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How to Persuade a Liberal to Fight Iraq

By Mario Giardiello | Bio

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I was accused recently on the radio of siding against Bush in his war with Iraq just because he is a Republican.  This caller said that I would support the war with a Democrat President.  This comment challenged me to think what it would take to support President Bush in this crusade of his. 

First of all, I would have to believe that our preemptive strike, a move that goes against international rules of war and could set a new, dangerous precedent, was motivated by defending a serious threat to international security.  Saying that Saddam Hussein may use weapons of mass destruction in the future is not good enough; we have to provide proof to the world that, indeed he is going to use these weapons.

Which brings me to my second condition; that we would gather enough evidence against Hussein that he has and is creating weapons of mass destruction.  This evidence would not be controversial, hearsay, or propaganda.  It would need to be indisputable.  This evidence would then be shared with the world.  If it puts our intelligence for future operations at risk, then it should as least be shared with the leaders of the U.N in order to be validated.

The Republican leader I would follow to war would also be a premiere diplomat.  If Bush had the skills of Clinton, Kennedy, or even Nixon in negotiating with foreign leader, it would be easier for me to believe we have exhausted all possibilities before marching off to war.  I truly do not believe that Rumsfield and Bush, although geniuses at business, oil, and war, have the diplomatic skills to reach a compromise with other parties.  They have not been trained in this important skill and it is a skill that is not needed to run a company.  They are used to giving orders, and the world is not receiving their orders too willingly. 

It is hard to trust the richest administration in the history of U.S. politics.  There are ten millionaires in Bush’s cabinet.  Most of these people have made their money in the oil industry, and they collectively have scores of friends, family members, and business partners that are still associated with oil.  It is hard for me to believe that there are no personal gains to be had by these people by controlling the second largest oil fields in the world.  This argument has been shot down by defensive, self-righteous right-wingers who act insulted that someone would think that our government could lie to us. 

The Republican President that can lead me to war would have to earn my trust through past deeds, current concerns, and a sincere concern for the well-being of the country and world, and not for his own self.  This President does not have my trust, nor the trust of half of this country, and most of the world.  When more people think Bush is a threat to world peace than Hussein, than we must question the way we communicate to the world.  If we are right about Hussein’s connection with terrorists -- and we may be -- there are better ways to build coalitions than by intimidation.  



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