February 13, 2003

Whatever Else You Read Today,

Whatever Else You Read Today, Read This: Peggy Noonan has posted an eloquent, somber, and compelling essay on-line at OpinionJournal. Titled Gut Time, the piece traces Noonan's journey through the debate and to her realization that now is the time for action. She also nicely contextualizes that option within the grave reality it will likely bring. With our anxiety rising and the debate heating, it's something everyone -- right, left, or center -- should read. (No registration is required; thanks to Carolynne for the article.)

We cannot expect a successful invasion of Iraq to result in a new age of peace and security. Islamic terrorism won't stop until all the terrorists themselves are jailed or killed. They will probably do terrible things again before the West decides once and for all and en masse to stop them. We are in for rough times. It cannot be said often enough that we are in the era of weapons of mass destruction. It is one thing for a Hitler to plan a war, build up his military and move strategically to get what he wants. It is quite another when a thousand little Hilters get their hands on one huge weapon and passionately, nihilistically go forth to kill. There will be plenty more heartache before the drama is done.

But we can't dodge history. History won't let us. We'll have to deal with it, do our best, lead for the good. Iraq is part of the pattern of world terror. To move against it is a gamble. But to do nothing is a gamble too. It's gambling on Saddam's future goodwill, a new reluctance on his part to use what he has, a change of heart, mind and character. Does that strike you as a safe bet? A good one?

Me either.

Posted by Avocare at February 13, 2003 07:25 AM
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