The Corner

Idealists For a Softer Saddam

On NPR’s “Morning Edition” today, reporter Eric Westervelt explored potential Iraq exit strategies with a slanted slate of experts. On one side was former Reagan State Dept. official Richard Murphy, suggesting American intolerance of casualties has emboldened terrorists. On the other side were Ivo Daalder and William Galston (neither identified as Clinton administration officials, just experts), “White House hopeful” [!] Dennis “The U.S. is a Menace” Kucinich, and Ted Galen Carpenter of the Cato Institute. Didn’t that group have something to do with libertarianism? Not abroad.

Carpenter brusquely declared we should cut and run: “The primary objective is to cut America’s losses, not transform Iraq into Iowa.” Westervelt added that one viable exit strategy Carpenter suggested is a gentler version of its last dictator, quoted like this: “…Housebroken version of Saddam Hussein, someone who would rule with a very strong hand but without Saddam’s maniacal brutality.” That’s not exactly founding-father idealism, is it?

Tim GrahamTim Graham is Director of Media Analysis at the Media Research Center, where he began in 1989, and has served there with the exception of 2001 and 2002, when served ...


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