Thursday, August 22, 2002

Brink Lindsey puts forward a good case for war on Iraq.
there's no invisible hand in foreign affairs. There are no equilibrating mechanisms or feedback loops in the Hobbesian chaos of state-to-state relations that give us any assurance that, if the United States were only to stand aside, things would go as well for us in the world as they possibly could.
Accordingly, it seems to me that a no-exceptions policy of U.S. noninterventionism rests ultimately on an untenable assumption -- on the implicit belief that unrousable passivity on the part of the greatest and most powerful country that ever existed will somehow yield the most favorable achievable conditions in the world. That, in an intricately interconnected world, leaving everything outside our physical borders to the wolves will ensure that everything turns out for the best.

Lindsey is making a better fist of my theory, that international relations is based on the rule of the schoolyard, not the courtroom.
We are currently in a good position to prevail against Saddam militarily. We thrashed him a decade ago; we're stronger now, and he’s weaker. He has no superpower patrons. We don't think he has nukes -- yet.
Of all the WMD regimes we could go against, Iraq is the most logical target. We fought a U.N.-sanctioned war against Iraq, the cease-fire of which was conditioned on the verifiable dismantling of Iraq's WMD programs. That condition has been breached. We should unbreach it.

And most tellingly, his final words.
I don't think a policy of knee-jerk, indiscriminate interventionism is wise or productive for the United States. But I do believe that, in the present circumstances, Edmund Burke's prudent counsel applies: "The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." Now is not the time to do nothing.


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