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March 9 2003 1:42 AM

Unsubtle Subtitle

Kenneth Pollack on The Case for Invading Iraq.

(Continued from Page 1)

Bush should take the French position, leaving us on the verge of war with Iraq for months. That'll keep the price of crude up, increasing domestic production and profits. For some reason, that doesn't seem to be what's happening.

Nor are his oil buddies happy, according to MatteBlacke here:

As it happens, oil company stocks are trading at about five year lows, and well below the price at which they were when the Iraq war talk started. [He links to this chart and this chart.—Ed.]

Now, maybe Kinsley knows more about what makes oilmen happy than the sharks on Wall Street. But I doubt it.

Last, and perhaps most important, is this question from Chafe:

Kinsley shoots down many reasons/motives attributed by others to Mr. Bush for choosing war with Iraq. He then proposes that oil is an/the ulterior motive. Okay, so far. But what, Mr. Kinsley, is Mr. Bush's primary motive? Or is that either an impenetrable mystery or the subject for another time? … 2:00 p.m.


Wednesday, Mar. 5, 2003

The enemy of my enemy is a putz: Christopher Hitchens and Tim Noah are both looking out for the Kurds in the coming double-cross. For Hitchens, cozying up to the Turks is a disaster. Historyprof responds with the strong geopolitical argument in favor of an alliance with Turkey—the Bosporus is crucial, Turkey checks Russia, etc. The analogue is Israel:

Supporting Turkey is a bit like supporting Israel. Yes, the Israelis are a brutal country that talks secularism and practices theocracy, but they can park a mechanized army on the banks of the Suez Canal in forty-eight hours, and whoever can do that is (when it counts) a useful ally, if not exactly a good friend. For similar reasons, this is not the time to alienate Turkey, or dredge up a whole host of Turkish historical "sins" just because we're annoyed with the vote of the Turkish parliament.

There are good answers, too. As for screwing the Kurds, CaptainRonVoyage was ahead of the curve, as he notes in "Tomorrow's Blowback Today." Still, the most contrarian position on Kurdish betrayal would be "they deserve it." Atsjackson comes close here:

Faced with a dictator committed to their destruction in defense of his ambitions, the Kurds still managed to engage in open warfare within their divided communities with near-suicidal results. If the Kurds ever intend to establish a modern nation-state, they should spend less time grousing about how they've been "screwed" in the past by outside forces and reflect more on those defects in their culture which cripple their abilities to live at peace with themselves and their neighbors …

C3Fray: baltimore-aureole grades Gregg Easterbrook's sketch of a battle plan for Iraq (B-) and concludes with this: