Thursday, January 30, 2003

Assumption Check: I've heard a lot of this argument (i.e., if Iraq, then therefore North Korea) and I have to disagree. I think it's a hypertechnical argument that ignores some critical strategic elements. First, there is a solid chance that North Korea has nukes now, which means that to call thier bluff is to nuke them. Even if they had no nuclear weapons, I don't foresee a conventional hot war, given that we have about 50,000 troops on the border, while they have nearly a million. And out host, South Korea, at whose "invitation" we serve, finds that the SOFA that keeps 50,000 troops there is already chafing a bit. Imagine if we told them we wanted to bring in another quarter of a million soldiers. If North Korea doesn't negotiate, it's a lost cause, and we end up with full-blown cold war syndrome. Second, Saddam promised 12 years ago, after we kicked his ass up and down the gulf coast, to fully disarm, which he hasn't done. On the other hand, North Korea fought us to a draw 50 years ago and made no promise, outside the DMZ, to disarm. True, they did sign the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, which they officially backed out of this month, but didn't we just back out of an ABM treaty with Bad Vlad Putin? We'd look pretty hypocritical going to war over that. Despite the obfuscation of the media, the French, and the Dems, Iraq is an open-and-shut case, otherwise we wouldn't have UN resolutions that the frogs are trying to weasel out of; nor would we have congressional resolutions that Tom Daschle wants to weasel out of. If the case was made last October, when the congress authorized Bush to use force, the case is made now. Hell, the case was made in 1998 when Clinton signed the Iraq Liberation Act, which states unequivocally that none of us really believes that disarmament will ever occur under Saddam's regime.

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