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John Adams Blog

The blog of The Antient and Honourable John Adams Society, Minnesota's Conservative Debating Society www.johnadamssociety.org

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Why we should Support the War

Why we should support the War in Iraq. The constant screams and concentration on negative stories from Iraq by the Left requires that the supporters of the war restate their reasons for supporting the war. My reasons remain unchanged. 1) The first reason is that I agree with the “neocon” philosophy that spreading democracy in the middle east is the best and perhaps the only reasonable way to reduce the risk that nuclear weapons will be used against us by terrorists. History shows that the proliferation of nuclear weapons will be impossible to prevent. However, recent history has shown that there are two philosophies that can prevent their use. The first is to use deterrence or “mutually assured destruction.” While deterrence may work with an enemy or “competitor” such as the USSR, China, or North Korea, deterrence will not work against the terrorist on Jihad. The other way is to create free and democratic societies who choose not to create nuclear weapons or would not use them because it is not in their own public interest. I believe that it is possible to reorganize tyrannical states to reject proliferation. President Bush often states that with nuclear weapons, we need to act preemptively to prevent a threat from becoming imminent. I agree with this theory for both the obvious reasons of preventing one of our cities from being nuked, but also for the long term reason. If we were hit by nukes and ultimately determined that we could not prevent future attacks, then the only successful response would be complete annihilation of our enemy’s civilization (nuking most of the middle east). This response is nothing new. The ancients often razed societies and killed all inhabitants if the cities could not be converted. The most famous example is the destruction of Carthage. As of 2002, Iraq was the most likely tyrannical state to develop nukes. First, Saddam had a history of aggression unlike any other nation in the world) (Iraq has invaded most of their neighbors under Saddam), Second, Iraq had the government and political means... Saddam had total concentrated power both politically and economically. Saddam could put to death any subordinate with impunity, and could use the entire oil revenue of the country for his own personal means.

2). The second reason for supporting Iraq is a strategic one regarding the war on terror. I believe that invading Iraq was a strategic choice in choosing the location of the battlefield for the War on Terror. Being able to choose the battlefield is half the victory. We did it to the Nazis in World War II and the Soviets did it to us in the Cold War (in Vietnam and Korea.... See also Marathon, Salamis, Lake Trasimene, Tuteburg Forest, Hattin, Agincourt, D-Day as other examples of the importance in choosing a battlefield).History tells us that fighting in Afghanistan is a losing proposition. It is now clear from information obtained from the capture of Khalid Shaikh Mohammed that Osama Bin Ladin wanted the United States to attack him in Afghanistan. A war there would attract all the jihadis from around the arab world and Osama needed another major victory to increase his stature so he could recruit enough followers to achieve his ultimate goal which was to reestablish the caliaphate – united the Arab world under one islamic state. He wanted us to come to Afghanistan because he had beaten the Russians there after a long conflict and he wanted to beat us there too.. Osama was trying to choose the battlefield. The Russians learned quickly that Afghanistan is a terrible battlefield for a modern industrialized army. It is rugged, mountaneous, and full of hiding places.

Second Afghanistan has no sea water port. We could never field a signifcant army in Afghanistan without either having a port or a reliable neighbor. Afghanistan is bordered by Russia, Iran, China, Uzbekistan, etc... none are reliable neighbors. Further, we had no reliable indigenous Afghan allies. We were not friendly with any of the tribes in Afghanistan prior to Sept 11 (i.e. Tajiks or Uzbecks or Pashtuns) These ethnic groups have a long history of duplicity - being on any side that is convenient. Finally, the Afghan people do not have the wealth to sustain a fight against Islamic fascism. Afghanistan is an impovershed country with no natural resources. American forces would have to not only have to stay in Afghainstan for decades, but it would have to operate in Afghanistan to keep the terror camps from being rebuilt.In contrast, Iraq has everything Afghainstan does not. It does not have the reputation of Afghanistan (the graveyard of armies). It is mostly desert and plains and urban - perfect conditions for the modern army. It has a sea port and is bordered by more reliable allies (Kuwait). We also have a long and friendly relationship with the Kurds, an indigenous Iraqi ethnic group. George W. Bush is the most popular foreign person in Kurdistan (and for good reason). Finally, Iraq has an extended middle class with lots of natural resources. This is probably the most important point about Iraq. It means that we can eventually leave Iraq to allow Iraqis to finish the war on Terror. Further, the Iraq war has drained all the jihadi manpower from the war in Afghanistan.

Thus, the war in Iraq allows us to achieve victory in Afghanistan because Al Queda puts no resources into Afghanistan and the proximity of Iraq attracts all the Jihadists and all the MONEY (who would have gone to Afghanistan).

Blogger King Oliver said...

While I agree with Sloanasaurus that the attack on Saddam was justified by our security interests, I don't see why he thinks that establishing democracies is especially helpful in preventing nuclear proliferation. Israel, India, France, and Pakistan are all democracies that have insisted on developing their own nuclear weapons. (Did Britain develop its own capability, or did we give it to them?) China, the USSR, and North Korea have done so as dictatorships. We can prevent a country from going nuclear either by force or by agreement. If we do so by force, it is not entirely self-governing, and thus not a democracy in a very full sense. But we can do so by agreeent only with a country that has a stable government. Otherwise, the renunciation of nuclear weapons can be renounced by the next government.

We have fostered a revolution in Iraq, and we hope we will get a non-proliferation agreement from the revolutionary government, but the government has no history yet and will not to be able to give up such a significant prerogative of sovereignty until it is much better established than it is. If that process is repeated ad infintium, we will end up with many failures, especially where we abandon the force option.

3:40 PM, June 14, 2006  
Blogger Sloanasaurus said...

I don't think that establishing democracies will prevent proliferation (if I said so I was mistaken), I think proliferation is inevitable. However, I believe that democracies will be less likely to use nuclear weapons against other democracies.

10:59 PM, June 14, 2006  
Blogger King Oliver said...

No one has ever launched a nuke knowing that someone else would immediately obliterate him and every man, woman, child, dog, cat, and cockroach in his country. But there's a first time for everything.

6:11 PM, June 16, 2006  

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