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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • I seem to recall pudge [perl.org] pointing out repeatedly last year the matter of enforcing U.N. resolutions (1205, 1194, and more).

    Of course, there's the matter of U.N. resolutions against Israel, but I like to get around that by claiming the U.N. is institutionally incapable of making an intelligent decision there.

    • The resolutions are an argument in favor of the war and I was considering bringing that up but it seemed such a weak argument that I decided to focus on the "bad man" argument. The UN issue is a curious one. The US often ignores World Court rulings, ignores treaties (in violation of the US Constitution, I might add) and harsh UN rulings against our allies are often vetoed by us. Thus, any argument that our country -- which repeatedly flouts the rule of international law and blocks its application against

      • I still fail to see a problem. Sometimes the interests of the U.S. (ahh, metonymy) align with those of the U.N. Sometimes they don't. International sovereignty, blah blah, why does the U.S. get a vote if disagreement is bad, blah blah.

        The "bad man argument" is just stupid. If I claimed that the 1993 Mogadishu action was just Clinton trying to impress a dumpy fat chick, it'd also be simplistic.

        I do agree that the U.S. has supported a lot of terrible people and makes alliances with some really shady g

        • I'm not sure if you'd prefer that the executive branch waits for perfect action, motives, and information before acting.

          No, I certainly don't think that's reasonable. However, I would argue that supporting blatantly immoral behavior while claiming a moral high ground can undermine support from the international community. While many nations routinely suffer from such hypocricy, to pre-emptively attack another country based upon it is a far more serious thing than condemning behavior while tacitly supp

          • by pudge (1) on 2004.02.17 19:27 (#28551) Homepage Journal
            In The West Wing a few seasons ago they had this thing where the US was supporting a regime that didn't respect women's rights, and the press secretary was complaining to the National Security Advisor (both of them women), and the NSA said, "it's a dangerous world, and everybody has guns, and I'm doing the best I can."

            Pakistan has nukes, propped up the Taliban, probably has Bin Laden in its borders, and its government is the result of a military coup of the democratically elected government. And now we find out they sold nuclear technology to Libya, Iran, and North Korea (well, we knew before, but whatever). But we need Pakistan, because Musharaff is preventing large scale regional war.

            It's not as simple as they are bad, they are good. Yes, a big part of it is that we took out Hussein because we could. Not that it's the only reason, there are plenty. But at the end of the day, we can't take out Mushraff or Kim Jong Il or the Saudi royal family (heh, do we even have enough bombs for all of them? ;-) or other "bad guys" for damned good political and security reasons.

            It's true that I stated the UN resolutions as justification for war, but I don't think I ever believed Iraq had WMD. My main reason for supporting war was -- and still is -- that Iraq prevented a modernization of the region, that it was standing between us and our war with the Islamist terrorists. No, that doesn't mean Iraq supported al Qaeda directly.

            But read the letter the Pentagon released last week: the Islamists are focusing tremendous energy on bringing us down in Iraq for the same reason we focused tremendous energy to get into Iraq, because Iraq is central to the region, and transforming it into a modern, independent, democratic nation will do more to hurt the Islamists than bombs will.