.