A Lady's Ruminations

"Jane was firm where she felt herself to be right." -Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

A Two-Term Mistake

Who is he to say anything? Mr. Bomb-An-Asprin-Factory-Because-My-Mistress-Is-Testifying!

AP: Bill Clinton: U.S. Made a Big Mistake Invading Iraq---

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Former President Bill Clinton told Arab students Wednesday the United States made a "big mistake" when it invaded Iraq, stoking the partisan debate back home over the war.

Clinton cited the lack of planning for what would happen after Saddam Hussein was overthrown.

"Saddam is gone. It's a good thing, but I don't agree with what was done," Clinton told students at a forum at the American University of Dubai.

"It was a big mistake. The American government made several errors ... one of which is how easy it would be to get rid of Saddam and how hard it would be to unite the country."

Clinton's remarks came when he was taking questions about the U.S. invasion, which began in 2003. His response drew cheers and a standing ovation at the end of the hour-long session.

Clinton said the United States had done some good things in Iraq: the removal of Saddam, the ratification of a new constitution and the holding of parliamentary elections.

"The mistake that they made is that when they kicked out Saddam, they decided to dismantle the whole authority structure of Iraq. ... We never sent enough troops and didn't have enough troops to control or seal the borders," Clinton said.
Ah, so we ought to have left Saddam's Baathist cronies in positions of power?

Would the people really have trusted the leftover authorities? Doubtful. They are now eager to reclaim their country from those Baathists and the Iranian and Al-Qaeda insurgents who are causing all the problems.

How exactly would Bill Clinton, who made regime change (which means all of it) the policy of the United States, have done anything differently?

Things worth doing are often very, very hard work. This isn't like sewing a blanket back together after it has been ripped. It isn't over in a matter of minutes or days or weeks or even months.

It took the United States a long, long time to get things squared away and set up the country.

Perhaps Bill Clinton should mind where he says things. Don't want to stir up the Arab Street. Oh, wait, that would require being on the opposite side. He's their friend.