Wednesday, September 25, 2002
The New Republic thinks Bush is being deceptive by throwing attention to the UN, when the real deal is to promote the doctrine of self-defence.
Above all, it means clearly confronting the most serious critique of the administration's preemption doctrine: that Saddam can be deterred. The Bush administration has not adequately explained that Saddam is prone to recklessly underestimating America's resolve--which is part of the reason he wasn't deterred from invading Kuwait. And it hasn't adequately explained that while deterrence "worked" vis-à-vis the Soviet Union, there's no guarantee it would have continued to work had the USSR endured for another 50 years. (Even during the cold war, after all, there were some very close calls.) The United States relied on deterrence against the Soviet Union not because deterrence was foolproof but because we had no other choice: We could never have preemptively attacked the USSR; the costs would simply have been too great. But the United States can preemptively attack Iraq. Deterrence is no longer our only option, and it isn't our safest one.
And for the next twit that uses the Cuban Missile Crisis as an example of diplomacy:
1. The blockade worked because it was backed by the threat of big-time force.
2. Kennedy had to give up his missiles in Turkey.