Iraq should be next target : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread

Iraq should be next target

Natalie Missakian, Register Staff October 22, 2001 NEW HAVEN Iraq should be the United States' next target in the war on terrorism once the Taliban in Afghanistan collapses, Middle East expert and Yale graduate Michael Rubin argued Sunday night. Comparing Iraq under Sadaam Hussein to a "hornet's nest," Rubin said there are two options: do nothing, or get rid of it.

"The worst possible reaction would be to go up to the hornet's nest with a stick, stir up all the hornets, walk away and let our friends and allies ... deal with the consequences," he warned.

He said the question is not whether the United States has proof Iraq was connected to the World Trade Center and Pentagon attacks, but whether Iraq is a threat.

"I'm very afraid that if we don't deal with Sadaam Hussein on our terms, he will come to us and deal with us on theirs," said Rubin, a visiting fellow of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy and a 1994 Yale graduate.

Rubin, who has recently spent time in Iran, Iraq, Yemen, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan and the Sudan, spoke at Yale's Battell Chapel Sunday night as part of the university's "Democracy, Security and Justice Series," which is exploring the implications of the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.

He said while the U.S. is often criticized for being an imperialist power that meddles in the affairs of other nations, many of the Iraqi citizens he has met question why the U.S., a powerful country, has not done more to help them. "You must be in cahoots with Sadaam Hussein," they tell him.

Rubin said the first phase of the war on terrorism capturing Osama bin Laden and defeating the Taliban should be "quite easy." The Afghan people initially welcomed the Taliban into power because people wanted security, wanted the war in Afghanistan over, and because their treatment under the Northern Alliance which was in power at the time "wasn't much better." Sixty percent of the Taliban "saw which way the wind was blowing and joined the Taliban at the last minute." Now that the momentum is turning against them, he said the Taliban's collapse is imminent and the question is what kind of government do we want to replace them.

He said the Taliban's hatred of the U.S. has nothing to do with foreign policy. He said America's success puts the Taliban's legitimacy into question.

"When you're trying to create a theological state and you have a secular example that is doing much better, no matter what our foreign policy is, they're going to hate us," he said.

-- Martin Thompson (, October 23, 2001


Their agents of destruction, need to be removed from their hands immeadiately a.s.a.p. And Hussein should be forced to hold general elections. The time is now to join the World Coalition, or be destroyed by it.

-- jimmie-the-weed (, October 23, 2001.

Moderation questions? read the FAQ