Wednesday, July 26, 2006

shorter hitchens: I was right!

* raimondo:
"What is appalling and frightening is that the Democrats are in many cases worse than the Republicans on the Lebanon invasion question: this means there will be no brake on the administration in taking this road to further "regime change" in the Middle East."

* angryarab:
" In fact, I have always believed that people who can finish a whole column by Kristof should receive a blender as a gift."

* hitchens:
"Now that Joseph and Valerie Wilson's fantasies of having been persecuted by high officials in the administration have been so thoroughly dispelled by Robert Novak..., we may return to the more important original question. Was there good reason to suppose that Iraqi envoys visited Niger in search of "yellowcake" uranium ore?
The subsequent mysteriously forged documents claiming evidence of an actual deal made between Zahawie and Niger were circulated well after the first British report (and may have been intended to discredit it) and have been deemed irrelevant by two independent inquiries in London. The original British report carefully said that Saddam had "sought" uranium, not that he had acquired it. The possible significance of a later return visit—this time by a minister from Niger to Baghdad in 2001—has not as yet been clarified by the work of the Iraq Survey Group.

This means that both pillars of the biggest scandal-mongering effort yet mounted by the "anti-war" movement—the twin allegations of a false story exposed by Wilson and then of a state-run vendetta undertaken against him and the lady wife who dispatched him on the mission—are in irretrievable ruins. The truth is the exact polar opposite. The original Niger connection was both authentic and important, and Wilson's utter failure to grasp it or even examine it was not enough to make Karl Rove even turn over in bed. All the work of the supposed "outing" was inadvertently performed by Wilson's admirer Robert Novak. Of course, one defends the Bush administration at one's own peril. Thanks largely to Stephen Hadley, assistant to the president for national security affairs, our incompetent and divided government grew so nervous as to disown the words that appeared in the 2003 State of the Union address. But the facts are still the facts, and it is high time that they received one-millionth of the attention that the "Plamegate" farce has garnered."

* i want a new rule. as a minimum, before people start new wars, i want them to ask themselves "what happens if we lose?" is that too much to ask?

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