If Spanish-American philosopher George Santayana warned us that “those who do not learn history are doomed to repeat it,” then why are we constantly repeating past mistakes and allowing a madman like Saddam Hussein to remain in power?
Since the Gulf War of the 1990’s, Hussein has been in the back of our minds, but not forgotten. With the events over the past two years, along with heightened terror alerts, the world has taken a new approach to global terrorism. The Bush administration claims that Saddam Hussein does in fact need to be taken out of power, and they certainly have the evidence to back it up.
Let’s take the advice of Santayana for a second, and think back to 1939. Hitler was a nobody, who took control of a post-war country enveloped in destruction and a depression that far surpasses anything the United States has ever felt. In 1939 Hitler broke the Treaty of Versailles. The treaty prohibited Germany from having more than 100,000 in his standing army and completely prohibited the production of weapons within the country. Hitler sidestepped these stipulations by creating weapons in other countries and found ways to cheat much like Hussein is today. Should we wait until Hussein’s actions kill more than 55 million people like Hitler did in World War II before we do anything about it?
Those opposed to the war are looking for the “smoking gun.” How closely would they like to see that gun? If they wait a little while longer, it is possible that they could see that “smoking gun” on American soil or the soil of our allies. Cases of warheads have been found, and an accurate inventory of weapons has yet to be received by officials. They have repeatedly broken sanctions, including the one that prohibits Iraq to have a missile that fires more than 93 miles. When is enough, enough?
Anti-war propaganda states that we have no evidence that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction. We all know throughout the Gulf War that Iraq was equipped with chemical weapons. They had a large stock of VX nerve gas, which kills within 15 to 20 minutes after one drop of exposure on the skin, and mustard gas, which is a blistering agent that blisters skin, eyes and even the lining of the lungs of those who come in contact with it. Somehow, these agents left over from the Gulf War have not been accounted for.
Anti-war propaganda also states that U. N. inspectors destroyed most (not all) of Iraq’s weapons in the 1990’s, but it failed to inform the public of the years weapons inspectors were not in the country. Just think of how much could have been produced in that time. We know the Iraqi’s have chemical agents, and they have yet to hand them over or show any proof of their destruction. Anthrax has also been deemed “missing.” I find it hard to believe that a country like Iraq can just “misplace” chemical and biological weapons that reap consequences of that magnitude.
Such propaganda also suggests that everyone is against us. President Bush currently has 18 European countries backing us and only three opposing us. Ironically enough, the three main countries who oppose us, which are France, Germany and Russia, are the very countries that supply Iraq with weapons in exchange for cheap oil. Some argue that this is a battle over oil, and that is exactly what it is! France, Germany and Russia are far more concerned with their oil prices than being our ally against the threat of terrorism.
Saddam Hussein is a madman who leads his country with an iron fist. Hussein is powered by the fear of his people and has the potential to follow in Hitler’s footsteps if the U. S. does not intervene. We, as a nation, can not afford to make the same mistake again.