Those who oppose war in Iraq are supporting Saddam Hussein.

I know that almost all sincere Iraq war opponents believe that they oppose Saddam Hussein as well as opposing war. However, I maintain that they actually are supporting Saddam. Three reasons why:

  1. The only practical means of toppling Saddam’s Ba’ath Party rule would appear to be an American-led invasion. If the anti-war people succeed in preventing an American attack, they will also succeed in keeping Saddam in power, even though that wasn’t their goal. It would be cold comfort to Saddam’s future victims of murder and torture that the anti-war folks didn’t intend them to be victims.

  2. In a tendentious political debate, the sides become polarized. Anti-war people typically find themselves ignoring or minimizing Saddam’s evil. Here are some examples:[ul][li] In the big peace demonstrations, there was virtually no call for Saddam to obey the UN resolutions and give up his WMDs. They focused entirely on what the US was doing wrong.[] Some anti-war people actually will argue that Saddam is OK because he hasn’t started a war in over 10 years. (This was an argument made by a very smart Chemistry professor friend, who has been President of her professional society.) []Anti-war folks may take an optimistic view of how long it will take Saddam to acquire nuclear weapons. Some of the more extreme anti-war folks have claimed or implied that Saddam is more trustworthy than President Bush.[/ul]3. Saddam cheered the anti-war demonstrations. He considered them to be supporting his regime.[/li]
    For these reasons, I believe that anti-war folks are pro-Saddam, even though that’s not their intent.

Why is this OP in GD?

Just surfing the web, I came across an article in USA Today by Samuel G. Freedman, associate dean of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, taking the same position as the OP.

You are right, we are eating turkey in Thanksgiving, we are supporting Turkey? Although you have “freedom fries” in your lunch, but you are actually supporting French! You are driving a SUV, you are supporting terrorists!

Ariel Sharon is, in my opinion, a very bad man. He supports and extends policies of brutality that I find repulsive. Nonetheless, I do not support an attack on Tel Aviv. If the Security Council were to move to enforce its resolutions as regards Isreal by force, I would oppose such a move.

War is the purest manifestation of evil on Earth (with the possible exception of Carrot Top). It must be regarded as the absolute last possible recourse, when no other course of action is possible, in the face of clear and present danger. Living on the same Earth as vile despots is bad. Killing innocent people in order to improve the situation makes as much sense as pumping kerosene through the fire hoses, or contracting smallpox in order to cure a cold.

Rather than see the US establish the precedent that invading another sovereign country is acceptable behavior if the invading country determines it to be a possible future risk to safety and peace? Yeah, I support Saddam Hussein’s right to retain office for the time being.

Even if the consequences include the future nuking by Iraq of the building in New York City in which I work.

Any questions?

Just out of curiosity, december:
[ul]
[li]Do you support invading China?[/li][li]Are you a supporter of the Chinese Communist Party?[/li][/ul]

december, you got all wrong. Those who oppose war are actually oppose imperialist Bushism.

It has nothing to do with Saddam.

Nope, not me. I just oppose war. If GeeDubya can bullshit the world into obeying the US, I say go for it.

Unfortunately, you’re right. It doesn’t really matter what good intentions have fostered the anti-war crowds, because to Saddam they appear to be support for his position. As you note, there aren’t a majority of marchers demanding Iraqi compliance with inspections or Saddam’s removal from power. Nope. They’re accusing Bush of planning an empire dominated by oil supply control and being anti-Islam in nature. And if we are seeking to gain Saddam’s cooperation, hence the military presence on his border, anything that dissuades his active compliance is counterproductive to the goal of disarmament.

I think you’ve left out the most culpable of all, those members of the Security Council who’ve undermined their own position by making war more likely rather than less. Had France and Germany taken their political opposition to war behind closed doors and maintained a public sense of unity on disarmament, Saddam would have felt the world en masse breathing down his neck, and potentially he would have, finally, conceeded and disarmed. By giving him the sense that the world community would not support force, he has nothing to lose by playing the game the way he’s always played the game.

Let’s just address the real situation we face with regard to Iraq. He has not complied with the ceasefire he personally signed in 1991 and umpteen resolutions since then insisting he do so. If inspections in 12 years have not disarmed his regime, why should it be considered a credible option today?

bolding mine

So, you’re okay with Saddam killing innocent people in his country, just so long as you’re not bothered? You’re okay with him funding suicide bombers in Israel by paying off their families? You’re quite selective in valuating others’ lives, aren’t you?

december: You really do the anti-war cause a lot of good yourself. Although I am more-or-less in the “anti-war” camp, I am fairly moderately and passively in that camp until you start mouthing this sort of nonsense that really riles me up.

And it would be cold comfort to the innocent Iraqi victims of American bombs to know that we didn’t really mean to kill them, i.e., that they are just collateral damage and that we are doing this for their own good.

[quote]

  1. In a tendentious political debate, the sides become polarized. Anti-war people typically find themselves ignoring or minimizing Saddam’s evil. Here are some examples:[li] In the big peace demonstrations, there was virtually no call for Saddam to obey the UN resolutions and give up his WMDs. They focused entirely on what the US was doing wrong.[/li][/quote]

We’ve been over this one before. Do we really need to tread the same ground again and again?

[quote]

[li] Some anti-war people actually will argue that Saddam is OK because he hasn’t started a war in over 10 years. (This was an argument made by a very smart Chemistry professor friend, who has been President of her professional society.)[/li][/quote]

Well, this is your interpretation of what they are arguing. I would tend to believe that they are arguing something closer to questioning whether there is sufficient evidence that Saddam is an imminent danger that we have to invade Iraq. That is far from arguing that “Saddam is OK”. Hell, personally, I don’t think that having Bush in power in the U.S. “is OK” but I don’t favor bombing the White House.

[quote]

[li]Some of the more extreme anti-war folks have claimed or implied that Saddam is more trustworthy than President Bush.[/li][/quote]

Well, I don’t know who has claimed he is more trustworthy. I think that’s naive. Unfortunately, however, we are in the difficult situation of having a battle between two leaders who both have a bad track record when it comes to truthfulness. And, I hardly see how “Bush lies less than Saddam” should be a rallying cry to take whatever Bush says at face value.

So what! He’s fucked in the head. He also uses the U.S.'s aggressive stance toward him to try to fuel a sense of patriotism and desire to defend Iraq from the Iraqi people. Does that mean that such aggressive stances support Saddam? Totalitarian regimes use all the news to their advantage. [I will note here a rather unfortunate analogy to how the current U.S. administration uses any economic news to its advantage in pushing for its tax cuts for the wealthy. Surplus? We need the tax cut. Recession? We need the tax cut. Deficits? We need the tax cut.]

For these reasons, I think your reasoning is ludicrous and that such silly arguments only help the anti-war side. I can guarantee you that they certainly help push me further in that direction.

And, how do you propose practically that they could have done this? They would have had to pass secret Security Council resolutions or something like that? In some sense, I agree with you that the political bickering between the parties has distracted from the goals of the inspections and such. However, I think that this is the U.S. administration’s fault as much as anyone else’s. If the other nations were confident that we had wise leadership rather than a cowboy at the helm, they may be more focussed on the dangers of Saddam and less on the dangers of Bush. However, Bush has given them plenty to be concerned about as well.

Can we please use the T-word for the OP, Moderators? Just this once?

december, I’m actually pretty convinced we should deal with Iraq, but this is just so completely offensive & totalitarian a line of thought that I can’t believe I’m seeing it.
Go look up GW’s Farewell Address. Read the whole freakin’ thing, and understand it. Not just intellectually, but down to your bones. Then go back and read your own OP. You should by then realize just how vomitacious it is.

I do not support Hussain, I want to make that clear right up front. I always felt there was a reason Hussain rhymed with insane.

Now, lets look at it from his point of view.

He’s sitting there, in his snug little country. He is surrounded by people who would eat him alive in a country minute, if he so much as LOOKED weak.

He has a country ten times larger and more advanced than he is, and who hates his guts, demanding that he put into writing every single weapon that he has. Then, when that report is given to the UN, with the understanding it be kept secure, that ten times larger country, that is very much against him, takes that report and does a little copy editing.

He is then told he must distroy every single weapon he owns, except for handguns and tank type stuff.

Put yourself in his shoes. Do you, in cop movies style, put your gun down and back off with your hands in the air? Picture him doing that - I see it now…he backs away, and 20 countries jump him. Everyone wants him, and hey, with a little water, Iraq will make a good addition to – any country that can get a piece of him.

There is no way in hell Hussian could comply with that mandate.

Then, lets take into consideration his ethnic background. Macho has nothing on Iraqi men… they think they invented brass balls. Again I say: There is no way in hell Hussian could comply with that mandate.

And I feel, GWB knew that. I think he knew damn well that Hussian would NEVER comply with that mandate. I think the whole thing was a personal agenda, orchastrated, perhaps a little ‘beverly hillbillys’ music in the back ground.

You sounded like people in this country really give a rat’s a$$ about innocent people around the world being killed?

It’s all about oil and your SUV.

Please.

Did elucidator ever say that we was “okay” with any of these things? Obviously he didn’t. The point is this: not wanting to invade the country is not the same as being “okay” with what they do. Does not wanting to invade Saudi Arabia make a person automatically “okay” with their financial support for Al Queda? Does not wanting to invade China make a person “okay” with their violent supression of advocates of democracy? Does not wanting to invade Zimbabwe make a person “okay” with the current campaign of genocide?

Have you guys read the poll that America is the most dangerous country in the world?

You know, I tried to read the OP, really I did, but my eyes glazed over.

Really, has anything been said here that hasn’t been said in GD at least half a dozen times in the past 2 weeks? Maybe I’m beginning to hallucinate or something. It must be the same drugs that make me think that when I oppose war, I am opposing war. They must have sold me a really primo bagful the last time.

I’ve been to every major demonstration in the Chicago area since the buildup began, and spoken to numerous friends and relatives who have attended the ones in other major cities (notably NY and SF). Out of everyone I’ve spoken to, none of them would agree with a single one of your bullet points.

(THe last point IMO is irrelevant; does anyone really care what Saddam Hussein thinks of the demonstrations, except to the enxtent that he manages to use his own opinion to way public opinion? If you think he’s such a loon, then why do you care about his thought patterns?)

I’ll be happy to dissect the OP in greater detail after a night’s sleep and some caffeine. That is, if I don’t decide to go to tomorrow’s anti-war demonstration instead.