by John Hawkins | October 7, 2002 12:55 am
Go Condi Go: Condi Rice had a lot of brilliant things to say in this speech and I thought they deserved to be read by a wider audience. Do you want to know why we’re going to hit Iraq? Condi explains it for you and also makes it clear that Iraq may be the next nation we’re going to hit but they’re not going to be the last one…
“In fighting global terror, we will work with coalition partners on every continent, using every tool in our arsenal – from diplomacy and better defenses to law enforcement, intelligence, cutting off terrorist financing and, if needed, military power.
We will break up terror networks, hold to account nations that harbor terrorists and confront aggressive tyrants holding or seeking nuclear, chemical and biological weapons that might be passed to terrorist allies.
These are different faces of the same evil. Terrorists need a place to plot, train and organize. Tyrants allied with terrorists can greatly extend the reach of their deadly mischief. Terrorists allied with tyrants can acquire technologies allowing them to murder on an ever more massive scale. Each threat magnifies the danger of the other. And the only path to safety is to effectively confront both terrorists and tyrants.”
Condi also smacks down the idea that we’re going to be constantly hitting other nations pre-emptively or reshaping the entire Middle East to our liking as some have claimed…
“Pre-emption is not a new concept. There has never been a moral or legal requirement that a country wait to be attacked before it can address existential threats. As George Shultz recently wrote, “If there is a rattlesnake in the yard, you don’t wait for it to strike before you take action in self-defense.” The United States has long affirmed the right to anticipatory self-defense – from the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962 to the crisis on the Korean Peninsula in 1994.
BUT this approach must be treated with great caution. The number of cases in which it might be justified will always be small. It does not give a green light to act first without exhausting other means, including diplomacy. Pre-emptive action does not come at the beginning of a long chain of effort. The threat must be very grave. And the risks of waiting must far outweigh the risks of action.”
…We do not seek to impose democracy on others, we seek only to help create conditions in which people can claim a freer future for themselves. Germany, Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, South Africa, South Korea, Taiwan and Turkey show that freedom manifests itself differently around the globe – and that new liberties can find an honored place amidst ancient traditions.”
There’s more in the speech so make sure to check it all out here.
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