Dopey Dupes

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Spiked's Brendan O'Neill has a pithy column about British and American pols and public figures who are complaining that they were "duped" by phoney evidence of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction. Snippets:

On both sides of the Atlantic, opposition politicians, commentators, anti-war activists and even military men claim to have been conned, misled or downright duped by Bush and Blair's pre-war claims.

In truth, if opposition politicians were so easily duped, it is because they always took a tactical approach to the question of invading Iraq, rather than a principled one. The coalition's critics are in no way opposed to the West's right to sit in judgement on Iraq and to decide what should happen there—they would simply have preferred that Iraq had been invaded with the blessing of the United Nations and by a truly international force, rather than by Bush and his British sidekicks. It was the anti-war politicians' own absence of principle that allowed them to be swayed by such unconvincing evidence.

Only dopes get duped. And only cowards blame others for making them make bad political judgements.
Read the whole thing here.

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  1. What will be fun, Mr. Hartin, will be watching you get drafted.

  2. what would have been “fun,” would have been watching Lefty getting blown to pieces by the next attack immediately after 9/11. Fortunately, Gore wasn’t President so Lefty’s still around bitching.

  3. “I note that since we started killing terrorists over there, they have not killed any Americans here.”

    What stunning logic. They haven’t killed any Americans in America since 9/11, perhaps the one terrorist attack was a sign not to do any more.

    They haven’t killed killed any Americans over here since I started drinking, perhaps I am the savior.

  4. well, then Anon, sk?l…
    but there is a strong negative correlation between your masturbation and ann coulter’s books…. “keep it up”, i guess… 🙂

  5. Since our government gave a few million dollars to the taliban a few years ago, when they were harboring al-qaeda, could our government be considered “giving open support to islamic terrorists?” Not to mention the fact we helped arm Saddam and the Taliban in the first place. Maybe we should try being a little less imperialistic and a little more careful who we give weapons too.

  6. “Since our government gave a few million dollars to the taliban a few years ago..”
    Gee Matt, see any good movies directed by fat liars lately? Great source material, dude.

  7. Hey anon at 3:03:

    This is the best i could do on short notice:

    http://www.worldnetdaily.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=30166

    read the first paragraph…not the part about patty murray and her little social programs, the part about our government sending 30 million in aid to the taliban

  8. Far be it from me to make too strong a distinction between the Taliban and the UN & NGOs, nevertheless 43 million was sent by the US for food programs administered by the latter.

  9. Well, it really hasn’t been proven that attacking Iraq put a dent in the desire or ability of terrorists to attack the US. Furthermore, the idea that Gore would not have attacked Afghanistan post-9/11 is a bit of wishful thinking by Republicans if anything. In fact, to be frank, it was Powell and his camp who had to dissuade the Iraq hawks in the administration from attacking Iraq first, at least according to Frontline. Now maybe there were anti-terrorist reasons for attacking Iraq, but were they more paramount than attacking Afghanistan which harbored the very group that attacked the US? Somehow I don’t think the same choice would have come up in a Gore administration in the wake of 9/11.

  10. Croesus is correct. Gore would still be formulating lofty decrees denouncing the Taliban and Sadaam and arguing for the need for regime change.

  11. Or maybe Gore would have implemented the anti-terrorism plan produced by the Clinton administration on day 1 instead of sitting on it for eight months, and we’d all be arguing about prescription drug plans.

  12. and maybe we would have then gotten a mogidishu moment in afganistan and bombed another babyfood factory in the sudan.

    say what you will about rummie, colin and rice, but they are heads and shoulders above clinton’s yes men in carrying out an operation.

  13. “>>did anybody really believe the lies we were fed about the need to invade iraq?

    What lies? I’m still waiting for a credible documentation from the accusers on this one. So far all I have seen is mangled quotes taken out of context.”

    the extraordinary claim was for presence of WMDs. That has not even been close to being established. That burdon of proof still lies on the hawk side. however, it’s been noted that the invasion has happened and was a military success. in the bizarre-o world here, being correct until proven otherwise works for the republicans (here, somalia — clinton fucked it up) and kills democrats (yugoslavia, haiti, clinton-somalia). or even “wagging the dog”.

    it would be fun to see the liberals and conservatives attack their own sides with the same vigor as they attack each other.
    E “HV” A

  14. holger viking: what will you say if they find them? or will you just say they “planted” them?

    also, do you believe Iraq had a WMD program? and if they didn’t have WMDs what was the purpose of the sacntions and inspections and the prewar warnings from the anti-war crowd of chemcial attacks?

    finally is your crique of the war or of the salesmenship beforehand? do ou believe that deception beforehand (if this happend) cancels out a good deed?

  15. You, sir, are one of the duped dopes referred to in the heading to this post.

    Michael Moore (I know, I know) hit it on the head when he said Bush holds the public in such contempt he won’t even bother to plant WMD. All he has to say is “terrorism” (or is it tourism?) and he gets a pass.

  16. i am not duped, but informed. try reading something not by a stupid, fat white man.

  17. Anon 4:25,

    For operations with purely military objectives, you are correct. I don’t think the Bush team would have turned the boat around because of a few dozens Haitians with machetes on the dock. But when was the last time we had an operation with purely military objectives? I don’t think Karzai would be Mayor of Kabul under President Gore.

  18. “had President Clinton gone in to Iraq in 1998, how would conservatives (or “neo-conservatives”, but that’s not always value-neutral a term) have reacted?”

    not really a fair question, as 9-11 really did change everything (or at least most people perceptions).

    you make a lot of good points, but don’t forget the saudi angle (moving our troops away from mecca, forcing the sauds to deal with their own shit, etc)

  19. still bitter that your vote wasn’t counted Joe?

    sooo predictable

  20. Lefty, the article is not about the true believers, such as anon. It is about those who claim that they would have been against the war had they not been fooled by the prez.

    The cowards will not stand up one way or the other.

  21. SAD NEWS …

    Today, yet another American boy lost his life … Shot to death by an Iraqi sniper.

  22. wasn’t the whole point that this delightful little war could always be justified via the ad hoc hypothesis / ad hoc justification? all of the “threats to the western world” that were advertised did not manifest themselves. but the “world has rid itself of an evil dictator” or the “shredding machines” are no more. there is nothing that now can change the hawks’ or doves’ minds. America would win. Then the next administration could be blamed for messing it up. The victory would justify the action.

    did anybody really believe the lies we were fed about the need to invade iraq? did anybody think it was never going to happen? the people in the American Administration were calling for Clinton to overthrow Hussein back in 1998.

    was iraq a threat locally? undoubedly. was iraq a threat to israel? of course.

    was there a direct threat to the EU or America? not at all.

    is this a good first step in the realpolitik to get rid of the sauds, the real supporters of terror? probably.

    Plus, America could show that it could kick ass again. Probably very important to deter terror further. And it is fun watching Europe fall over itself. This is now two foreign policy failures. The missions in Africa are about to be the third. The Eurofighter will be the fourth.
    –Pehr

  23. >>did anybody really believe the lies we were fed about the need to invade iraq?

    What lies? I’m still waiting for a credible documentation from the accusers on this one. So far all I have seen is mangled quotes taken out of context.

    >>was there a direct threat to the EU or America? not at all.

    I count open support for the network of Islamic extremists who are in the American-killing business as well as the Jew-killing business to be enough of a direct threat to America.

    >>is this a good first step in the realpolitik to get rid of the sauds, the real supporters of terror? probably.

    I hope so, too. See, we agree on something.

    >>Plus, America could show that it could kick ass again. Probably very important to deter terror further.

    See, we agree again. I note that since we started killing terrorists over there, they have not killed any Americans here, and in fact have seen their terror activities rolled back to their home countries. I count that as a success.

    >>And it is fun watching Europe fall over itself. This is now two foreign policy failures.

    Watching the statist/collectivist nations of Europe step on their own dicks in the foreign policy arena is, indeed, fun. I would prefer that they act like responsible adults who have learned the lessons of history, but if they are going to act like children, it is good that they fail visibly.

    Not sure what foreign policy failures you refer to. I see a successful war, followed to date by a reasonably successful pacification and rebuilding campaign (based on historical comparisons to previous pacification/rebuilding efforts).

  24. I enjoyed watching the Bush administration, and even their opponents, turn Saddam Hussein into Stalin or Hitler (not that he wasn’t a brutal fuck, but his regime was hardly the threat they made it out to be). Anyway, none of these people were duped; and even if they were, then that simply shows their stupidity.

  25. if bill clinton waged the war neo conservatives would have been for (actually, wolfy, rumsfeld and cheney petitioned clinton to do so in 96) and conservative conservatives would’ve been against (as was Cato, pat bucnhanan et al. even with bush.) “moderate” democrats and republicans would’ve supported it- actually probably all democrats and most republicans- this was what happened with the condemnation or iraq in 98- and there would have been no anti war movement.nation building would have been decried by conservatives as is occuring anywyas and championed by liberals, as it is anyway.

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