The Escape Valve

Demosthenes asks an interesting and worthwhile question in my previous post on Iraq:

So, what are the conditions under which the United States doesn’t invade, and if there aren’t any, why the hell should the U.N. believe a word Bush says?

The conditions have been clear from the beginning. Iraq has to unilaterally disarm. The President’s rhetoric has always been "disarm or we will disarm you" That means every bit of Saddam’s biological, chemical, and nuclear arsenal has to go.

Of course, we know he won’t do that any more than the Taliban would have turned over Osama bin Laden to us in the Afghan War. It’s not in his interest. If he does that, it would probably mean a big enough black eye that he’d be killed in a coup. You don’t play up the Mother of All Battles then suddenly give in to the Evil American Pig Dogs. Granted, there’s always the possibility he might do it if for no other reason than to stay in power, but that doesn’t seem very likely.

I still maintain that we have information that the UN does not about the capabilities and extent of Iraq’s WMD capability. Part of me says it’s because we’re already scouting the country and another part says that we have sources inside the country who are working for us. The reason we cannot hand that information over to the UN is because it would compromise those sources, and we cannot afford that at this point in time. So, our option at the moment is to let the inspections play out in full knowledge that they won’t find anything. (Which isn’t earthshattering. It would take more than a handfull of inspectors a few months to search an entire nation.)

I do believe that war is inevitable at this point. The risk that Iraq poses to regional stability and America itself cannot be ignored except at the greatest peril. The interest of the UN are to find nothing and let the issue blow over, so they will find nothing. The Iraqis are more than willing to help in that issue. The only wrench in the gears is the US who cannot afford to allow things to merely blow over while Baghdad develops a nuclear weapon. In the end, the UN has to know that despite all their efforts to stop the US from removing the Hussein regime, they simply cannot get Saddam Hussein to excersize the one option that would remove the threat of war.

One thought on “The Escape Valve

  1. This is part of the resolution the US agreed to:

    Resolution 1441 (2002)
    Adopted by the Security Council at its 4644th meeting, on 8 November 2002

    The Security Council,

    10. Requests all Member States to give full support to UNMOVIC and the IAEA in the discharge of their mandates, including by providing any information related to prohibited programmes or other aspects of their mandates, including on Iraqi attempts since 1998 to acquire prohibited items, and by recommending sites to be inspected, persons to be interviewed, conditions of such interviews, and data to be collected, the results of which shall be reported to the Council by UNMOVIC and the IAEA;

    Why would the US not give UNMOVIC and the IAEA whatever information it had?

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