07 March 2006

One old argument that refuses to die...

Is the one about the West arming Saddam, which gets raised at every opportunity by Stoppers.

Let's nail this thing once and for all.
  1. Ultimately, whatever the Thatcher and Reagan governments did or did not do is irrelevant since neither of them are in power anymore. The only continuity between now and then is Donald Rumsfeld- who most of us can agree probably ought to go from the Defense Department. The actions of Anthony Charles Lynton Blair and George Walker Bush should not be limited by what their predecessors did.
  2. It is not an argument for opposing the Iraq war. It is a statement of fact. Even then, it would only have increased our duty to act on the 'break it, you bought it principle'.
  3. The biggest supplier of weapons to arms to Saddam Hussein's was the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Fact and a plainly observable one at that (what do Iraqi soldiers carry? the AK-47). If you don't believe me look here:http://www.sipri.org/contents/armstrad/atirq_data.html

Yes, the USA did supply Iraq with weapons. So did all of the Five Nukes. No, it shouldn't have happened. Ultimately, however, some of that anger should be reflected at the regime that used these weapons against its own people, because they are mostly to blame.

1 comment:

Hughes Views said...

Good post - the other thing to remember was that the world was a rather different place in those cold war days. The West's primary strategic objective was, quite rightly, to contain the Soviet Union and its allies (which is also why 'we' helped the Taliban and some other rather disreputable warlords to drive the Russians out of Afghanistan).

However much the purists protest, it is sometimes necessary to do business with dreadful regimes to prevent even worse ones from prospering. And often our leaders must take what they think is the 'least-worst' option because a 'best' isn't available.

Many of the loudest protestors unfortunately don't seem to be able to understand complexity and see everything simply in terms of goodies and baddies.