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Editor's note. Since the posting of Dr. Sniegoski's magnificent extended analysis in August 2003, we have received precisely two adversely critical letters that were coherent enough to qualify for posting. They appear below.

Where are the refutations?

Four months and counting.

Nicholas Strakon
Editor-in-chief, TLD
December 9, 2003

To the editor ...

How many quotes would Dr. Sniegoski like me to give him from Democrats under Clinton, including William "The Zipper" Clinton himself, that Iraq did indeed possess WMDs? It's not a problem of someone lying, it's a problem of poor intelligence. Clinton believed Iraq had these weapons, but the difference between Clinton and Bush is that Clinton didn't have the b*lls to act on what the intel was showing. Not only that, but Saddam had more than enough time to haul his WMDs to Syria or Iran. Only a Democrat can believe all these Arab states didn't have or intend to build WMDs. And only a Democrat can believe that they would never use them against us anyway. You [TLD? — ed.] should change your name from the Democrat Party to the "Chamberlain party." Get off the airplane with a little piece of paper and whine: "Peace in our time."

Don Kopp
October 14, 2003

Dr. Sniegoski replies

I don't know whether Mr. Kopp is auditioning as a replacement for the embattled Rush Limbaugh, but he certainly qualifies as more humorous. Mr. Kopp believes that the Bush administration was simply a victim of "poor intelligence." The fact of the matter is that many intelligence and arms experts did not think Iraq possessed WMDs that threatened much of anyone, let alone the United States. As I brought out in my essay, the administration exaggerated, manipulated, and in some cases actually fabricated information that would support their war agenda, which, for the neocons, existed long before 9/11.

Bill Clinton did not focus on the likelihood that the United States was going to be attacked by Iraq; at least that was not a long-term theme of his policy. The Slick One said so many contradictory things, however, that it is probably the case that at one time or another he might have said something along those lines. What Clinton actually believed is anyone's guess.

One doesn't know quite what to make of Mr. Kopp's charge that Clinton "didn't have the b*lls" to get the United States into a draining war as a result of what Mr. Kopp himself regards as "poor intelligence." The logic here would imply the need either to elect women or to castrate male leaders in order to avoid senseless bloodshed. [Editor's note: Since it is the editorial policy of The Last Ditch to oppose electoral politicking, I think our choice is clear. — NS]

Mr. Kopp exclaims: "Only a Democrat can believe all these Arab states didn't have or intend to build WMDs." I can't believe even Democrats are that idiotic. In any case Mr. Kopp doesn't seem to grasp the obvious difference between material reality and mental desire. A claim that Saddam intended to obtain WMDs is not at all the same as the Bush administration's actual claim that Saddam possessed such weapons. I doubt the Bush administration could have ginned up public support for war if the claim had been restricted to Saddam's wishes and desires.

Nicholas Strakon comments

It is jolting to have one's forum mistaken for a Democratic organ on the grounds that it opposes deceitful warmongering and criminal, imperialistic, mass-murdering war. Let me remind Mr. Kopp of a certain unholy quartet of Democratic blood-spillers: Woodrow Wilson, Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Harry Truman, and Lyndon Baines Johnson. (Seeing those names all together makes me shudder.) Compared to those men Little John Kennedy was a piker as a mass murderer, but he didn't qualify as a peacenik, either. Neither does the most recent Democrat, Bill Clinton. Or have we already forgotten Clinton's bombing and invasion of the Balkans? He also bombed Iraq during his time in power, and pressed the blockade that starved and poisoned hundreds of thousands of Iraqi civilians. Clinton's case goes to show, I guess, that you don't have to wear the cojones in your family in order to be eligible for sudden elevation come the Day of the Rope.

Robin Cook was not the foreign secretary in Tony Blair's government at the time of his resignation. He was the Leader of the House of Commons. Is this the only factual inaccuracy in the piece? I think we should be told.

Rudy Carroll
October 24, 2003

Dr. Sniegoski replies

It is definitely an error. The sentence should have read: "As the former foreign secretary, Robin Cook, who resigned from Blair's cabinet over the Iraq issue, puts it: ...." It will be clear to all to what extent the correction transforms the meaning and import of the entire essay.

Mr. Carroll would like me to reveal other factual errors. I would actually correct other errors if I were aware of them. Hence, I would appreciate it very much if Mr. Carroll would meticulously proofread and fact-check the entire essay — in fact, it would be nice if he would proofread and fact-check all my essays. And I would hope that he would subject errors in punctuation to the gaze of his eagle eye as well. I've always had a difficult time determining when and where to put commas.

Nicholas Strakon comments

Looks as though I'm out of a job as an editor. And deservedly so! But even as I retreat, my congenital cussedness prevents me from revealing the thousand other critical errors in "The WMD lies" that I've been sitting on all this time.

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