Hypothetical: What if Hussein had WMDs and had handed them over?

Thinking about the Iraq war, I came up with this hypothetical situation. Let’s say that Saddam Hussein actually had WMDs and upon Bush’s ultimatum, had produced them and handed them over. Would Hussein still be in power today?

I suppose it depends on his timing. Had he caved in right away (when the US first started to really ratchet up the rhetoric and make noises about moving more troops over to threaten Iraq) and basically thrown himself on the tender mercies of the UN, giving them carte blanche to do anything and go anywhere they wanted, I suppose he might still be in charge. I tend to doubt it though…I think the whole WMD thing was simply an excuse to get rid of him, and the US would have continued to try and do so.

A better theoretical to my mind is…if SH had thrown in the towel prior to offensive operations, taken his money and his family into exile, where would he be today? Would he be dead, or living on a beach somewhere collecting 15%? And where would Iraq be today had this happened, had SH and the Ba’athists folded their hands and quietly turned over power to some Iraqi provisional government? COULD such a thing have happened? Did we and the Iraqi’s miss a golden opportunity to resolve this mess in a less violent way?


He did, and he did, after the first gulf war. We chose not to believe him, and attacked anyway. Why would a new handover that proves he violated the UN WMD directives of the 90’s cause us to believe he’s telling telling the truth on a second go around? We’d have invaded anyway.

But, Saddam was evil, I tells ya! Evil! He gassed his own people! We had to save them and start the domino chain of democracy!

It wouldn’t have mattered. Bush would have rummaged through his list of rationalizations and found something that he could make stick, even after the fact. It’s what he did, after all.

I suspect it’d depend on whether or not he agreed to turn over Iraq’s oil rights to American petroleum companies. If not, Bush would have dismissed Saddam’s acts as “not good enough,” and proceeded as originally planned.

So you’re advocating that when a big bully tries to muscle in on your turf and threatens to take your lunch money, the proper course of action is to cave in and run away?

So, you are advocating thinking with your ass (or other parts) instead of your head, ehe? If you can’t win the only reason to put your people through the fire to fight a war you can’t win is principal…anything else is a stupid waste. Not that this was what I was getting at, but yeah…if I’m the local bully on the block and have enjoyed kicking sand in the other kids teeth and stealing their lunch money, it would be wise of me to take my winnings and go to safer climes if another, bigger and meaner bully happens along. Yeah, I think that would be quite smart. Unless I was fighting for principal of course…then I would certainly fight to the death (not hide in a hole). If I’m fighting merely to keep the loot and to be able to keep my boot on the throats of others…

Or are you saying Saddam was an innocent babe in all this rjung? Your analogy wouldn’t be nearly so ridiculous if that were the case, if his billions of dollars hadn’t been extorted from the Iraqi people in various ways, if he hadn’t been the local strong man and thug and terrorised his own people for decades.


Was he a threat to me, my family, or my nation? No, no, and no. So why the hell did the US invade Iraq and overthrow Saddam, while overlooking other tin-plated tyrants around the world, if it wasn’t to be a bully? Especially when the President and his lackeys had to lie about the threat to get support for it?

Mewing over Saddam’s pre-war assholery is a tiresome attempt by the Bush apologists to gloss over the fact that Bush’s Damn Fool War was an immoral atrocity that has shamed the nation.

What has this got to do with anything? If, as you claim, the US was bullying poor wittle Iraq, then he had a choice. Fight to the death or give in. Again, let me put it this way. If you pull a gun on me and ask for my wallet, then I can either let you shoot me or give you the thing. Whats fair, whats right, those things have nothing to do with it. I give you the wallet or you take it. Simple as that.

All the rest is just you looking to jump up and down for poor Saddam. He WAS a bully. His cash was ill gotten. The things he did would turn the strongest stomach. So, when it came down to it and the shoe was on the other foot and a bigger bully came along he had two choices…to leave and let the American’s bully him…or to fight and allow the US to conquer here and eventually put him in a cell. Right and fair and all that other bullshit you are spouting has nothing to do with it. While you can continue to try and get milage that I’m some kind of Bush appologist, I have no sympathy for Saddam and what he did…reguardless of how stupid I think Bush was to go to war with Iraq in the first place.

Personally, call me coward, but I’d choose that beach somewhere earning 15%. With the kind of money he had I’m sure he could have found some lackies to torture or boss around. Sorry but to think of Saddam standing up to the US because of principal is laughable.

Yeah, and glossing over Saddam’s bullying while jumping up and down over the US’s is your own appologist tendencies coming to the fore. I’m not glossing over Bush’s Damn Fool War at all…you are simply looking for a fight here using whatever it takes.


He could have turned over everything- X amount of WMD. BushCo would have insisted that he still had 2X or 3X that amount and we’d have gone to war over the same bad intel and lies.

I don’t disagree with your logic, but I am not sure that it is safe to assume that the actions of egotistical power hungry psychopaths are governed by logic. Also, egotistical power hungry psychopaths dictators often are told what they want to hear, not the truth, which may well impede their decision making still further.


Oh, I get it. We commit atrocities and Saddam commits “assholery.” That puts it all in perspective.

It may be a DFW, but I can’t imagine the type of end-stage callousness you’d have to have to call bringing up - oh, for instance 100,000+ dead Kurds - “tiresome” or “mewing.”

As I’m still undecided, I don’t mind in the least violent opposition to this war. You have thousands and thousands of dead Iraqis to point to to prove your point. But what’s say we not minimize the monstrosity of Saddam’s regime. Because you’re making me nauseous.

No , the UN resolution was worded so that it was to be proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that Iraq’s NBC (Nuclear,Biological,chemical) program was accounted for. Which since 91 , pretty much was.

What most people who decry that there was no weapons , which was really self-evident the moment that troops started to make raids into Bagdad in MOPP-4 suits, that Saddam had no forward deployed weapons. Which really just left legacy programs that had to be accounted for.

Saddam pretty much was a garden variety thug , who as noted in one reply could have been sitting pretty on the French Riv collecting 15% , but could measure his life expectancy in months ,rather than however remaining years. The man made a lot of enemys who would think nothing of terminating him , including the new govt that would want to make sure that he was of no further threat.

The wording of the resolution , plus the ramped up demonization of him , meant that he was pychologically profiled and every button was pushed in the desire to provoke him to fight the peace process every step of the way. Even to the point of video taping his capture in that little hole in the ground was meant to totally destroy his image and recycle it as the after picture for those future dictators who cross an american president.


Yew A-rabs tried to kill mah paw!

Plus oil. Let’s not forget oil.

Oh, yeah, and propagating the Staussian, er, I mean American hegemony…

Wait, did I say that out loud? I meant liberating the oppressed victims of tyranny and standing up for freedom… :rolleyes:

No matter what scenario we build… I think Saddam would not remain in power. Giving up WMD would mean he could build others (?)… and so the only way would be a negotiated exile somewhere away from Iraq.

Certainly no amount of inspections would have satisfied neo-con war thirst… so the WMD surrender would have to have been quite broad and visibile. Obviously since WMD were a bluff… that would have been impossible.

Certainly no one is happy about Saddam alive and well in some exile resort... but the Iraqi might have had a better chance. Or it might have become a mess anyway.... with some kind of civil war erupting sooner rather than later.

Wow, and people accuse liberals of lacking moral values…

“Appologist” [sic] nothing; it’s patriotism.

“My country; and my country is the great American Republic. My country, right or wrong; if right, to be kept right; and if wrong, to be set right.
—Carl Schurz

IIRC, this number turned out to be badly inflated.

I think that the invasion would’ve proceeded. As Mr. Wolfowitz noted, the weapons weren’t the primary reason for the invasion, they were just the reason that would convince the electorate to allow the invasion. Once the idea of Hussein ad an ‘undeterrable madman’ took hold then even the idea that Iraq had scientist who were capable of developing a plan for a weapons development program related activity would’ve been enough.

This thread make me want to vomit in rage.

The line in Die Hard was “sitting on a beach earning twenty percent”.

Do you have a cite? The number I have comes from Samantha Power’s “A Problem from Hell.” Also, I checked a recent Atlantic Monthly article which says Human Rights Watch puts it at 50-100k. Human Rights Watch also puts the total number of those killed in Saddam’s various “campaigns” against Iraqi Kurds, Shi’a, and Marsh Arabs at 250-290K.

Prob’ly somewheres.
Here 'na minute.

Some of you are claiming that Bush would have invaded regardless of whether Saddam had thrown in the towel and fled, but I have to skeptical that congress would have supported the move. If so, would Americans in general have supported it? I’m leaning heavily towards nay.