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Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Chafee's blockbuster

Former Senator Lincoln Chafee, the only Republican to vote against war with Iraq, is shedding a little more light on the decision to vote for war against Iraq:
As Mr. Bush pressed insistently for war, Chafee requested a meeting with CIA brass to examine the evidence against Saddam Hussein's regime. "Sooner or later, I have to vote on this war, show me everything you have," Chafee requests of the CIA.

"What they had, I discovered as the meeting stretched into an hour, was next to nothing," recalls Chafee. "They showed me what they had with little comment and no enthusiasm. Someone handed me one of the infamous aluminum tubes, the kind we were told Saddam was using to enrich weapons-grade uranium while plotting mushroom clouds over America, the 'smoking gun' that Condoleezza Rice warned about.

"I looked at the aluminum tube, looked at the analysts and thought, I can go buy one of these at Adler's Hardware," the Providence hardware emporium, writes Chafee.
And Chafee has plenty to say about the role of the Democrats:
"I find it surprising now, in 2008, how many Democrats are running for president after shirking their constitutional duty to check and balance this president," writes Chafee. "Being wrong about sending Americans to kill and be killed, maim and be maimed, is not like making a punctuation mistake in a highway bill.

"They argue that the president duped them into war, but getting duped does not exactly recommend their leadership. Helping a rogue president start an unnecessary war should be a career-ending lapse of judgment."

Chafee writes of his surprise at "how quickly key Democrats crumbled." Democratic senators, Chafee writes, "went down to the meetings at the White House and the Pentagon and came back to the chamber ready to salute. With wrinkled brows they gravely intoned that Saddam Hussein must be stopped. Stopped from what? They had no conviction or evidence of their own. They were just parroting the administration's nonsense. They knew it could go terribly wrong; they also knew it could go terribly right. Which did they fear more?"
Democrats like Clinton (and Edwards) were not "duped." They were willing accomplices, figuring that if the war went "wrong" (i.e., lasted for years at a cost of trillions and hundreds of thousands of lives) they would pay little price (safety in numbers), but if the war went "right" (over quickly with little cost in lives and a new long-term, inexpensive supply of oil) they would pay a huge political price if they had opposed to it. "National security" had nothing whatsoever to do with it (and, of course, the same is true on the Administration side).

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