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Saturday, September 06, 2003

Prof. Krugman Is Confused - Sen. Kerry Helps

P. Krugman, from his latest diatribe:

All the world knows about the Iraq about-face: having squandered our military strength in a war he felt like fighting even though it had nothing to do with terrorism...

Iraq had nothing to do with terrorism? George Tenet was confused. But John Kerry, who, incidentally, served in Viet Nam, understood the link between Saddam, terror, and 9/11.

We excerpt from his Oct. 9, 2002 Senate floor speech on the resolution authorizing the use of force against Iraq:

...But the administration missed an opportunity 2 years ago and particularly a year ago after September 11. They regrettably, and even clumsily, complicated their own case. The events of September 11 created new understanding of the terrorist threat and the degree to which every nation is vulnerable. That understanding enabled the administration to form a broad and impressive coalition against terrorism. Had the administration tried then to capitalize on this unity of spirit to build a coalition to disarm Iraq, we would not be here in the pressing days before an election, late in this year, debating this now.

Now, I am not a genius who went to Yale (John Kerry did!), so I may not be deciphering this correctly. When he says "the administration missed an opportunity 2 years ago", I presume he is saying that, in response to the bombing of the USS Cole in October of 2000, President Clinton should have attacked Iraq. That certainly would have been an October surprise, since the Cole bombing was widely viewed as an al-Qaeda operation, although perhaps Sen. Kerry has superior insight.

Kerry's subsequent meaning is crystal clear - if Bush had rallied the world against Saddam immediately after 9/11, the world, and Kerry too, would have gotten on board. At that point, only P. Krugman would be left behind.

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