“The end justifies the means… two wrongs do make a right.”
Niccolo Machiavelli (1469-1527) “The Prince”
Hearing the press conference on July 17th of President George W.Bush and British Primer Minister Tony Blair it is not difficult to realize that the rhetoric of modern politicians is not that far from Machiavelli’s teachings.
Mr. Bush dodged the question about whether he was taking personal responsibility for the wrong statement about Iraq looking for uranium in Africa. His reply,
” I take responsibility for putting our troops into action. And I made that decision because Saddam Hussein was a threat to our security and a threat to the security of other nations. I take responsibility for making the decision, the tough decision to put together a coalition to remove Saddam Hussein, because the intelligence — not only our intelligence, but the intelligence of this great country — made a clear and compelling case that Saddam Hussein was a threat to security and peace”
In other words, he defended his own actions as commander -in-chief of the U.S. armed forces, while avoiding a response to the direct question. It is not difficult to “hear”in his answer the advice of the great philosopher of the Renaissance in his famous treatise, The Prince: ” navigate successfully the waves of deception and prudence to gain the support of the masses”
A few hours before, the embattled Prime Minister, addressing the U.S. Congress, had said “If we’re wrong, the Iraqi war was justified even if the banned weapons (the most important excuse for the war) are not found in Iraq.” A different scenario portrayed by the two leaders. Mr. Blair saying “If we’re wrong” and Mr. Bush stating. “I strongly believe he was trying to reconstitute his nuclear weapons program… And the truth will say that this intelligence was good intelligence. There’s no doubt in my mind”
The fact that Saddam’s regime was despotic, cruel and criminal has never been argued by anyone. The trouble here is the MEANS used by the U.S. and British governments to justify a pre-emptive war because he represented a direct threat to the U.S. fundamentally based on “intelligence reports.”
The REAL reasons behind all this cover-up becomes darker day by day? This affair is becoming more like a snowball growing bigger by the hour. As I write this article another part of this “puzzle” seems to be developing. In England, Dr. David Kelly, a scientist involved in the now infamous British dossier with the argument that Saddam was looking for uranium in Africa has been missing since Thursday and a body found 5 miles from his home seems to match Dr. Kelly’s. He was named as the source for the story claming that the office of Prime Minister Blair had “sexed up” a dossier about Iraq’s weapons of mass destruction.
If this news should be true speculations will rise to a dangerous level. This situation could become bigger than Watergate on both sides of the Atlantic. The following weeks will be without a doubt full of “surprises”. Meanwhile, more American soldiers are dying in Iraq.
* Ruben Arvizu is Director for Latin America of the Nuclear Age Peace Foundation.