Baseball Crank
Covering the Front and Back Pages of the Newspaper
April 1, 2003
WAR: Kinsley Loses It

Certainly an award for rhetorical overstatement could go to this Michael Kinsley passage: "George W. Bush is now the closest thing in a long time to dictator of the world"

Let's look at Kinsley's main point:

[S]ince the end of World War II, the United States has at least formally agreed to international constraints on the right of any nation, including itself, to start a war. These constraints were often evaded, but rarely just ignored. And evasion has its limits, enforced by the sanction of embarrassment. This gave these international rules at least some real bite.

First, this is semantics -- and if ever someone has "evaded" rather than "ignored" UN sanction, it's Bush, who claims authority to act under the UN resolutions that ended Gulf War 1 and who obtained yet another resolution promising the now-famous "serious consequences" if it was not complied with. And can I just ask -- I don't know the exact answer -- how many times since 1946 the UN Security Council has been asked to authorize the use of force, and how many times it has given that authority? I'm guessing that it's a much smaller number than the number of military actions taken during the last five decades, or even the actions taken by the US. Did I miss LBJ going to the Security Council after the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution? Did we have UN sanction for Grenada? Kosovo? Bombing Libya? Trying to spring the hostages from Iran? And when was US policy ever subjected to the "bite" of international law, other than when we got bit by leaving Saddam in power?

Posted by Baseball Crank at 7:10 AM | War 2002-03 | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)
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