Despite what Scott McCellen says in his new book, despite what democratic blogs have been chanting over and over the past several years, George W. Bush did not start the war against Al-qaeda nor did he start war against Iraq. In fact, it was the other way around.
It was Al-Quadea who waged war against the United States way back in 1992 with the first bombing of the World Trade Center. The terrorist organization continued to be a conundrum for the U.S. all the way up to 9-11.
So, when 9-11 occurred, George W. had no choice but to retaliate by declaring the complete destruction of Al-Qaeda and any other terrorist organization pent on the destruction of the U.S., and the announcement of the Bush Doctrine, which called for the destruction of any nation that harbors terrorists, which included Afghanistan and Iraq, and called for the justification of those wars.
The Taliban may not have necessarily been a part of Al-Qaeda, but it allowed the terrorist group a safe haven, and thus, according to the Bush Doctrine, the Afghanistani government (the Taliban) were terrorists themselves. And, while Saddam may not have been directly linked to the 9-11 bombings or Al-Qaeda, he made no effort to dis-locate Al-qaeda from his country. Thus, he was a terrorist.
This, in my humble opinion, should have been the major basis for declaring war against Saddam. If Bush made any mistakes in the run up to the war, I think it was his insistence on using the idea the Saddam had WOMD over the fact that he was harboring terrorists. It is also known by PLO documents that Saddam funded the families of Palestinian suicide bombers against Israel.
At the same time Saddam continued to snub his nose at the UN and "bluffed" to the world that he had WOMD. He himself even admitted during interrogations after he was captured that he did not have WOMD and he was bluffing all along. He bluffed because if the other nations of the Middle East believed he had WOMD, he had super power status in that region.
So it wasn't just Bush and the CIA who were fooled by Saddam, so were Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, Carl Levin and many other democrats, but republicans too, the U.N., the E.U including France, Spain and Russia, and many other nations and organizations world round. It was not just Bush who believed that Saddam had WOMD. Even Saddam's own scientists believed Saddam had them. We were all fooled.
Either way, Saddam had plenty of time to prove that he did not have these weapons, and he continued to lie about it. He honestly believed the U.S. would be like the U.N. and not act upon its threat. And if the U.S. did not, it would hold no credibility around the world, just like the U.N.
So, when Saddam failed to prove he had no WOMD, something he was totally capable of doing, and when he failed to leave Iraq, something he was given plenty of time to do, he -- Saddam Hussein -- started war against the U.S. Bush clearly put the honus on Saddam's shoulders, and it was Saddam who opted for war -- not Bush.
Yet, while some say WOMD was no reason to go to war since Saddam never had them, Saddam admitted during interrogations that he had every intention of rebuilding his WOMD stash as soon as the U.N inspectors left Iraq, many of whom he had bribed. And his own scientists said point blank that he had all the capabilities to rebuild, if he didn't have them in the first place.
Saddam would continue to be a threat to the security of the region, the U.S. and the rest of the world unless he was taken out of power. And that doesn't even mention the threat he was to his own people. He kept them captive in their own nation. He tortured thousands. He killed hundreds of thousands of Kurds in one day with the wOMD he had at the time. He was a genocidal, unstable maniac who had to go.
There were still other reasons for invading Iraq, such that Saddam continued to defy the Gulf War Cease fire with the U.S. by continuously firing on U.S. and British planes flying in the no fly zones. Based on that cease fire agreement alone, the U.S. was justified in going to war with Iraq. This also would have been a better reason than WOMD for justification for war.
As a bonus, Bush knew that if war with Iraq did occur, and if the U.S. won, that the U.S. would have a stronghold right in the middle of the Middle East where all the unrest seems to occur between Radical Muslims and Israel. And, better yet, the U.S. would have a stronghold right next to another harbor of terrorists -- Iran.
With all due respect, the war in Iraq was one that was absolutely necessary and just. The problem was how to wage the initial war, and how to rebuild the nation and restore democracy after the fact.
It's fine for people like McClellan to disagree with the War in Iraq. The question we ask ourselves is: why didn't he speak up sooner? Why did he wait until his book came out a year later? Was it because of money?
Either way, nothing he said was new news. It had already been said many times by liberals in Washington, liberal bloggers and liberals around the world. And while we hate war too, we do not forget that there are thugs who want us dead, many of whom happen to live in the Middle East, right in the middle of which our troops are stationed -- no wonder they want us out so bad.
And when the anti-war crowd speaks out, they only seem to embolden the enemy. And perhaps that's why the leaders of Hezbola have already endorsed Obama for President of the U.S., not that they have a vote anyway.
Bottom line, Bush did not start this war. His hand was forced by the enemy pulpit.