Juan Cole: Outstanding U.S. Citizen
Lest we forget those who DID know better that we might listen to them better next time. From Informed Comment, the blog of Juan Cole, Professor of History at the University of Michigan…
Tuesday, April 30, 2002
It is a mistake to believe that multilateralists accept “rhetoric, promises, and declarations (especially with regard to Iran and Iraq).”
I know of few informed persons who would like to see the Saddam Hussein regime continue in power. I am not, however, the international community, and I am not comfortable with allowing Mssrs. Rumsfeld and Wolfowitz to substitute themselves for it.
The key point is that in the wake of the two World Wars, the first of which cost 8.5 million soldiers’ lives, and the second of which cost 61 million lives altogether, an international community did come into existence. The United Nations Charter, the Security Council, and NATO were all set up as institutions in hopes of introducing some law and order into the jungle of unbridled state sovereignty. The United States is signatory to the UN Charter and to several other instruments of international law.
As a result, the United States may not unilaterally go to war against another state in the absence of a recognized casus belli without betraying the very ideals it championed in 1945…
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