Sunday, September 26, 2004

The Iraq Debate

An unusually balanced and centrist commentary on the position taken on Iraq by both Kerry and Bush:
Mr. Kerry has given a clearer choice to those Americans who oppose the Iraq intervention, and he has prodded Mr. Bush into a more forceful commitment to seeing it through. That polarization will suit many on both sides. But for those of us in the center -- who supported the invasion, as we did, but have been dismayed by the Bush administration's performance; or who doubted the wisdom of the war, but now believe it essential that the United States not be driven out of Iraq by insurgents and terrorists -- the choice has become more difficult.
As much as I would like to believe otherwise I am starting to doubt if Kerry really does have a coherent set of beliefs on Iraq and "war on terror". His pro-war vote seems to suggest that he swallowed the White House bait about the need for invading Iraq back in 2003. Which is fine - many of us did - I believed in WMD but I distrusted other motives and thought UN should be on board (see In defence of the fence for the best pre-war assessment I could find). If he could just come out and admit that he was wrong then his new position (the war was a "distraction") would actually seem credible and genuine. As it stands it looks more like he's following somebody else's advice, and that's a shame.

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