After September 11th, most Americans have sensed the need of defense against the Islamic nations that are waging a war of terror against the West. The Iraqi regime is one of our most prominent enemies, and must be dealt with before it’s too late.
Our policy in the War on Terror, should not be limited to a measure of retribution for the isolated act of terror on September 11th 2001. Our policy should be to make the U.S. safe from future terror attacks, destroying as many terrorist sponsoring countries in the process as this requires.
If we follow this policy, we may yet prevent September 11th 2005, when Islamic terrorists unleash a virus in the U.S., creating a nationwide epidemic that kills thousands of Americans, and September 11th 2010, when Islamic terrorists destroy three major U.S. cities by detonating nuclear devices obtained from an Islamic country sympathetic to their cause. Those events are no more unlikely than Islamic terrorists hijacking four planes and flying two of them into the World Trade Center.
With this in mind, let’s consider the problem of Iraq.
The first thing to notice about Iraq is that it is a totalitarian dictatorship characterized by extreme repression, mass executions, genocidal practices, death camps, and the systematic use of torture–all of it overseen by the all-powerful dictator, Saddam Hussein. This, in itself, makes any actions by the U.S. to topple the government of Iraq legitimate. A proper government rules by the consent of the governed, and any government that is guilty of the mass abrogation of rights, can claim no right for itself, including the supposed right of “self-determination”.
Still, in a world ripe with dictatorships, this is not the reason why action against Iraq is particularly urgent.
In part it is urgent because Hussein, a hero to many Muslims, is one of the most prominent supporters of terrorism today. He is strongly suspected of involvement in the 1993 plot to assassinate former President Bush, which resulted in a retaliatory firing of cruise missiles at the Baghdad headquarters of Iraqi intelligence. Beyond mere suspicions, his support of terrorism is a matter of public record. By offering a $25,000 bounty to the families of suicide bombers, he has become a Godfather of terrorism, enlisting Palestinians as his army of hit men against Israel. As he himself put it: “[a] kiss from us on the foreheads of all [those] who face Zionism and its ally, the US, and who combat aggression with soul and substance”. Hussein is obviously doing what he can to grow the next generation of Bin Ladens in the fertile lands of Palestine.
It is also urgent because Hussein is determined to obtain a vast arsenal of weapons of mass destruction and has a proven willingness to use such weapons. There is evidence that Hussein already has a large cache of chemical weapons of mass destruction. The United Nations Special Commission (UNSCOM) are concerned, for example, about the 600 tonnes of VX precursors not accounted for by Iraq. They could make 200 tonnes of VX, potent enough to wipe out the entire world population if delivered properly. In 1998 former U.N. Chief Weapons Inspector Richard Butler reported that Iraq had placed VX gas in missile warheads. Also in 1998 independent experts and UNSCOM’s own staff unanimously concluded that there were major discrepancies in Iraq’s disclosures, and clear evidence of Iraqi concealment and deceit. Even more disturbing is the evidence of nuclear weapons under development. As Butler put it, Iraq has a “significant weapons-of-mass-destruction program” and may even be close to developing a nuclear bomb. Hussein’s 1998 expulsion of weapon’s inspectors justifies the West in assuming the worst possible state of affairs.
Hussein’s record of past actions prove conclusively that he has no qualms about putting weapons of mass destruction to use. As the U.N. Secretary General Javier Perez de Cuellar concluded in 1986, Iraq made significant use of mustard gas and nerve agents against Iranian soldiers during the Iran-Iraq War. Hussein subsequently continued the use of poison gas and nerve agents against his own citizens, with his 1988 gassing of the Kurds counting as one of the largest chemical attacks ever made against a civilian population. Staggering numbers of human deaths obviously do not restrain Hussein for one second: the Iran-Iraq War which was initiated by Hussein, ended up killing well over a million people. Less than two years later Hussein started a new war by invading Kuwait.
Like Stalin, his hero, Hussein believes that nuclear weapons are the great equalizers among nations. If allowed enough time to obtain missiles capable of delivering his chemical munitions at medium range, Hussein will be able to extend his sphere of terror to Israel and most of the Gulf states. If allowed enough time to obtain nuclear weapons and missiles capable of striking at long range, Hussein will be able to reach well into Europe, and would, like Stalin, be able to cause terror on a world scale. As TIME Magazine put it: “[a] nuke plus a long-range missile makes you a world power.”
Exactly how and when the U.S. should neutralize Iraq, is something to be determined by the government and the military, the ones who have access to all the relevant classified information. What is clear, however, is that before it’s too late, Iraq unequivocally must be taken out. The sooner this happens, the better.