June 06, 2003

MUCH ADO ABOUT WMDs: Having

MUCH ADO ABOUT WMDs: Having blogged endlessly about the subject before and during the war in Iraq, I suppose it would be wrong for me to ignore whatís going on there now.
No, they have not yet found weapons of mass destruction. And yes, that does matter- anyone who tells you otherwise is either a mindless Bush apologist, an idiot, or both. But repeat after me: if no WMDs are ever found, it proves that the Bush rationale for the war was wrong. It does NOT, however, prove that the war itself was wrong.
Thomas Friedmanís final Raines-era column, published Wednesday, articulated this point perfectly: If (and itís a big if) no weapons are ever found in Iraq, yes it will be a huge embarrassment to the Bush Administration and pretty much all American foreign policy endeavors for the foreseeable future. But it doesn't undo the other results of the war: mainly, that millions of Iraqis have been freed, the possibility of a vibrant democracy in the Middle East has strengthened, and a foreseeable solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has moved from "impossible" to merely "unlikely."
While the absence of weapons would seem at first glance to prove the war unjustified in retrospect, the presence of something else has more than justified it: mass graves. A lot of them. Of children. So in the end, it wasnít that we fought an unjust war; we just fought it for the wrong (official) reasons.
Of the 60-something Tom Friedman columns Iíve read in the last two weeks, Iíve gotta put this one in the top ten.

Posted by Stephen Silver at June 6, 2003 02:09 PM
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