The Next Bombshells Will Be

The Next Bombshells Will Be over Baghdad
The Philly Inquirer drops a bombshell this morning, reporting that the Bush administration has come out of the closet with its decision to remove Saddam Hussein from power in Iraq.

Let’s think about that for half a sec. The President wakes up one morning and tells an aide to tell some newspaper that he’s going to have a fellow head of state removed from office with military force. Cue Yakov Smirnoff: “What a country!” We haven’t done anything like this since Nixon and Allende in 1973. And even that was supposed to be covert.

Ed. Note: In researching this story (Googling to make sure I had Smirnoff spelled right) I discovered that Cold War relic comedian has his own theater in Branson, Missouri. I don’t want to show too much Blue State snobbery here, but — Yakov Smirnoff has his own damn theater? What a country, indeed. Anyway, back to the commentary.

You might be asking how smart can it be to announce our intentions. Wouldn’t it be better instead to simply strike without warning? Perhaps not. Put yourself in the cement shoes of Saddam for a moment. Bush I had you in the crosshairs but never squeezed the trigger. So you feel pretty damn invincible. The next Amercian president just wanted to ignore you, and you mostly let him, while quietly working on WMDs and supporting barbarian killers (my word choice instead of “terrorists,” remember). You’re fat, squirrely, and happy. Now along comes Bush II. Here’s a man who brushed away an enemy regime in a inaccessable, inhospitable country in a matter of weeks.

Then he casually announces, through a mere aide, that he’s coming after you. Personally. What might that do to your decision-making process? How might you sleep? How long can you maintain your judgement while on constant alert? How long will your generals or security officers allow you to keep power or even live, knowing that association with you could mean their own deaths?

A brilliant, brilliant move. And so simple, the French will never get it.