Thursday, June 26, 2003

The 'Weak' in National Review - Byron York goes off on the growing chorus of criticism of Bush for how he made the case to go to war with Iraq. York specifically addresses the lengthy piece written by John B. Judis and Spencer Ackerman at The New Republic. But for all of York's bluster, he never once addresses the real point of Judis and Ackerman's article: the minimization by the Bush Administration of uncertaintly and ambiguity within the Intelligence community about Iraq's possession of WMDs. York seems to think that if WMDs are found, then the critics will have to eat crow. But I think the argument that Judis and Ackerman are making really does not rest on the outcome. It is rather an argument about the transparency of process. The central point is that Bush failed to relate to the American citizens that the intelligence community had some division and uncertainty about the subject. There was no clear intelligence on Saddam's actual possession of WMDs to justify going to war on that reason. That fact will not change regardless of whether we eventually dig up some WMDs - precisely because if we do find WMDs, it will be IN SPITE OF our intelligence, not BECAUSE OF it.

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