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23.7.07 1927
The 7 - Current Events & Politics - The difference between Iraq and North Korea
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Pool-Boy
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#1 Posted on 30.1.03 1432.10
Reposted on: 30.1.10 1437.15
I have heard many people call Bush a hypocrite, because he is willing to go to war with Iraq because of THEIR Weapons of Mass Distruction, but we are not threatening that with North Korea, who has declared a nuclear weapon. In addition, we have massive amounts of our own, and if we can have them, why can't everyone else?
Well, I think there is a big difference in all three situations (well beyond the 12 years of diplomacy that Iraq got vs. North Korea being a relatively new problem).
I, for one, am not worried about North Korea using their nukes, just like I am not worried about us using OURS. There are three ways you can handle the development of nuclear weapons (and other WOMD)- the first two involve declaring them.
1- Deterrant. The strategy of Mutually Assured Destruction is a very scary one indeed, but there can be no denying its effectiveness. The United States practices this use of nukes. We tell the world that we are armed with these weapons so that if anyone even thinks about using such weapons on us, we will retaliate in kind. No one wants nuked, so no one attacks us. India and Pakistan, as loud and angry as they are, will likely never nuke each other because of this very principle. This is a time tested defensive use of these weapons, and not a true threat to World Peace.
2- Negotiating Leverage. This strategy is also peaceful in nature, and is what North Korea is using now. They declared to the world their nuclear capabilities in an effort to gain attention to their problems, and leverage in negotiations. They are a "nuclear power" and will be respected by the world. It may sound agressive, but in reality, it is mostly huff and puff. These nations are well aware of M.A.D. and are not willing to attack using their weapons because not only will it result in their own demise, they cannot possibly have enough weapons to cause equivalent damage to the nation that evenually wiped them out. North Korea is in dire straights right now, but has a bad case of pride. Yes, it requires a very delicate diplomatic game, but no- there is very little danger that they will use their nuclear capability in an offensive fashion.

The third WOMD strategy is, by far, the most dangerous. A nation which keeps their weapon capability secret is, by far, the most dangerous kind. The only possible reason to keep such weapons programs secret (in light of the docterine of M.A.D.) is the fact that you plan to use them in an offensive manner.
Iraq is not threatened by M.A.D. Even if Iraq used Nuclear Weapons against one of his neighbors, it is highly unlikely that a third-party nuclear power will launch against him. And the more time that passes, the more likely Saddaam will get away with his agression.
Hussein has already proved that he is willing to use WOMD, in using them against his own people. He has been far less than forthcoming to UN weapons inspectors, and if Bush's claims of proof that he still has these weapons pan out (Febuary 5th is a key date for that), it is would be clear that we have a dictator who has WOMD, who is developing Nukes, and who has a history of hostility against his neighbors (see Kuwait).
Americans would be less than open to taking a Nuclearly armed Iraq (or any other nation, for that matter), yet that is what the "anti-war" requirement for an attack is - Saddaam does not actually have nukes so we should not attack him for it.
I guess my point in all of this is not to say that you cannot argue against war, but rather if you are, to attack Bush for hypocricy because of our own WOMD or for not taking the same hard line against North Korea is not valid in any way. Saddaam is a proven thread with his weapons, the United States, North Korea, or even China is not.
Arguments based on facts in support of your ideals is a far more effective than venomous, grandiouse, speculative delcarations against a leader you do not particularily like...

(edited by Pool-Boy on 30.1.03 1232)
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redsoxnation
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#2 Posted on 30.1.03 1441.12
Reposted on: 30.1.10 1441.50
Here is the biggest difference between North Korea and Iraq (and no, its not oil). If North Korea is attacked, you run a pretty good chance of China getting involved again, much as what happened when the UN fought to prevent North Korea from taking over South Korea during the Korean War. Now, I'm not sure about anyone else, but China worries me a hell of alot more than Iraq and North Korea multiplied by 100.
In summary, we fought Iraq once, and we would have won easily if we hadn't stopped on the road to Baghdad.
We fought North Korea once, and it was a draw. And, at the time the Chinese weren't loaded with nukes, as they are now.
Now if we want to get in a war over oil, I say lets attack Venezuela. Not only would it lower oil costs, but we might finally be able to obtain the evidence behind the 1992 suspicious car crashing into a bridge of Carlos Quintana, thus costing the Q his position with the Red Sox.

(edited by redsoxnation on 30.1.03 1545)
MoeGates
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#3 Posted on 30.1.03 1506.48
Reposted on: 30.1.10 1507.27
Well, I think the hubbub about us having WOMD, we're such hypocrites, etc. is really silly. I won't even address that. Now France, on the other hand...

While I'm not terribly pro or anti-war, Saddam Hussein certainly understands the principle on Mutually Assured Destruction. He's not a nutcase, he's a very canny survivor.

Even if Iraq used Nuclear Weapons against one of his neighbors, it is highly unlikely that a third-party nuclear power will launch against him.

Are you serious? You really think Saddam could use an actual nuclear weapon without retaliation? I mean, if we didn't have the balls, Russia sure would, and even if Russia wouldn't, Israel (and probably India too) sure as hell would. In fact, it's a lot more likely than China or Russia (or even us) launching a nuclear strike against North Korea if they use a nuke.

Hussein has already proved that he is willing to use WOMD, in using them against his own people.

I've got to say, I really don't understand the difference between gassing "your own people" (which in this case means "people who are in the country you control, as I hardly think the Kurds are Saddam's "own people") and deliberately starving millions of them. Would it be better if Saddam had just used regular old guns to kill those Kurds or something?

I've also got to bring up the fact that this country has used biological warfare against it's own people, most notably with the Tuskeegee experiment. Are the circumstances different? Sure. But that whole "he uses WOMD against his own people!" soundbyte as a justification for war is stupid.

He has been far less than forthcoming to UN weapons inspectors

Well, I think there is a big difference in all three situations (well beyond the 12 years of diplomacy that Iraq got vs. North Korea being a relatively new problem).

North Korea is not a "relatively new problem." Iraq is a "relatively new problem." North Korea has been a sworn enemy of the United States for over 50 years. Us and Saddam were buddies 15 years ago. North Korea has engaged in a massive military buildup, and has tried to aquire every weapon they could get close to making at the expense of starving their population. We had a narrowly averted nuclear crisis with North Korea in 1994. We've kept 50,000 troups stationed on their border since 1953. It's not like this country popped up out the blue a year ago saying "we're trying to get nukes now."

North Korea lied about their nuclear program for at least 9 years. They weren't more forthcoming to UN weapons inspectors because there were no UN weapons inspectors there.

I don't know either Saddam Hussein or Kim Jong Il. I don't know who's crazier, or who's more savvy, or who's more likely to use what if they have it. I don't know that Saddam isn't trying to get nukes in order to get "negoting leverage."

The third WOMD strategy is, by far, the most dangerous. A nation which keeps their weapon capability secret is, by far, the most dangerous kind.

??? Every armed nation keeps some of its weapon capability secret. Israel has never declared they have nukes. India and Pakistan only did a few years ago. The US and Russia kept their chemical and biological warfare programs secret for years. North Korea only admitted their nuclear program when we PRODUCED EVIDENCE (not like with Saddam) catching them red-handed. And God only knows what the Chinese have.

Americans would be less than open to taking a Nuclearly armed Iraq (or any other nation, for that matter), yet that is what the "anti-war" requirement for an attack is - Saddaam does not actually have nukes so we should not attack him for it.

So what is the "pro-war" requirement for an attack? That a country not have nukes? Lot of countries on that list...including North Korea, but not for long.

The false choice is either a) we attack Saddam or b) we let him alone to develop the bomb. I think we're taking a good middle course right now. It's annoying, sure. Do you just want to smack the guy? Sure. But if there is a way to make sure he is not a threat without going to war, I don't see why that's not our first choice.

Arguments based on facts in support of your ideals is a far more effective than venomous, grandiouse, speculative delcarations against a leader you do not particularily like...

Um, what is Bush doing if not using "venomous, gradiouse, and speculative declarations against a leader he doesn't particularly like?"

Well, cheap points aside, this is a factor. Lots of liberals (myself included) simply don't trust Jr. with anything, the same way lots of conservatives simply didn't trust Clinton with anything. If this was Cinton talking, would you take him at his word as far as his motives go? Wouldn't you be suspicious of "wag the dog" scenarios or shady politics factoring into the decision?

I don't mean to get into an argument of Clinton vs. Jr. Just know that a lot of liberals feel EXACTLY the same way about Jr. They don't trust him, and the other stuff comes from that.

Honestly, if there is one thing I hope we get out of this, it's "don't arm people who might not be your buddies forever." Unfortunately, we still supply the Saudis with ungodly amounts of weapons. And we'll probably be having this same situation with them in 15 years, if not sooner.


(edited by MoeGates on 30.1.03 1614)
vsp
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#4 Posted on 30.1.03 1509.34
Reposted on: 30.1.10 1517.01

    Originally posted by Pool-Boy
    A nation which keeps their weapon capability secret is, by far, the most dangerous kind. The only possible reason to keep such weapons programs secret (in light of the docterine of M.A.D.) is the fact that you plan to use them in an offensive manner.



Um, no.

Before you can practice one of the "peaceful" situations you described (using nukes as a deterrant via MAD, or for negotiating purposes), you have to POSSESS nukes. How did North Korea obtain nukes? Explicitly through situation three (keeping their weapons program secret), a method which you shred above.

So which is it? Are the North Koreans dangerous predators ready to use their newly-revealed nukes in an offensive manner, or did they build nukes under cover of darkness for use as a "peaceful" deterrant (particularly when the front man for the biggest nuclear-owner in the world went out of his way to call them "evil" and a threat a year ago)? If it's the latter, how _should_ they have gone about obtaining nukes for that purpose? They couldn't exactly run down to the local Kwik-E-Mart and pick some up.

This is not to say that North Korea plus nukes is a GOOD concept... but if you justify their ownership for defensive purposes, it's hard to turn around and say that anyone who doesn't have nukes, but wants them is going to use them offensively.


    Next quote:
    Iraq is not threatened by M.A.D. Even if Iraq used Nuclear Weapons against one of his neighbors, it is highly unlikely that a third-party nuclear power will launch against him.


Say what? Explain where your logic is going here.


    Next quote:
    Americans would be less than open to taking a Nuclearly armed Iraq (or any other nation, for that matter), yet that is what the "anti-war" requirement for an attack is - Saddaam does not actually have nukes so we should not attack him for it.


That's a simplistic description. The anti-war contingent is screaming because weapons haven't been found in Iraq, the inspectors have come up virtually empty-handed so far in Iraq, yet Bush and Rumsfeld swear that the only two possible choices are (a) either the inspectors catch Saddam red-handed with Weapons of Mass Distraction, or (b) Saddam is hiding his Weapons of Mass Distraction where the inspectors can't find them.

They scoff at option (c) -- that Saddam _doesn't have_ Weapons of Mass Distraction, yet they seem to expect the world to take their word for it. Pardon me if I'm a bit skeptical, given the participants' track records, without something more substantial than "He's Hitlerish" to go on.
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#5 Posted on 30.1.03 1529.02
Reposted on: 30.1.10 1529.44

    Originally posted by MoeGates
    I mean, if we didn't have the balls, Russia sure would, and even if Russia wouldn't, Israel (and probably India too) sure as hell would. In fact, it's a lot more likely than China or Russia (or even us) launching a nuclear strike against North Korea if they use a nuke.


I guarantee that Israel would. Israeli policy states that if Iraq(or any of their Arab rivals: people suspect that Iran could have the bomb, but it's not likely) let's their birds fly, Israel will respond in-kind without hesitation.
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#6 Posted on 30.1.03 1535.43
Reposted on: 30.1.10 1537.18

    Originally posted by Grimis

      Originally posted by MoeGates
      I mean, if we didn't have the balls, Russia sure would, and even if Russia wouldn't, Israel (and probably India too) sure as hell would. In fact, it's a lot more likely than China or Russia (or even us) launching a nuclear strike against North Korea if they use a nuke.


    I guarantee that Israel would. Israeli policy states that if Iraq(or any of their Arab rivals: people suspect that Iran could have the bomb, but it's not likely) let's their birds fly, Israel will respond in-kind without hesitation.





Remember, Israel already did a pre-emptive strike on Saddam back in '81 to take out his nuclear capabilities. Think that looks like a good move these days?
Corajudo
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#7 Posted on 30.1.03 1731.50
Reposted on: 30.1.10 1732.15

    Originally posted by vsp
    The anti-war contingent is screaming because weapons haven't been found in Iraq, the inspectors have come up virtually empty-handed so far in Iraq, yet Bush and Rumsfeld swear that the only two possible choices are (a) either the inspectors catch Saddam red-handed with Weapons of Mass Distraction, or (b) Saddam is hiding his Weapons of Mass Distraction where the inspectors can't find them.

    They scoff at option (c) -- that Saddam _doesn't have_ Weapons of Mass Distraction, yet they seem to expect the world to take their word for it. Pardon me if I'm a bit skeptical, given the participants' track records, without something more substantial than "He's Hitlerish" to go on.



From the reports of the inspectors and the testimony of Hans Blix, the inspectors have not come up with anything because the Iraqis have not cooperated and have not done what they said they would do (I believe Blix referred to material breaches of the agreement by the Iraqi government).

From the last sentence, I'm having some troubles understanding which participants' track records leave you skeptical? I assume this is a slam at Bush and Rumsfield.

However, there are other track records we can examine. There's Hussein, whose track record is plenty bad, one might even make the case it's worse than Bush's (tongue planted firmly in cheek). We also have the U.N, which just named Libya as the head of its Human Rights Commission. Then, there's Germany and France who declare that all of Europe opposes the use of force in Iraq...err...with the slight exception of 8 nations and England. Furthermore, we have the historic anti-Semitic tendences of all these groups (although in Hussein's case, it would be more accurate to depict him as anti-everyone-but-him).

Lastly, I am not a fan of Bush or Rumsfield either. Whether or not one agrees that Hussein should be removed, there are many other difficulties with Bush's strategy (and I use the word 'strategy' loosely). There is absolutely no logical, consistent, coherent long-term foreign policy strategy (in Iraq or anywhere) nor is there a plan for what will happen in Iraq after Hussein's removal nor is there an exit strategy in Iraq. Examining the results of their "long-term strategy" in Afghanistan tells me why we all should have doubts here.

As far as North Korea goes (to address some other comments), they will never get rid of their nukes and they will never stop trying to develop their nukes. It is their ONLY bargaining chip and the only leverage they have. Without this, they have no leg to stand on and no ability to influence anyone or anything.
PalpatineW
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#8 Posted on 30.1.03 1755.08
Reposted on: 30.1.10 1759.01
    Originally posted by vsp

    They scoff at option (c) -- that Saddam _doesn't have_ Weapons of Mass Distraction, yet they seem to expect the world to take their word for it. Pardon me if I'm a bit skeptical, given the participants' track records, without something more substantial than "He's Hitlerish" to go on.



Given the participants track record and the risks involved, I will need more than "We destroyed 'em, honest," to trust Saddam. If you want to gamble your life that Saddam is truly not a threat, then please move to France.

And read your own words again. You need something more substantial than "he's Hitlerish?" You know, he resembles that guy who defied international treaty and bullied his neighbors, all the while killing a certain race of people... but, eh, who says it'll happen again, right? Appeasement has worked so well in the past.

(edited by PalpatineW on 30.1.03 2233)
vsp
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#9 Posted on 31.1.03 0859.14
Reposted on: 31.1.10 0859.18

    Originally posted by PalpatineW
    Given the participants track record and the risks involved, I will need more than "We destroyed 'em, honest," to trust Saddam. If you want to gamble your life that Saddam is truly not a threat, then please move to France.



Nah, no thanks. I like it here, and laugh loudly at people who think that "America -- love it or leave it" should be the only two choices.


    Next quote:

    And read your own words again. You need something more substantial than "he's Hitlerish?" You know, he resembles that guy who defied international treaty and bullied his neighbors, all the while killing a certain race of people... but, eh, who says it'll happen again, right? Appeasement has worked so well in the past.



Yes, I do need more than name-calling to justify an aggressive military campaign. I do need more than just Dubya's say-so (or yours) that the resemblance you speak of is accurate. Is that so hard to understand?
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#10 Posted on 31.1.03 0950.25
Reposted on: 31.1.10 0955.49

    Originally posted by redsoxnation
    If North Korea is attacked, you run a pretty good chance of China getting involved again, much as what happened when the UN fought to prevent North Korea from taking over South Korea during the Korean War. Now, I'm not sure about anyone else, but China worries me a hell of alot more than Iraq and North Korea multiplied by 100.


The real reason we don't attack North Korea is not China. It's the simple fact that North Korea is capable of firing hundred of thousands of artillary shells into Seoul with only three hours notice.
Would we be invading Iraq if we know their will be a million causaulties on the first day?
Enojado Viento
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#11 Posted on 31.1.03 1350.11
Reposted on: 31.1.10 1352.56

    Originally posted by rabidzebra

      Originally posted by redsoxnation
      If North Korea is attacked, you run a pretty good chance of China getting involved again, much as what happened when the UN fought to prevent North Korea from taking over South Korea during the Korean War. Now, I'm not sure about anyone else, but China worries me a hell of alot more than Iraq and North Korea multiplied by 100.


    The real reason we don't attack North Korea is not China. It's the simple fact that North Korea is capable of firing hundred of thousands of artillary shells into Seoul with only three hours notice.
    Would we be invading Iraq if we know their will be a million causaulties on the first day?



And more importantly, if Seoul gets bombed . . .who will stitch our Nikes for pennies a day? Suckas gots to know.
redsoxnation
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#12 Posted on 31.1.03 1400.14
Reposted on: 31.1.10 1400.14

    Originally posted by Enojado Viento

      Originally posted by rabidzebra

        Originally posted by redsoxnation
        If North Korea is attacked, you run a pretty good chance of China getting involved again, much as what happened when the UN fought to prevent North Korea from taking over South Korea during the Korean War. Now, I'm not sure about anyone else, but China worries me a hell of alot more than Iraq and North Korea multiplied by 100.


      The real reason we don't attack North Korea is not China. It's the simple fact that North Korea is capable of firing hundred of thousands of artillary shells into Seoul with only three hours notice.
      Would we be invading Iraq if we know their will be a million causaulties on the first day?



    And more importantly, if Seoul gets bombed . . .who will stitch our Nikes for pennies a day? Suckas gots to know.






Bombed out rubble means less overhead, so Nike can pay the workers even less in South Korea, and Phil Knight can be even happier.
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#13 Posted on 31.1.03 1415.53
Reposted on: 31.1.10 1417.15

    Originally posted by Enojado Viento
    And more importantly, if Seoul gets bombed . . .who will stitch our Nikes for pennies a day? Suckas gots to know.


Why do you think we're normalized relations whit Vietnam?
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#14 Posted on 31.1.03 1734.34
Reposted on: 31.1.10 1735.02

    Originally posted by PalpatineW


    Given the participants track record and the risks involved, I will need more than "We destroyed 'em, honest," to trust Saddam.

    (edited by PalpatineW on 30.1.03 2233)



Before I make my point, let me state that I've gone back and forth on the wisdom of invading Irag a couple of times.

Having said that, here's a thought experiment that I think is worthwhile: Suppose that Saddam really doesn't have any WOMD. (Again, for emphasis - I don't believe this is neccissarily the case - it's just for the sake of argument)

So, supposing Iraq has no WOMD - how do they prove that? I couldn't prove that I don't have WOMD. Even if someone searched my apartment, they could claim that I have them in a storage room somewhere. How could I definitively prove that I don't? While none of us like taking Saddam's word that Iraq has disarmed, the burden of proof remains on the US and the UN, because it is logically impossible for Saddam to provide definitive evidence that Iraq is without WOMD.

The way the US has framed the issue, every possible outcome results in military action against Iraq:

1) Iraq has weapons, which are proved to exist: US action - invade.

2) Iraq has weapons, which go undiscovered: US assumes Iraq is hiding weapons, and invades.

3) Iraq has no weapons, which go undiscovered: US assumes that Iraq is hiding weapons, and invades.

This is unfair, because in the (very slight) possibility that Iraq really has disarmed, there is NOTHING that Saddam can do to stave off invasion. That is the reason that a lot of people want inspections to continue, until there is proof.

Now, before someone replies - "Saddam doesn't deserve fair treatment!" - my answer would be this: No, he doesn't, but if America demonstrates that it is willing to act unfairly in this instance, there will be a lot more anti-american sentiment in the future. Whis isn't good. The best thing America has going for it, in the eyes of the rest of the world, is it's reputation for freedom and fairness. It's not worth anything to screw that up, in my opinion.
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#15 Posted on 31.1.03 1921.17
Reposted on: 31.1.10 1924.14
The problem with that Mr. HeatMiser is that we know for a fact that Iraq HAD WOMD. He has used them before against Iran and in his own country. We are 99% sure that he did not use up all of his WOMD back before 1991. This is the information we have gotten from defectors and other intel. Now lets assume that he has destroyed all of his WOMD back in 1992. There must be some trail saying that his happen. Paper orders tell them to get destroy the material, Records of where they disposed them all. Empty shell casing like the ones what were found. These records must exist somewhere if these weapons destroyed. Iraq must show these to the UN. As of now they have not.

Its like the movie Brewster's Millions. Richard Pryor needs to prove that he has spend all of the $30 million to be able to inherit the $300 million
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#16 Posted on 31.1.03 2052.19
Reposted on: 31.1.10 2054.44
Right, but still, basic logic applies. Yes, they did have WoMD at one time. But you can't prove something false... I'm trying to remember an example, but it's a pretty basic tenet of logic. How exactly are they supposed to prove that they no longer have anything? We could always accuse the records of being falsified, in calvin's case.
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#17 Posted on 31.1.03 2053.50
Reposted on: 31.1.10 2054.45

    Originally posted by drjayphd
    Right, but still, basic logic applies. Yes, they did have WoMD at one time. But you can't prove something false... I'm trying to remember an example, but it's a pretty basic tenet of logic. How exactly are they supposed to prove that they no longer have anything? We could always accuse the records of being falsified, in calvin's case.


What they are trying to prove is that they destroyed something, not that they have nothing. It's much like asking for a receipt.
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#18 Posted on 31.1.03 2106.43
Reposted on: 31.1.10 2114.14
Wow, friggin kudos to calvin for working a Brewster's Millions reference into a thread about WOMD. Awesome. Now, if someone could bring up something to let me throw out something about WaterWorld...

With regards to politics and current events, outside of the Yanks signing more and more starters, I am admittedly not as wise as I would like to be. I am working on this, of course. My question would be:

Let us say that no one finds WOMD in Iraq, and for whatever reason, plans to invade, strike, punish, or pave Iraq get called off. What happens then? What, if anything, will come about in, around, or generally regarding Iraq?
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#19 Posted on 31.1.03 2132.14
Reposted on: 31.1.10 2133.39
    Originally posted by PalpatineW
    What they are trying to prove is that they destroyed something, not that they have nothing. It's much like asking for a receipt.


Would that be anything like the receipt we kept when Ronnie sold them the weapons in the first place? Of course, Sadaam was a "Freedom Fighter" then.


(edited by DJ Ran on 31.1.03 2232)
PalpatineW
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#20 Posted on 31.1.03 2151.15
Reposted on: 31.1.10 2152.09
    Originally posted by DJ Ran
      Originally posted by PalpatineW
      What they are trying to prove is that they destroyed something, not that they have nothing. It's much like asking for a receipt.


    Would that be anything like the receipt we kept when Ronnie sold them the weapons in the first place? Of course, Sadaam was a "Freedom Fighter" then.


    (edited by DJ Ran on 31.1.03 2232)



Hindsight is 20/20. At the time, Iran was more of a concern. Are you going to argue that we were wrong to ally with Stalin to defeat the Axis in WWII?

Edit: Also, you're overlooking French and German involvement in arming Iraq.

(edited by PalpatineW on 31.1.03 2254)
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