Friday, September 20, 2002

Well... Iraq has responded to the Bush speech... and if this story is to be believed, it went over rather well with the U.N., if not with the U.S.:

The speech to the U.N. General Assembly — one week after Bush addressed the gathering — was greeted with loud applause by diplomats from around the world.

But in Washington, White House spokesman Ari Fleischer said the speech "presented nothing new and was more of the same."

"The speech is an attempt to lure the world down the same dead-end road that the world has traveled before and, in that, it represents a disappointing failure by Iraq," Fleischer said.

Appearing in the afternoon at the homeland security command center, Bush told reporters he had not heard the speech by Iraq's foreign minister.

"Let me guess, the United States is guilty, the world doesn't understand, we don't have weapons of mass destruction — it's the same old song and dance we've heard for 11 years," he said, calling anew for the United Nations to pass a get-tough resolution.
Other than the resounding silliness of Bush's personal response (and why the hell didn't someone brief him?) I'm struck by how lame the administration's party line is sounding in the face of Iraq basically begging the U.N. to inspect whatever they please.

Then again, with the news that Congress is planning to quickly pass a resolution authorizing force, it may be that Bush's abortive attempt towards bringing the U.N. onside might not stop him from invading Iraq after all, although I'm sure that Powell and the rest know exactly what it would mean if Iraq invited inspectors and the U.S. invaded anyway. Needless to say, it wouldn't be pretty.

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