diet coke for breakfast

Thursday, April 08, 2004

Posted by Tanstaafl
Bob Kerry Responds to Richard Clarke:

Mr. Clarke's views on Iraq notwithstanding, after 9/11 we could not afford either to run the risk that Saddam Hussein would be deterred by our military efforts to contain him or that these military deployments would become attractive targets for further acts of terrorism. I supported President Bush's efforts to persuade the United Nations Security Council to change a 10-year-old resolution that authorized force to contain Saddam Hussein to one that authorized force to replace his dictatorship. And I believe the president did the right thing to press ahead even without the Security Council's support. Remember, the June 25, 1996, attack on Khobar Towers that left 19 American airmen dead happened because of our containment efforts. Sailors had also died enforcing the Security Council's embargo and our pilots were risking their lives every day flying missions over northern and southern Iraq to protect Iraqi Kurds and Shiites.

It is my view that a political victory for terrorism in Iraq is a much greater danger to us than whether or not we succeed in capturing Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan. Victory in Iraq will embolden radical Islamists as much as our failure to recognize the original danger of their declaration of war against us.

What SHOULD be the lessons of Vietnam? That when the going gets tough we should cut and run? Or that when the going gets tough, damn the politicians and let the generals unleash the fury of hell?

Frankly I'm with the latter. The former got us Moghadishu. The latter got us Normandy. We need to pick our battles, but once we're in them, we had better do everything in our power to win.


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