Marcus over at The Compleat Iconoclast has thrown down the gauntlet. I asked under what pretext the US could just an invasion of Iraq. Now, I'm no expert on international law, but I'd be willing to bet that something, somewhere forbids invading a country absent an agressive provocation by said country (Iraq, in case y'all were wondering...).
I like Marcus. He's an intelligent guy, and he makes a compelling argument. Nonetheless, since when does invading a country we do not like qualify as "morally right"? I'm not condoning or supporting Saddam Hussein, but is it really the responsibility of the US to remove heads of state not to our liking (well, I suppose that WOULD explain Pierre Trudeau, eh??)?
Morally speaking, we sit at the precipice of a slippery slope. Should we decide to take out Saddam, we need to be prepared to pay the substantial price such an action would exact. Are we prepared for the loss of American lives, which likely would be substantial? Are we prepared to suffer the condemnation of the rest of the civilized world? Further, are we prepared to take out the next despot we dislike, and so on, and so on...?
It's not just a matter of taking out Saddam and being home in time for Christmas. If we invade Iraq, there will be an American military presence there for an extended period, perhaps years. Is that we envision our military as- an occupying force.
I realize that Liberal criticism of a potential invasion of Iraq can be taken as part of our general "live and let live" philosophy. Like any philosophy, Liberalism has it's limitations. Compassion and respect for sovereign governments are not among them, however.
Conservatives rattling the swords of war would do well to realize that the testosterone-soaked rhetoric they employ is not a solution to Iraq's (or our own) problems. We as a nation may feel the need to beat up on someone after 9.11, but that is neither productive nor constructive. We would all do well to remember Mohandas gandhi's wise counsel: "An eye for an eye only makes the whole world blind".
God, I just LOVE a good debate, don't you???