Just a few bullet points based on the latest news coming out of the White House:

  • How is the projected cost of our going to war with Iraq going down? The White House’s current estimate is $50-60 billion. At one time it was $150-300 billion. Clearly these numbers are chosen based on what the White House thinks that Congress and the American people will accept, not on reality. What do they think Iraq has been doing while we’ve spent the past year threatening to attack them?
  • How is Iraq, which probably doesn’t have nuclear weapons, a greater threat than North Korea, which probably has a few and definitely has the capability to make more? It’s certainly looking to me like we feel as though we can bully countries with impunity, right up until they go nuclear, at which time our problems with them become diplomatic problems. Doesn’t this provide an incentive to countries like Iran, Iraq, and really anyone else who’s tired of taking our crap to accelerate their nuclear programs?
  • What diplomatic leverage do we have over North Korea? Certainly there’s nothing we can threaten them with if the military option is off the table (and it obviously is, as there’s no way South Korea would support US military action against North Korea), so that means we have to pay them off to do what we want. And one thing we know for sure is that North Korea is going to lie and cheat if it can. That’s how they got the nuclear weapons we think they already have in the first place.