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Talking Points for Why the US Should Not have Invaded Iraq

Iraq Did Not Pose a Clear and Present Danger
The White House says we should invade Iraq to prevent Saddam Hussein from using weapons of mass destruction. But during the 1990s United Nations weapons inspectors successfully dismantled all of Iraq's major chemical, biological and nuclear weapons facilities and destroyed nearly all of Iraq's weapons production capacity. Although he has rebuilt some of his capacity in the absence of inspections, he still has no means of delivery beyond Iraq's immediate region. In terms of conventional arms, Iraq's military is now at one-third of its pre-Gulf War strength. Since deterrence is working, why should the US start a bloody war that would undoubtedly lead to massive human suffering?

An Attack on Iraq Would Make Us Less Safe
Attacking Iraq without provocation will ignite anti-American sentiment around the world, disrupting efforts to weaken terrorist networks. Any attack would also further destabilize a Middle East already inflamed by the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. While the benefits of invading Iraq are murky, the costs are all too clear. The political costs are too much and the monetary costs are too much - especially during a U.S. recession where state budgets are greatly stressed.

It Would Be Costly and Without a Clear Victory
It is estimated that any full-scale invasion will cost as much as $100 billion and this does not include the costs to support Iraq once it is occupied. During the first Gulf War, allies like Japan covered 80 percent of the cost. But the US has only the sustentative support of Great Britain's Prime Minister, Tony Blair. Most likely US taxpayers—already facing renewed budget deficits—will have to pick up the costs. And even if the US does overthrow Hussein, what next? As the experience in Afghanistan shows, throwing out a government is easier than putting a new one together. An invasion without allies would leave the US to enforce a peace and administer a chaotic country fractured by ethnic conflicts: a costly enterprise indeed.

Other Options Besides War Were Available
The best way to stop Iraq from resuming its pursuit of weapons of mass destruction was to enforce the UN inspections, which were largely successful. The UN was having success with inspections, but the Bush Administration dismissed the effort out of hand. That was foolish. The US should have worked with the UN to get the inspection program back on track. Inspections should have been combined with a phased reduction in sanctions, thus offering the perspective of economic improvement to the Iraqi people.

There Was No Justification for a Pre-emptive Strike
Iraq does not pose an immediate threat. There is no evidence it supports terrorism. There are alternatives to unilateral attacks that would neither violate international law nor create a dangerous precedent for other countries to launch their own self-justified pre-emptive strikes. The US must further global peace by working within the international community, in agreement with international law, and exhausting all diplomatic and peaceful options.

On the No Blood for Oil Mantra
Shut up with the no blood for oil party line already. Study the issues and learn some facts. The reason so many people have flawed arguments about Iraq (like the we want Iraq for oil issue) is because honest and fact based debate doesn't happen. It's so very difficult to get all of the facts. This country has a terrible education system and most people learn everything they are ever going to know by the 12th grade. Current U.S. and World history is not taught and most people get their "facts" piece meal from the media. Unfortunately these arguments don't fit into 1 hours news shows interrupted every ten minutes by deodorant commercials. These issues cannot be fully debated in a news paper column. The entertainment model that pushes Fear Factor and Survivor down the muddled masses throats in no way allows people to fully understand why Bush is going after Iraq. All it give is bits and pieces of trivia ammunition for people to espouse opinions based on emotions reacting to the fear of the enemy (read as anyone from a different culture who looks different from them.) Newspapers, news websites and news TV programs sell ads in return for giving viewers what they want to hear - not the information they NEED to hear.

Why solid anti war views are not articulated in the media
It's typical conservative crap for the person with the most obnoxious and loud voice to shout down those who don't agree with them. First off, protestors don't get the nearly the media coverage that the conservative voice does. Conservatives dominate cable TV news, radio, discussion groups and most print media. Not because they have the majority in numbers, but because conservatives consume that media more than liberals. Those supplying that media cater to the neoconservative Bush supporters because they are corporations with stock holders to answer to - stock holders who demand that these corporations maximize their profits. It's just capitalism and economics. Unfortunately, the liberal opinion doesn't get published (or broadcast), those seeking a liberal point of view get disgusted by the lack of valid educated debate and stop watching (or listening or reading) and the whole thing cycles in a one sided conservative circle where bullshit opinions stating you can't say Bush is a fucking moron without being called a traitor because we have troops in harms way get published so often that people begin to believe it.

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