by John Hawkins | April 14, 2004 1:45 am
Given that we’re more than a year out from the start of the war in Iraq, fighting has flared up recently, and opponents of the war have been trying rewrite history to take advantage of the fact that our intelligence estimates about WMD in Iraq have proven to be inaccurate, it’s important to remind people why we went to Iraq.
To begin with, it’s important to put the war in context. We must remember that we have been trying to remove Saddam Hussein from power since the Gulf War. Here’s David Frum on that subject,
“In the 2000 election, both candidates spoke openly about the need to deal with Saddam Hussein. Al Gore was actually more emphatic on the topic than George Bush was. In 1998, Congress passed and President Clinton signed the Iraq Liberation Act. Just to show how conspiratorial they were, they put it in the Congressional record. In 1995, the CIA tried to organize a coup against Saddam Hussein and it failed. The coup was secret, but it has been written about in 5 or 6 books that I know of. In 1991, representatives of President George H. W. Bush went on the radio and urged the Iraqi people to rise up against Saddam Hussein. So America’s policy on Saddam has been consistent. What we have been arguing about for years are the methods. First, we tried to encourage a rebellion in Iraq, that didn’t work. Then we tried coups; that didn’t work. Then in 1998, we tried funding Iraqi opposition. That might have worked, but the money never actually got appropriated. Then, ultimately we tried direct military power. The idea that Saddam should go has been the policy of the United States since 1991.” (Cont)
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