Saturday, November 26, 2005

Shifting Sands 
American Future has put together a very valuable account of how malleable the New York Times' editorial board has been on Iraq and disarmament going back to 1993.

Except for a brief period during 1994, The Times’ editorial position was distinctly hawkish during the Clinton presidency. At no time did the Times express any doubts regarding the credibility of intelligence information pertaining to WMD...

Notwithstanding their preference for inspections, the editors did not shy away from advocating the use of air strikes – including unilateral American air strikes – if the obstacles constructed by Saddam made it impossible for the U.N.’s inspectors to fulfill their missions. The Times endorsed every U.S. military operation ordered by Clinton. None of the editorials insisted that the U.S. must obtain Security Council approval before undertaking a military action, nor did they require that military operations – unilateral or multilateral – be authorized by new Security Council resolutions. When the editors criticized the Clinton administration, it was for being too dovish, not too hawkish. They leveled similar criticisms at the U.N. Security Council. China, Russia and especially France were taken to task for giving priority to their commercial interests over coming to grips with the threat posed by Iraq’s WMD.

More to follow in a future installment.

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