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Efterkrigsdebatten

Paul Krugmans kolumn "Matters of Emphasis" i New York Times 29/4 bör helst läsas i sin helhet. Här är dock några utdrag:
"'We were not lying,' a Bush administration official told ABC News. 'But it was just a matter of emphasis.' The official was referring to the way the administration hyped the threat that Saddam Hussein posed to the United States. According to the ABC report, the real reason for the war was that the administration 'wanted to make a statement'. And why Iraq? 'Officials acknowledge that Saddam had all the requirements to make him, from their standpoint, the perfect target.'"
Noam Chomsky uttrycker samma slutsats i en intervju i ZNet:
" (...) [In September 2002] the administration released its National Security Strategy, sending many shudders around the world, including the US foreign policy elite. The Strategy has many precedents, but does break new ground: for the first time in the post-war world, a powerful state announced, loud and clear, that it intends to rule the world by force, forever, crushing any potential challenge it might perceive. This is often called in the press a doctrine of 'pre-emptive war.' That is crucially wrong; it goes vastly beyond pre-emption. Sometimes it is called more accurately a doctrine of 'preventive war.' That too understates the doctrine. No military threat, however remote, need be 'prevented'; challenges can be concocted at will, and may not involve any threat other than 'defiance' (...)

When a doctrine is announced, some action must be taken to demonstrate that it is seriously intended, so that it can become a new 'norm in international relations,' as commentators will soberly explain. What is needed is a war with an 'exemplary quality,' Harvard Middle East historian Roger Owen pointed out, discussing the reasons for the attack on Iraq. The exemplary action teaches a lesson that others must heed, or else.

Why Iraq? The experimental subject must have several important qualities. It must be defenseless, and it must be important; there's no point illustrating the doctrine by invading Burundi. Iraq qualified perfectly in both respects." ZNet: Noam Chomsky Interviewed (13/4 2003)
Krugman ställer fler frågor:
"One wonders whether most of the public will ever learn that the original case for war has turned out to be false. In fact, my guess is that most Americans believe that we have found W.M.D.'s. Each potential find gets blaring coverage on TV; how many people catch the later announcement - if it is ever announced - that it was a false alarm? It's a pattern of misinformation that recapitulates the way the war was sold in the first place. Each administration charge against Iraq received prominent coverage; the subsequent debunking did not.

Some strange things certainly happened. For example, in September Mr. Bush cited an International Atomic Energy Agency report that he said showed that Saddam was only months from having nuclear weapons. 'I don't know what more evidence we need,' he said. In fact, the report said no such thing - and for a few hours the lead story on MSNBC's Web site bore the headline 'White House: Bush Misstated Report on Iraq.' Then the story vanished - not just from the top of the page, but from the site. "
Slutligen:
"...why is our compassion so selective? (---) [C]onsider one of America's first major postwar acts of diplomacy: blocking a plan to send U.N. peacekeepers to Ivory Coast (a former French colony) to enforce a truce in a vicious civil war. The U.S. complains that it will cost too much. And that must be true - we wouldn't let innocent people die just to spite the French, would we?

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01 maj 2003

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