With the increased attacks over the last week, and especially following Sunday's downing of a transport helicopter, it's very easy to go after Bush's Iraq policy based on the disastrous aftermath of the invasion. And it should be done. People need to be reminded that American service men and women are dying because of poor planning and overly optimistic appraisals. Iraqi civilians are paying an even higher price. They need to be reminded that all our efforts have turned a potential terrorist threat, into a real terrorist threat.
But we can't lose track of the big picture. Iraq wasn't wrong because we failed to plan. It wasn't wrong because we didn't find WMDs. It wasn't wrong because Bush lied to us about the danger in the run up to war. And it wasn't wrong because we failed to find links to terrorists. We can't be blinded by blood.
Iraq was wrong because it's a projection of a deeply flawed principal. Preemptive war is both immoral and amoral. As a Christian, I also believe it is a sin. Accepting a policy of preemption is the ultimate expression of selfishness. When a possible threat to our nation, at some indefinite time in the future, is enough to justify the death of thousands, we have abrogated our moral authority. We have placed ourselves on a plane above the rest of humanity. We have devalued the lives of every non-American on the planet.
If we fall into the trap of going against Iraq on it's own merits, we face an endless series of smoke screens. Mass graves. Torture chambers. And the ultimate slap, "So, do you want Saddam back in power?"
Don't play that game.
Iraq was wrong, because preemptive war is wrong. Period. If we surrender on that point, the battle is already lost.