The Antic Husband is having a slow day, and directs me (who is always having a slow day) to Andrew Sullivan's site once again. What's provoking T.A.H.'s vituperations this time
One lesson of the ferocity of the Saddamite resistance is surely this: who now could possibly, conceivably believe that this brutal police state would ever, ever have voluntarily disarmed? Would a regime that is forcing conscripts to fight at gun-point have caved to the terrifying figure of Hans Blix, supported by the even more itimidating vision of Dominique de Villepin? I'd say that one clear lesson of the first week is that war was and is the only mechanism that could have effectively disarmed Saddam. If true disarmament was your goal, it seems to me that the inspections regime has been revealed, however well-intentioned, as hopelessly unsuited to staring down a vicious totalitarian system.
You can understand his frustration. Iraqis resisting invasion as proof of a "vicious totalitarian system"? T.A.H. responds:
There's no way you can induce from the effort to repel an invasion that the invaded country is itself vicious and totalitarian. The U.S. repelled the Brits in 1812, and technically repelled Iraq's invasion of Kuwait in '92. Not that Saddam's regime is neither vicious nor totalitarian (though, you'd have a hard time perusading me that Baathism equals either Stalinism or Nazism) but Sullivan is apparently too lazy to provide anything but half-comprehended W. rhetoric.
Moreover, how do we arrive at the logic that war is the most effective means to disarm a country? "In this case," messages T.A.H., "it seems to be achieving the opposite effect."
But wait, there's more
The trial of Volkert van der Graaf is revealing that the assassination was motivated by an attempt to stop Fortuyn's criticism of Islamist intolerance. . . This was a leftist extremist hit-job, by someone who had absorbed the anti-Fortuyn propaganda of Europe's liberal elites.
T.A.H. pokes a paperback-sized hole in the argument:
So let's see: Mark Chapman proves that J.D. Salinger wanted John Lennon dead, and Hinckley proves that Jodi Foster and Marty Scorcese had concocted the plot to shoot Reagan. I mean a "leftist extremist hit job"? Who ordered it? What money changed hands? Oh, I forgot: "Europe's liberal elites" It all is so clear now!
Back to regularly scheduled programming.