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Why America should wage war against Iraq and ignore 'Old Europe'

By Dave Duffy

Dave Duffy

February 19, 2003

I'm sort of amazed at the debate going on in America and around the world over America's pending war against Iraq. I can't think of anything more obvious than the fact we have no choice but to forcibly disarm Iraq, and I see it directly tied to the success of our war against terrorism.

If Iraq has a chemical and biological arsenal, which it has, and if it is seeking to build a nuclear bomb, which it is, and if it has ties to terrorism, which it does, doesn't it stand to reason they should be forcibly disarmed in light of the fact Iraq hates America and they have failed to voluntarily disarm even after 12 years of UN sanctions?

Iraq threw UN inspectors out in 1998, and the only reason inspectors are back in is because the United States put an army on its doorstep and told them to let them back in. But they are not actively cooperating with inspectors, but instead are engaging them in a game of hide and seek. Iraq obviously has a huge advantage in the game since they have a country the size of California in which to hide things like mobile biological weapons labs, and they can readily move weapons out of sight in the unlikely event that some of the handful of inspectors get near them.

The French and Russians don't want Hussein out of power for obvious reasons. The French have $40-60 billion worth of oil contracts with Hussein, and Russia has oil contracts plus is owed $8 billion by Hussein. It is they, not the U.S., who are after Iraq's oil wealth.

Not that I don't think we should be after Iraq's oil. In fact, after this war is over I think we should assess Iraq the cost of the war and take it out in oil. That solves the "cost of the war" problem raised by so many Democrats who want to block Bush from pursuing this just war. We can also appease the French and Russians, if we want, by paying them off with oil money. Personally, after the war I would tell the French to stick it, cancel all their Iraqi oil contracts, and tell them to go cry on the shoulders of their new friends, the Germans.

The French and Germans say Iraq has no ties to Al Qaida and other terrorists. Haven't they ever witnessed the $10,000 checks Hussein gives out to the families of suicide bombers who blow themselves up and kill innocent Israeli citizens? Is that not terrorism? Is Osama bin Laden not driven by his hatred for Israel and the United States infidel that supports Israel. Of course, so as not to offend our Arab friends, we're not supposed to talk too loudly about the terrorists who kill Israelis. That's a different type of terrorism because it's only killing Jews, who many in that region hate, and if we talk too loudly about it some Arab nations may not want to sanction our war against Iraq.

Let's not forget who Saddam Hussein is: a former hit man in Iraqi politics before he managed to murder all the opposition that stood in his way of grabbing hold of power as dictator. He waged a 10-year war against Iran in which he generously used his arsenal of chemical weapons, then he used them against his own people, the Kurds, in an uprising. He has killed somewhere in the vicinity of half a million people. He hates the United States with a vengeance, and he still possesses biological weapons like anthrax and possibly smallpox. He will likely use those weapons against us the moment he figures out a way, and the most obvious way is to hook up with some terrorists who hate America just as much as Hussein does.

We live in some very dangerous times folks. America may be the world's only superpower when it comes to conventional and nuclear weapons, but chemical and biological weapons are the poor man's weapons of mass destruction. It is for good reason that biological weapons like anthrax and smallpox are referred to as "the poor man's atom bomb." In the hands of terrorists, weapons like these could decimate parts of America.

Consider the following simulation of a terrorist attack using a biological weapon. It was conducted in June 2001, three months before the terrorist attacks that toppled the World Trade Centers in New York. The simulation took place at Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland, and participating institutions included the John Hopkins Center for Civilian Biodefense Strategies, the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Oklahoma National Memorial Institute for the Prevention of Terrorism, and the Analytic Services Institute for Homeland Security. Five senior journalists who worked for major news organizations participated in mock news briefings, and a number of other participants played various key government positions ranging from the Director of Central Intelligence to key Government health advisors. Fifty people connected with U.S. bioterrorism policy preparedness observed the exercise. The goal was to increase awareness among Government officials of the danger of such an attack, and to examine the decision challenges the highest levels of Government would face if confronted with a biological attack.

The name of the simulation was Dark Winter, and the scenario included a covert terrorist attack using smallpox against three American cities: Oklahoma City, Philadelphia, and Atlanta. The ultimate aim was to improve strategies of response. Smallpox was chosen as the disease because historically it has been the most feared and deadly of diseases, and it was the most likely choice of terrorists.

I'll cut to the chase with the results of the exercise: Although the exercise lasted only two days, it simulated a time span of seven weeks. Within that time, one million Americans were dead of smallpox and the disease had spread to 25 states and 13 foreign countries. The biological attack succeeded, just as the WTC attacks would succeed three months later. The smallpox epidemic it started got out of control, panic had spread across America, interrupting vital services such as food deliveries to supermarkets. Hospitals were overwhelmed, there was rioting in many cities, and people had begun mass migrations from cities to flee the epidemic.

Here is the last scene of the simulation:

Finally, a printed message is handed to all members of the National Security Council. It states that the New York Times, Washington Post, and USA Today have received anonymous letters demanding the U.S. withdraw its forces from the Persian Gulf and Saudi Arabia. The letter claims responsibility for the smallpox attack and contains a generic fingerprint of the smallpox strain matching the fingerprint of the strain causing the current epidemic. Unless the U.S. forces withdraw in one week, it warns of renewed attacks using smallpox, anthrax, and plague.

At the time, the results of the simulation were widely reported in the media as shocking evidence that the nation is not fully prepared against a terrorist biological attack. Bush subsequently ordered production of enough smallpox vaccine for every person in the country, and he ordered the vaccination of the military and some civilian medical personnel, which is now underway.

The weapon of the simulation happened to be smallpox, but it could have been anthrax, stocks of which Hussein is known to possess because previous UN inspections uncovered them. What if such an attack really does occur in the future because we fail to disarm Hussein now and he later manages to funnel some of his anthrax to a terrorist group which in turn funnels it to sleeper cells in the United States? Or what if the U.S. is actually attacked with smallpox? A German newspaper Monday claimed Hussein does have smallpox and accused the German government of keeping the information from the German people.

Why wait for that possibility to take place! We have a chance now to see that such an attack doesn't happen by taking out Hussein now, before he develops even more WMD such as a nuclear bomb. And when we're done with Iraq, we should go after countries like Iran which actively sponsors terrorism, countries like North Korea which sells weapons to terrorists, and anyone else who cooperates with terrorists and threatens America. I thought George Bush had it about right after Sept. 11: "You are either with us or you are with the terrorists!"

This War Against Terrorists is not going to be an easy one. There are a lot of people and a lot of countries involved. We've got to take them down one by one, and we should ignore the French and Germans. They do represent "Old Europe" just as Defesne Secretary Rumsfeld said. Not only are they shells of their former status as mighty European states, but they have sunk into the decay and inefficiency that all socialist regimes eventually sink into.

And just as there are obvious and simple reasons why we should wage war against Iraq, there are obvious and simple reasons why old Europe and many third world countries do not support us: simple jealousy and envy are the main ones.

They are jealous of America's preeminence in the world and they are envious of the fact that we are not just the strongest nation in the world, but are probably stronger than all other nations combined. Some say America is as strong as the Roman Empire of centuries ago. Don't fool yourself. We are much stronger than Rome ever dreamed of being. Our strength comes from our democratic and capitalist institutions, and it comes with the responsibility to rid the world of dictators and countries that are bent on terrorism and America's destruction.

Read More by Dave Duffy

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