Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
September 10, 2002
WAR: McCain Makes The Case
Not everyone who's been calling for the President to "make the case" -- which to me, really just means getting on national TV to repeat a lot of what Cheney, Rumsfeld and Rice have said already, plus presenting some classified info to key Congresspersons to make them feel important -- is against widening the war in Iraq. John McCain manages to lay out pro-war arguments side by side with a call for Bush to get out in front and get Congress behind him. In fact, McCain's vision of "the armies and ideals of the righteous" fighting for "a love that is invincible" is more radical in some respects than what the President has (publicly) endorsed; his logic would seem to lead even to Beijing, although I'm sure he's too prudent to follow it that far. A few excerpts (emphasis mine):
"Our enemies have as their cause the spread of a political-religious empire based on a perverted interpretation of Islam that substitutes a lust for violence for a love of peace."
"Terrorism's appeal will endure where people have no experience with the fruits of self-government. We cannot counter it by advocating freedom only where it couldn't unsettle economic and security relationships with undemocratic regimes. Until all the world's remaining despotic regimes--be they profoundly cruel or in some respects more benevolent--are replaced by democratically committed regimes, terrorism will always find new adherents, and the threat to America's security and ideals will persist. Change has come to Afghanistan. It must be protected there. But change must also come to Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Pakistan, Iran, the Palestinian Authority and wherever nations are ordered to exalt the few at the expense of the many."
"Our regional allies who oppose using force against Saddam Hussein warn of uncontrollable popular hostility to an American attack on Iraq. But what would really be the effect on Arab populations of seeing other Arabs liberated from oppression? Far from fighting to the last Iraqi, the people of that tortured society will surely dance on the regime's grave. . . Perhaps that is what truly concerns some of our Gulf War allies: that among the consequences of regime change in Iraq might be a stronger demand for self-determination from their own people."