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View Diary: Shia Government Orders Iraqi Policewomen to Turn in Guns (101 comments)

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  •  Prior to the invasion, women had (2+ / 0-)
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    Geotpf, kurious

    equal rights in many respects.  This was because, as you stated, Saddam enforced it with an iron fist.  Either way, now, women don't have those same rights.  So what's your point?  And, as someone

    who was comfortable with the war as an act of liberation

    I'd be interested to hear your rationale on that.  It's like you're admitting to having really poor judgment and little knowledge of history.  

    •  Please, no pissing contest about knowledge. (0+ / 0-)

      If it came to that, more specifically expertise prior to the war (obviously you beat me after that point), let's just say that I would do OK.  As for judgment, obviously my judgment was very poor: about Iraq, about the US government's ability to do the job even on its own stated terms, about a lot of things.  Fortunately I'm not running for anything.

      My rationale, since you asked, was that Iraq was, after North Korea, easily the most repressive regime in the world.  (Not the 2nd worst place to live--countries in disintegration like Sierra Leone or Liberia or the Congo DR would have ranked higher, and perhaps even some desperately poor countries at peace--but the most repressive.)  For all of the lies and exaggerations about Saddam's WMD programs, I don't know of a single claim about the repressiveness of Saddam's regime that has been disproven, or even nuanced or qualified, with all that we have learned since the war: it was precisely as advertised by even the most self-interested exile groups and Washington neoconservatives.  

      I believe there's no moral case against overthrowing such a regime.  There are only practical cases: that we might fail (the compelling case against overthrowing the N. Korean government, by the way), or that success there wouldn't be worth this or that potential cost.  All potentially good arguments, all (well, several) vindicated by events since February 2003, therefore my guilty plea to bad judgment.  But the revisionism about Saddam Hussein should really be beneath anyone of at least average morality...especially since it's not even necessary for your case against the war.  

      "What you're saying is so understandable. And really, your only crime was violating U.S. law." Marge Simpson.

      by Rich in PA on Wed Dec 12, 2007 at 10:48:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  You certainly won't get any (1+ / 0-)
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        Saddam revisionism from me.  I'm well aware of what life was like in Iraq prior to 2003.  

        For your "moral case against overthrowing such a regime," you probably want to check out Michael Walzer's Just and Unjust Wars.  It's the gold standard in just war theory classes.

        •  Quick reply (0+ / 0-)

          I'll have to read it.  I googled it and found an excerpt that appears to illustrate the book's main claims:

          (1) There exists an international society of independent states. [...] (2) This international society has a law that establishes the rights of its members--above all, the rights of territorial integrity and political sovereignty. [...] (3) Any use of force or imminent threat of force by one state against the political sovereignty or territorial integrity of another constitutes aggression and is a criminal act. [...] (4) Aggression justifies two kinds of violent response: a war of self-defense by the victim and a war of law enforcement by the victim and any other member of international society. [...] (5) Nothing but aggression can justify war. [...] (6) Once the aggressor state has been militarily repulsed, it can also be punished.

          I reject this, because it's completely anti-humanist: it subordinates the interests of individuals and communities to those of states.  Iraq is a case study of what you get when you do that: a state run amok against its citizens, with no fear of external consequences unless it does some amazingly ill-considered things over a very long period.

          "What you're saying is so understandable. And really, your only crime was violating U.S. law." Marge Simpson.

          by Rich in PA on Wed Dec 12, 2007 at 11:34:58 AM PST

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