January 20, 2004

DONALD SENSING WRITES that Andrew Sullivan is wrong about preemption:

While I see Andrew’s point, I don’t entirely agree. There are two actors in any potential pre-emption situation, us and the other country.

What Andrew says in his post is that the Iraqi WMD picture painted by the American intelligence apparatus was so spectacularly wrong that using WMD weapons or programs as an element of the casus belli for future military actions against a foreign power can’t be credible anymore. . . .

The lesson here for us is to do intelligence better, but the lesson for would-be foreign leaders seeking WMDs may well be that secrecy and bluffing are a good way to find oneself on the wrong end of regime change.

That seems to be what motivated Libyan dictator Moammar Qaddaffi to abandon WMD programs.

Read the whole thing.

UPDATE: Spoons says that Sensing is right on substance, but Sullivan is right on politics.

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