Thursday, December 18, 2003

Law and Order Flashbacks

Courtesy of poster "Roderick" on Eschaton, we find out that Saddam Hussein might not get the death penalty after all. Why? Why else do you think? He's gonna rat out somebody else. Specifically, Syria.

Deposed Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein could be offered a deal in which he would give his captors information on if and how he hid weapons of mass destruction and if he smuggled some of them into Syria. In exchange, he would face life imprisonment and not be executed for war crimes, senior Iraqis attending a conference here on the future of the region have hinted.
The story goes on to describe the mysterious convoys headed from Iraq to Syria on the eve of the war, and there has been a lot of speculation that Saddam's WMDs were in those convoys. Personally, I don't buy it, simply because there would be leftovers (like soil contamination and the like) that people simply haven't found in Iraq. It may well be weaponry, but it's probably not WMD, and it might well have been personnel.

Regardless, though, this creates a problem. If Saddam gets cut a deal by the Arabs, those Iraqis who don't sympathize with the deal will be outraged, and Bush will certainly catch some heat from those Republicans and other Americans who want to see Hussein swing. And even if they get proof that Syria accepted Saddam's weapons, what are they going to do? Syria is not a party to the chemical and biological weapons treaties, and there's no U.N. resolution forbidding them from having them. The United States doesn't have the manpower to hold two countries- it barely seems able to manage one. The U.S. could say that Syria's aid to Iraq makes them an enemy, but that's up to interpretation, and there's no way the Brits would come along. They could still build up a "coalition" by browbeating smaller countries, but without the Brits, it'd look like even more of a sham.

Iraq is still a problem, but it's theoretically manageable. Iraq and Syria? Lunacy.

No comments:

Post a Comment