Saturday, March 8, 2003

I've noticed that Sean-Paul, Kevin Drum, and (at least I think he did) Josh Marshall have all switched to the opposition.

Now, I've been been waffling back and forth on this for months. I started firmly on the side against war. In October, it looked to me that this war was merely a war for oil. It wasn't until September and October that we even heard about Iraq. It seemed to me from my perspective that Iraq was bottled up inbetween two no-fly zones and they couldn't do a damn thing without our eyes in the sky watching them.

Then, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International laid out the claims of human rights abuses in Iraq. This doesn't sit well with me. It was in December and January that I switched sides and decided that the realistic thing to do would be to remove Saddam Hussein from power. Not to gain control over their oil, but for humanitiarian reasons.

Then, January and February have bought with it cynicism. And because of that cynicism I am deeply concerned, and suspicious, of the Bush Administration and this war. I don't like the comparisons to the 1991 War. The circumstances, no matter how you look at it, are much, much different. How much is this war going to cost? The American taxpayer is a very stingy creature. How many deaths, civillian and military, can we expect? Will Saddam use the weapons on our troops? Will the war spread? What are the guarentees that the Iraqis will welcome us with open arms when the evidence suggests otherwise? Will this war spark more terror? What is our exit strategy?

In addition, I don't like having my patriotism attacked, which has occured whenever I make a criticism of this war. That too, should not occur.

However, my friends and family are over there, right now, awaiting the President's order to begin the fight. And I have to support them, despite the fact that I feel that their boss is leading them to ruin and peril.

I don't know folks. While Saddam constitutes a threat to Israel and perhaps Kuwait and the United States, I don't see his government lashing out. Even so, he could have weapons that could be sold to terrorists. At the same time, I have yet to hear a real reason that I can wrap my brain around for going to war from the Bush Administration. All I've heard is "He's evil. He's Hitler Incarnate. You are all appeasers for questioning." However, my friends and members of my family are on the front lines, ready to go.

Because of all this, I have no real choice. I can't pick a side without feeling guilty about that choice. I am afraid to say that at this late stage in the game, I remain on the fence. I just don't know what to do.

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