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Iraq: snatching defeat from the jaws of victory

anti-war photo
anti-war photo
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

Here's a curious news item from Associated Press:

The Islamic State extremist group has taken control of a vast former chemical weapons facility northwest of Baghdad, where remnants of 2,500 degraded chemical rockets filled decades ago with the deadly nerve agent sarin are stored along with other chemical warfare agents, Iraq said in a letter circulated Tuesday at the United Nations

Sarin nerve agent with other chemical warfare agents put into rockets and launched into populated areas is a weapon that can cause mass destruction, isn't it? Not destruction as in buildings and bridges but destruction as in genocide.

The story continues:

The U.S. government played down the threat from the takeover, saying there are no intact chemical weapons and it would be very difficult, if not impossible, to use the material for military purposes.

Which means the U.S knew about the storage facility, but don't worry, nothing is "intact".

Remember when it was charged that president Bush led us into war by lying about weapons of mass destruction? I guess now that charge was wrong. But it was a phony case to make because the world knew that Saddam Hussain had used these weapons for the very purpose of genocide and launched these weapons onto Iraqi Kurd and Shia provinces thus causing destruction of lives on a massive scale. The only question was, where were the leftovers?

But the search for leftovers became a political football. If president Bush weighed heavily on wmd's as the rationale for toppling the Iraqi regime and these weapons weren't readily found in the early months or years of U.S takeover, did that mean we should have left Saddam in power?

And that is the very charge Democrats made and are still making in their opposition to the Iraqi war.

These are irrefutable facts of the Saddam regime: 1. he was genocidal and under UN treaty forfeited his right to run a country and signatories of the treaty were duty bound to oust him. 2. harboring terrorist organizations including Al Qaeda of Mesopotamia. 3. Promoting terrorism abroad by donating $20,000 to families that had their sons or daughters blow themselves up in crowded Israeli streets. 4. A threat to his neighbors. 5. Procession of wmd and the search for more including obtaining nuclear weapons. 6. With Saddam in power, at his death, his sadistic and ruthless sons would have been in charge. What then?

Any one of these alone ought to be a good enough reason to end the career of Saddam Hussain. But in the political circus that started with the campaign of John Kerry for president in 2004, Democrats were able to convince a great many people that the war was based on a "lie" and therefore "illegal" not to mention that Bush and his team were "war criminals".

Harry Reid even went so far as to say the war was lost on the Senate floor during the time when American troops were on the ground fighting the insurgents. In short, Democrats were in full display of irresponsible statecraft (if it can be called that) for political gain and it continues to this day with Obama's withdrawal of military presence in a country with a democratically elected leadership and legislature with an independent judiciary.

This now could all be lost just because Democrats have a fixation on sticking it to Bush. Genocide doesn't matter, a successful democratic state doesn't matter. What matters is proving Bush made a mistake.