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A Letter to the New York Times


When Condoleezza Rice writes, "Countries that decide to disarm lead inspectors to weapons and production sites, answer questions before they are asked, state publicly and often the intention to disarm and urge their citizens to cooperate," I find myself in agreement.

The trouble is, Ms. Rice is silent on the obligations and actions of countries that decide to accuse others of having the arms for which disarming would be necessary. Countries that decide to do so because they hold genuine knowledge of such weapons provide the intelligence to lead inspectors to weapons and production sites, anticipate questions and answer them fully before they are asked, and publicly present the hard, physical evidence to support their bald assertions. They do not ask their own citizens, allies, and the country accused to accept such serious charges on blind faith.

If the Administration actually has such evidence, it should present it. If it does not have such evidence, it should admit it. If the Administration has evidence and is failing to present it to the world, it is aiding, abetting, and giving comfort to the regime of Mr. Hussein.

Perhaps some in the Administration would say that revealing such information would be a breach of security. But why? Surely Mr. Hussein knows his own capabilities. Surely it would be useful and persuasive to the American people and our allies to present such evidence. Such an objection makes it seem the Administration believes that the people from whom the truth must be kept are the citizens of the United States, and the Congress duly elected to represent them.

John Kennedy and Adlai Stevenson were able to shame Cuba and Russia before the entire world in 1962. Even in the now disdained forum of the United Nations. They had the evidence, knew it, and soon the entire world knew.

Why does this Administration lack the courage to do the same?


( 1 comment — Leave a comment )
Jan. 24th, 2003 01:06 pm (UTC)
Great letter. Yeah! I hope they print it.

Have you thought of sending it to Murray, Cantwell, and your rep, also?
( 1 comment — Leave a comment )